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Eligibility and Eligible Lists

What is an Eligible List?

Eligible Lists are a list of every individual that passed the Civil Service Exam for either a job class (in the case of a Class Based Test or a Continuous Class Based Test), or a particular position (in the case of a Position Based Test). Eligible lists are in rank order, where your rank is determined based on your score on the exam.

Creating the Eligible List

Once all of the candidates have completed all of the exam parts, the City's Merit-Bridge Civil-Service Tool will calculate your final score, as well as the scores for each of the other candidates. The scores are then put in order from 1000 to 700, the better that you did on the exam the higher your final score, and the lower your rank (A perfect score of 1000 might earn you a Rank of 1). Keep in mind that there are some circumstances where someone may get more than 1000 points.

Types of Eligible Lists

There are two types of lists used throughout the City, each has its own unique attributes:

  • Discrete Lists - All candidates that are added to a discrete list are added at the same time. Everyone applies through the same advertisement and takes the exam on, roughly, the same schedule. Once the list is adopted it, typically, will not change. Everyone that is placed onto this type of list will remain eligible for the same period of time.
  • Continuous Lists - Continuous lists live on continuously, with candidates being added and expiring off ot the list as frequently as every week. Each candidate is given a personal expiration date based on when they were added to the list, and everyone that is currently on the list is referred to a team when they have an opening. To ensure that everyone is ranked fairly, even when they took the exam at different times, the City uses banded scores for continuous lists. Typically, this means that the score that you see on the eligible list is slightly higher than your actual score.

The Posted List

The City publicly posts a report showing the ranks and scores of everyone that is on an eligible list. Depending on the type of job that you applied for, your name may be included or the list may not have any names at all. For most jobs, the list is posted without any identifying information, protecting the identities of candidates and helping to ensure that the hiring process is as fair as possible. For Public Safety jobs, such as Firefighters and Police Officers, the names of each candidate are included for public review.

Regardless of the type of list, each eligible list includes some important information that you should review, as this information may impact your rights:

  • Post Date - The date that this list was first released to the public. This does not necessarily indicate that the list was ready for use.
  • Job Details - The Classification Code, Title, and Specialty that this list is applicable to. The list may only be used to hire this specific type of job.
  • Duration - How long the list will be good for. Unless extended, the individuals on the list will no longer be eligible after this time.
  • Inspection Dates - These important dates define the period in which the list and its candidates may be inspected for accuracy.

Lists are maintained on the SF|DHR website

Your Rights as an Applicant

Will I be notified directly?


Around the same time that the exam results are posted you will receive an email that gives you all of the information that you need to verify your score.

Some key pieces of information that will be included in the email are:

  • Raw Scores from each exam
  • Averages and other information necessary to calculate your score
  • Any additional points that you were eligible for
  • You Final Score and Rank

The email will also include instructions on how to manually calculate your score. There are a couple of calculation models depending on the type of job that you are applying for.

Can I check for errors?


You have the right to ensure that our math was correct in calculating your score. The email that you received with your score details will also include instructions on how to calculate your score yourself. Note: You must contact the exam analyst that is handling your exam between the Inspection Dates that were posted on the Eligible List.

More information on the rights granted by Civil Service Rules is available in Rules 111-112, 211-212, 311-312, and 411-412.

Adoption of the List

The final step for the eligible list is adoption. The adoption process make the eligible list official and available for departments and teams to hire from. We will not adopt a list until you have had your opportunity to review it and the inspection period has passed. The adoption date is also what sets the expiration date of the eligible list.

List Extensions

In some cases, an eligible list may be extended past its expiration date. If you are impacted you will be notified of this change via email. When a list is extended, you may be referred to a hiring department after the initial list duration, otherwise there is nothing that you need to do in this circumstance.