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Career Opportunity

Citywide Accountant III Examination - Controller's Office (1654)

Recruitment: RTF0132448-01152476

Published: April 19, 2023


Karena Phung -

Apply using SmartRecruiters, the City and County of San Francisco's application portal Learn More

Department: Citywide
Job class: 1654-Accountant III
Salary range: $115,934.00 - $140,894.00
Role type: Permanent Civil Service What does this mean?
Hours: Full-time
Exam type: Class Based Test
Rule: Rule of 10 What does this mean?
List type: Combined Promotive and Entrance


3/28/2023: This announcement has been amended to reflect the filing deadline extension of 4/20/2023.


San Francisco is a vibrant and dynamic city, on the forefront of economic growth & innovation, urban development, arts & entertainment, as well as social issues & change. This rich tapestry of culture and ideas is sustained by our City's commitment to heighten the quality of life for the diverse population of San Franciscans and residents of the greater Bay Area. Our employees play an important role not only in making our City what it is today, but also in shaping the future of San Francisco.

Specific information regarding this recruitment process are listed below:

  • Application Opening: March 1, 2023
  • Application Deadline: April 20, 2023
  • Compensation Range: $107,978 to $131,248

Role description

Under general direction, this class performs complex accounting duties including but not limited to: assists in providing directives and training to enhance operation efficiencies; reviews, analyzes, inputs, and posts citywide and departmental accounting transactions; participates in year-end closing activities and analyses; monitors fund expenditure projections to actual, identifies and resolves spending issues; provides management with status reports on accounting and financial activity; presents and explains accounting activity to financial and non-financial managers, co-workers and clients interprets and explains existing accounting, auditing and fiscal policies, procedures and transactions; prepares and reviews detailed complex financial reports; monitors department’s financial activities; provides accounting services and technical assistance to resolve issues.

  1. Performs complex accounting functions in connection with budget preparation, purchasing activities, payroll analysis and grants management.
  2. Processes and pre-audits accounting documents and transactions in conformance with established procedures and controls.
  3. Reviews, prepares, reconciles and supervises the preparation of complex financial reports.
  4. Reviews, reconciles and audits accounting records of receipts, disbursements and encumbrances to ensure fiscal accuracy and control.
  5. May supervise subordinate staff by delegating, planning, directing and assigning accounting work. Includes training, coaching, and evaluating staff performance.
  6. Performs fiscal year-end closing activities.
  7. Analyzes, recommends new or updated fiscal policies, procedures and internal controls and re-aligns business practices to improve operations.
  8. Maintains current knowledge of applicable ordinances, rules, regulations, policies and standards.
  9. Presents and explains reports to financial and non-financial managers, co-workers, and clients.
  10. 1May coordinate, define, develop and maintain financial data extracts, reports and interfaces.
  11. Participates in the identification of functional processing and reporting requirements, end-users testing and documentation, implementation support for financial processing and reporting systems.
  12. Participates in the identification, creation and maintenance of accounting codes and structures to ensure accurate recording, reporting and control in financial systems.
  13. Performs special projects and other duties as assigned.

How to qualify

These minimum qualifications establish the education, training, experience, special skills and/or license(s) which are required for employment in the classification. Please note, additional qualifications (i.e., special conditions) may apply to a particular position and will be stated on the exam/job announcement.

Education and Experience:

1. A baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university, preferably with major course work in accounting, finance, business administration, or related field. Such education must include eighteen(18) semester units or twenty-four (24) quarter units of coursework in accounting. AND

Four (4) years of professional accounting which includes analysis or problem solving. Experience must include: Working with an automated financial system, (preferably a government system) performing difficult and responsible accounting, as well as preparing financial records and reports. OR

2. City and County of San Francisco Employees with four (4) years of professional accounting experience including experience as a 1652 Accountant II.


A Master's degree in accounting, business administration, computer information systems, public policy, or a closely related field may be substituted for one year of work experience.

Verification of Experience 

Applicants may be required to submit verification of qualifying education and experience at any point during the recruitment and selection process. If education verification is required, information on how to verify education requirements, including verifying foreign education credits or degree equivalency, can be found at

Note: Falsifying one’s education, training, or work experience or attempted deception on the application may result in disqualification for this and future job opportunities with the City and County of San Francisco.

All work experience, education, training and other information substantiating how you meet the minimum qualifications must be included on your application by the filing deadline. Information submitted after the filing deadline will not be considered in determining whether you meet the minimum qualifications.

Resumes will not be accepted in lieu of a completed City and County of San Francisco application.

Applications completed improperly may be cause for ineligibility, disqualification or may lead to lower scores

Notes regarding Verification of Education and Experience:

1. A degree from a U.S. or foreign college or university not currently listed on accreditation websites may require that an evaluation of the degree must be received before placement on the eligible list.  The evaluation must state that the degree has equivalency as described in the minimum qualifications.
For information on "How to obtain equivalency certification", please visit:

 2. Experience must be professional in level and scope.  Experience as an Account Clerk, Sr. Account Clerk, Principal Account Clerk, for example, may not qualify unless it meets the guidelines defined in Civil Service Rule 109 and 110.

 3. Incumbency in Class 1652 Accountant II or admission to a previous examination administration does not guarantee admission in this process.  This determination is governed by the terms of this announcement.

What else should I know?

How To Apply

Required Documentation:

  1. Resume
  2. Cover Letter
  3. Transcript(s) confirming accounting courses completed - please note only accounting coursework 3 units or more are qualifying. QuickBooks and Excel courses are not qualifying. 

Applications for City and County of San Francisco jobs are only accepted through an online process. Select the “I’m Interested” button and follow instructions on the screen.

Applicants may be contacted by email about this recruitment and, therefore, it is their responsibility to ensure that their registered email address is accurate and kept up-to-date. Also, applicants must ensure that email from CCSF is not blocked on their computer by a spam filter. To prevent blocking, applicants should set up their email to accept CCSF mail from the following addresses (,,,,,,,,,,,,,, and 

Applicants will receive a confirmation email that their online application has been received in response to every announcement for which they file. Applicants should retain this confirmation email for their records. Failure to receive this email means that the online application was not submitted or received. 

Having Trouble? If you are having trouble with the application, please visit Smart Recruiter's FAQs or email  It is suggested you use Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge web browser to submit the application. 

Minimum Qualification Supplemental Questionnaire (MQSQ)
Once the application is closed, qualified candidates will be sent a Minimum Qualification Supplemental Questionnaire (MQSQ) to complete online. 

Written Multiple-Choice Examination (Weight 50%): Candidates who meet the minimum qualifications will be invited to participate in a written multiple-choice examination designed to measure their relative knowledge, skill and ability levels in job- related areas including:  Comprehensive knowledge of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP); comprehensive knowledge of Government Accounting; Analytical and Decision-Making Ability; and Ability to communicate clearly and effectively in writing.

Qualified applicants will be notified by email of the exact time, date and virtual location of the examination.  Requests for an alternative test date may be considered in limited circumstances and must be submitted to the analyst listed in the announcement within five (5) calendar days of the test date.  Candidates must pass the written exam in order to move forward in the examination process. 

Oral/Performance Examination (Weight 50%):
Candidates who achieve a passing score on the written examination will be invited to participate in a Oral/Performance Examination designed to measure their relative knowledge, skill and ability levels in job-related areas including: Skilled in the use of personal computers; Interpersonal Skills; Ability to communicate clearly and effectively in writing; Oral communication Skills; Analytical and Decision Making Ability.   

Total weight for both Written and Oral/Performance components: 100% 

Candidates must achieve passing scores on all selection procedures in order to be ranked on the eligible list.

Tentative Written Examination Administration Dates: Early May 2023

Tentative Oral/Performance Examination Administration Dates: Late May 2023/Early June 2023

A passing score must be achieved on the exam component in order to continue in the selection process and be placed on the eligible list.

Additional selection processes may be conducted by the hiring department prior to making final hiring decisions

Score Report/Eligible List
A confidential eligible list of applicant names that have passed the civil service examination process will be created, and used for certification purposes only. An examination score report will be established, so applicants can view the ranks, final scores and number of eligible candidates. Applicant information, including names of applicants on the eligible list, shall not be made public unless required by law. However, an eligible list shall be made available for public inspection, upon request, once the eligible list is exhausted or expired and referrals resolved. The eligible list/score report resulting from this civil service examination process is subject to change after adoption (e.g., as a result of appeals), as directed by the Human Resources Director or the Civil Service Commission.

Certification Rule: Rule of Ten (10)
Eligible List Duration: Twelve (12) months.

The duration of the eligible list may be extended with the approval of the Human Resources Director.

Information Regarding Employment with the City and County of San Francisco:

Terms of Announcement and Appeal Rights
Applicants must be guided solely by the provisions of this announcement, including requirements, time periods and other particulars, except when superseded by federal, state or local laws, rules or regulations.  [Note: The correction of clerical errors in an announcement may be posted on the Department of Human Resources website. The terms of this announcement may be appealed under Civil Service Rule 110.4.  Such appeals must be submitted in writing to the Department of Human Resources, 1 S Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94103-5413 by close of business on the 5th business day following the issuance date of this examination announcement.  Information concerning other Civil Service Commission Rules involving announcements, applications and examination policies, including applicant appeal rights, can be found on the Civil Service Commission website at


CONDITION OF EMPLOYMENT:  All City and County of San Francisco employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment. Someone is fully vaccinated when 14 days have passed since they received the final dose of a two-shot vaccine or a dose of a one-shot vaccine. Any new hire must present proof of full vaccination status to be appointed. Any new hire who will be routinely assigned or occasionally enter High-Risk Settings, must provide proof of having received a COVID-19 booster vaccine by March 1, 2022, or once eligible.

The City and County of San Francisco encourages women, minorities and persons with disabilities to apply. Applicants will be considered regardless of their sex, race, age, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition (associated with cancer, a history of cancer, or genetic characteristics), HIV/AIDS status, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, military and veteran status, or other protected category under the law.