Unlike most jobs, becoming a law enforcement officer involves several steps. This process can be completed in as little as a few weeks or as long as six months. These steps may be completed in a different order than listed below but it always starts with an online application.
- Online Application
- Ride along with a Hays Police Officer
- Written Exam
- Physical Agility and Ability Test
- Oral Board Interview
- Background Check
- Interview with the Chief of Police
- Job Offer and Post Offer Tests
Online Application: Applications must be done online at www.haysusa.com/joinhpd. An applicant should complete the application thoroughly, completely, and truthfully. Remember this is the first impression you make to the hiring team. Make sure it is completed in a professional manner with special attention to proofreading and grammar. Applications are only accepted when a position is open.
Ride along with a Hays Police Officer: Applicants are encouraged to perform a ride-a-long with the Hays Police Department. To do this you would call 625-1011 and ask for the on duty Police Lieutenant. Use this time to gain information about the agency, position, and its benefits to help gauge if this would be the right fit for you.
Written Exam: The Hays Police Department uses two written tests.
- The National Police Officer Selection Test (POST) is an entry-level basic skills test that helps ensure that candidates possess the basic cognitive skills necessary to successfully perform the job. The test measures these basic skills: Arithmetic, Reading Comprehension, Grammar and Incident Report Writing. Applicants may purchase a study guide at www.applytoserve.com/study.
- The Nelson Denny Reading Test is used to predict academic success. The test has two sections: Vocabulary and Reading Comprehension. It is a very fast paced multiple choice test. You may also find study information for purchase for the Nelson Denny Reading Test online through a Google search.
There is not a pass/fail score. The written test is a tool used to decide who should move on in the process.
Physical Agility and Ability Test: As an applicant, you are required to complete a two phase test of physical agility and physical ability. Applicants should dress appropriate for the weather and bring any other items deemed necessary by the applicant such as a jacket, sunscreen, drink(s), and/or personal music device for the 1.5 mile run.
- An obstacle course consisting of 7 job-related activities a Police Officer may encounter during their career. These activities include: pushing a vehicle, climbing stairs, walking a beam, climbing over a 5 foot tall wall, dragging a 180 lb dummy, and trigger pull with each hand.
- 1 minute of push-ups.
- 1 minute of sit-ups.
- A 1.5 mile run.
There is no set pass/fail score. Each applicant is encouraged to give their best effort, as it will be used as a tool to decide who should move on in the process.
Oral Board Interviews: Oral Board Interviews are set up for the select few who will continue on in the hiring process. During the oral board interview, applicants should expect to interview in front of three to five members of the administrative staff. Applicants are encouraged to look as professional as possible. You should arrive at least 15 minutes prior to your scheduled interview time & allow one hour total for the interview.
Background Check: You will be asked to provide a variety of documents to a Detective that is assigned to complete your background check. A HPD Detective will complete an extensive background check to verify that you are the right fit for a law enforcement position.
Interview with Chief of Police: The Chief of Police will conduct interviews with a select few of applicants who make it through the oral board interview process. Applicants should bring any questions they may have about the position so the Chief of Police can answer them. This step is about making sure this is a position that would be a good fit for the City as well as the applicant. Applicants are encouraged to dress professionally.
Job Offer and Post Offer Tests: After receiving approval from the City Manager, an offer will be extended to the applicant. If the applicant accepts the position, Human Resources will work with the applicant to set up the post offer tests. The post offer tests include a psychological exam, physical capacity test, medical exam & pre-employment drug test which is required by state law to determine if the applicant has a mental or physical condition that would adversely affect the ability to perform the essential functions of a police officer.