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Civil Service

About 70% of the commonwealth’s jobs are civil service positions.  To begin civil service employment, you need to possess the qualifications required for the jobs you’re interested in and pass an examination or complete an application supplement. 

In many cases, you must also be a current or former Pennsylvania resident.  Each test announcement specifies if residency is required.

Job Opportunities

Visit the State Civil Service Commission’s Web site to see job titles currently open for application. 

Each test announcement provides information about the work, minimum experience and training requirements, examination details, current and anticipated position openings, locations, and more. 

When you successfully complete the testing process, you are considered not only for available current opportunities—but also for future vacancies as they arise.

How to Apply

If you see job titles that interest you and you believe you qualify, we encourage you to apply for as many as you like! 

Both online and paper applications are accepted.  The online process enables you to schedule your own exam and electronically stores all of your application information so you can quickly and conveniently apply for additional job opportunities.

Taking an Exam

About half of all civil service positions require you to take a computer-administered, oral, or performance test at a civil service testing center.  In other cases, you only have to submit your application and an application supplement.  The experience and training information you provide on the supplement is reviewed and a score is assigned.

You will be notified of your test results by the State Civil Service Commission.  Top scoring applicants are considered for job openings before those with lower scores.

You may also retake any open examination following the conclusion of a required waiting period, as specified on the test announcement. 


When a vacancy arises, the hiring agency will send “availability surveys” to people with the highest test scores who are interested in working in the location of the vacancy.  The top candidates who respond will be contacted for interviews.

Additional Resources