Date Issued:

August 17, 1992

Date Revised:

April 21, 2010


To identify who determines a promotional examination is appropriate; to define what a promotional examination is; to define who may qualify to compete for promotional examinations; and to document the process of certifying promotional candidates from eligible lists.


County Code Section 3.20, Examinations and Eligible Lists.

Civil Service Rules Section VIII, Promotional Examinations.

Civil Service Rules Section VI.B.3.g, Open Competitive and Promotional and Extra-Help Eligible Lists.

Civil Service Rules Section XII, Layoffs.

Memoranda of Understanding with Employee Organizations, Layoff/Reemployment List Provisions.


PAM Section V.2.A, Hierarchy of Employment Lists.

PAM Section V.3.A, Selective Certification.


  1. When, in the judgment of the Personnel Director or designee, a position can be best filled by promotion from within the County workforce, a promotional examination may be held.

  2. A promotional examination is an examination restricted to current County of Santa Cruz employees in budgeted positions in permanent or probationary status, with the exceptions detailed in II.A.2-4 below.

    1. Candidates in the following categories are eligible to apply for promotional examinations:

      1. Employees in a permanent or probationary status, or

      2. Employees in an exempt (non-Civil Service), budgeted position who were appointed as a result of a competitive exam process as determined by the Personnel Director. (A competitive exam process includes a posting of the job announcement; a filing period; a measurement of the relative job-related knowledge, skills, and abilities of the candidates through one or more tests; and a departmental hiring interview resulting in an appointment of one of the finalists), or

      3. Employees in a provisional or exempt (non-Civil Service) budgeted position who previously held a probationary or permanent status in their previous position in the County, or 

      4. Employees active on a current Re-Employment List.

    2. To qualify for a promotional examination, applicants must also meet the minimum qualifications for the class.

    3. Employees described in A.1-4 above must be in their respective status on all three of the following dates:

      1. On the final filing date of the examination.

      2. On the date the eligible list is established.

      3. On the date of appointment for the promotional class.

  3. At a department's request, promotional candidates may be selectively certified from an eligible list that was established through a competitive examination process. 



  1. Applications received for open competitive and promotional examinations are processed as follows:

    1. At the time applications are received:

      1. Applications are reviewed to see if questions #8 or #9 (specifying current and past employment with the County of Santa Cruz) are checked NO or YES.

        1. If it is an open and competitive examination and the candidate indicates NO to question #8 and #9, then they continue in the recruitment process.  If the candidate indicates YES to question #8 and/or #9 they are checked for Promotional or Re-Employment Eligibility (see flow chart).

        2. If it is a promotional examination, follow the flow chart to determine if the candidate is eligible to continue in the recruitment.

        3. If neither box is checked, then the application is incomplete.  At the discretion of the recruiting analyst, the application may be inactivated and the applicant may be notified they cannot move forward in this recruitment.

    2. Promotional applicants’ eligibility is checked in the Payroll System at the following points:

      1. Upon review of the application and based on the status as of the final filing date.

      2. On the date the eligible list is established.

      3. On the date(s) the eligible list is certified.

      4. On the date the candidate is appointed.