Thread: Turned away

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    Default Turned away

    I saw several candidates turned away at the written test for San Jose this morning because they had only brought their EMT certification not the required "EMT Card". Several others were running around trying to find their picture ID and a place to make a copy as requested in the information they were given.

    San Jose orals could start as early as March 27th.

    It continued with much of the same in the second session. One guy had his name changed and did not have the court documents to prove it. Many who didn't have the right transcripts. One candidate who's father is a firefighter was turned away for not having all the correct paper work. Scene two dad to the rescue as they closed the doors with the goods. Pretty cool.

    The were the usual characters with everything in dress code present including great looking suits for going to orals, I just got off duty uniforms and yes shorts and flip flops even though it was raining.

    With 3 more sessions Wednesday, including another 7:30 am there should be more glamour. I confirmed with an HR person that around 3,000 applied.
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    Reporting live Wednesday at 0 dark thirty from the San Jose Written

    I wish I had stock in Kinkos. Again this morning candidates arrived without photo copies of their transcripts, EMT cards and picture ID's. Then in a dead run they were off the 3 blocks to Kinkos. Some never returned. I heard a siren once. Maybe someone needed 02?

    Cut the Cord:

    I've seen no less than 15 parents in line with their precious one. They just didn't drop them off. They walked them through the line right up to the front door hugged and kissed them good by like it was the first day of school. When are you old enough to not have mommy and daddy hand carry you through life?

    Where's the hustle?:

    You know you're late and many are high stepping it going to the whip around the club house turn to make the wire. Then, there are those who just drag their feet and mosey on in as if they don't have clue what a little hustle is all about.

    This wouldn't have worked in Phoenix a few years ago. Just as the big hand on the clock hit 8:00 am the training officer slammed the door leaving at least 50 candidates locked out running at a dead run. Parking was tough. Candidates didn't allow enough time. Some arrived in cabs. The training officer bellowed, "If you can't make it on time, we don't want you!"
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    From the trenches mid day:

    No you're not in a play off game or in the world series. Shave

    If you want to make an impression go ahead and wear your pants real low so your crouch is just a few inches off the ground and your under ware shows. I saw an HR rep roll her eyes. Same goes with wearing the sweat shirt with the hood pulled up over your head or this might be a hold up stocking cap pulled down over your ears.

    Even though you're late doesn't mean you can beach your car with the medic sticker in the window and the "Free Tibet" bumper sticker anywhere you want.
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    Last session at 5:30 pm. Maybe I'm wrong?

    No there isn't a contest to see who could wear the biggest diamond looking earrings in both ears for men.

    Even though you both drove up from LA you don't get to test with your buddy at 07:30 am when your test is at 5:30 pm.

    Even if you took your test before you buddy doesn't mean you can skate board out side the test until he is finished.

    One candidate came out asking where he could make a copy of his resume to attach to the PHQ (Personal History Questionnaire)? Please pray for this person.

    Do you think that doing pot on a ski trip two years ago even if I'm currently a firefighter would be a factor on the PHQ? Hmmmmmmmm Gee, I'm not Mother Teresa.

    Carry some cash in case of an emergency. One candidate came hoofing it out to the entrance to the written test heading to their car because they didn't have any money to pay for copies of documents they forgot to bring photo copies. When the candidate came back 5 minutes later out of breathe ( can you really pass the CPAT and academy) they were directed across the street to a another copy store. Standing almost directly in front of the store the candidate turned around with arms and hands in the air yelling where? Many yelled "Sir Speedy" pointing to the store right in front of this candidate. The candidate spun around several times pointing in several directions looking for clues. Is this the candidate we are looking for that can follow simple directions and instructions?

    Yes, cleavage works every time, especially with a push up bra. Where's you mother?

    Maybe I'm wrong?
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    Pretty funny stuff, good things to think about before tests, even though most fall into common sense.


    One Question: Would you wear a suit to the written test? I understand you don't want to show up unpresentable, but is a suit necessary for just the written. Just asking to make sure in advance.

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    Default Suit???

    but is a suit necessary for just the written. Just asking to make sure in advance.

    I don't think a suit is necessary but a few candidates wear them and they do make an impression. I would wear something comfortable. A collared shirt with a nice pair of pants. Not the I'm heading off to a reality series, I'm dressed for ganster rap or off to the beach after the written. Chau.
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    I wore a nice outfit to take a written, shirt/tie and khakis, and had the same effect as when I wore my volunteer shirt, shorts, and just tennis shoes.

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    Get off the soapbox bob. I bet you stand there proud as a peacock in your uniform harassing some 18 year old kid for not having a copy made.

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    IMHO, to get this job you need to use ever edge out there (within reason of course) to show that you are serious and ready to do the job. I don't think there is ever an ideal candidate; we all may falter in some area, while others excel.

    Not to get too controversial, but recently I read a sports article about how an NFL draft prospect is not taking the audition/interview process seriously. The writer said that the NFL is like Halle Berry on Oscar night, she can choose any dress from any designer she wants and most consider it an honor just to be considered. The writer concluded that since this prospect was not taking the process seriously, he hurt his chances to get drafted higher (i.e. bigger $$$).

    As a candidate it is my job from beginning to end, to "Wow" my potential employer. I want to excel at every aspect, even the smallest aspects of the process. It means thinking and preparing for everything, every minute detail and circumstance needs to be prepared and analyzed. I want the "Wow" factor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kingofdahill
    Get off the soapbox bob. I bet you stand there proud as a peacock in your uniform harassing some 18 year old kid for not having a copy made.
    Kingofdahill... you are wrong.

    Part of being a member of the fire service is being able to follow directions and orders.

    Everyone appying should have "all their ducks in a row" prior to going in for the examination.. that measn having the necessary paperwork with youi, proper ID's, certifications, cards, etc.

    Remember the 6 P's..

    Proper
    Prior
    Planning
    Prevents
    Poor
    Performance!

    Capt. Bob...

    The "cut the cord" part of your post is a hoot! I worked a few CPAT tests (back when called it the "strength test" for the State's Department of Personnel Administration, aka Civil Service.

    Some firefighter candidates showed up with their parents... One actually asked if she could follow her son around each station "just in case he needed encouragement"

    Re: "proper dress".. a couple of candidates came to the CPAT wearing suits, when the notice to appear recommended sweatpants and sweatshirts for the CPAT!
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    Default following directions

    I'm in the process of testing in Northern VA right now and while attending a written test for an unnamed department we were instructed to bring, ID, and two completed forms (personal information releases) that had been notorized. Several of the candidates in front of me who had not followed directions, showing up with blank and un-notorized forms, were then allowed to have their forms filled out an notorized on site by a notory the department had brought in for that purpose. Not a big deal but it rubbed me the wrong way that candidates that weren't able to follow basic instructions were allowed in.

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    Out of 3000 applicants, how many showed up, how many passed the written exam?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fargo2722
    ...allowed to have their forms filled out an notorized on site by a notory the department had brought in for that purpose. Not a big deal but it rubbed me the wrong way that candidates that weren't able to follow basic instructions were allowed in.
    Most likely the department notary is a name that they recognize in the recruitment section. Although the 'slack' applicants are not 'officially' labeled, they are easy to find!
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    Another candidate that I keep having a visual on is the guy who looked like a gym monkey. Yea we know you work out. Do you have to wear what used to be a T-shirt but now has no sleeves, and is cut off at mid chest to show off your steroid looking muscles?

    You think candidates were turned away because they didn't show up with the required documentation, many could be eliminated because of the the information they put down on the Personal History Questionaire.

    On a previous posting one candidate wrote:

    I was thinking that the PHQ was more of just a thing that they gave us so they dont have to worry about having a bunch of canidates fill them out later when it comes to backrounds. I dont really see how you could use the PHQ to score.

    Don't be surprised if this isn't how they trim the list down. Many departments (including LA City) are using this system.

    The Preliminary Background Questionnaire is designed to eliminate candidates early on in the hiring process before they spend lots of time and money on those who they would tank later.

    Threshold

    If you get eliminated because of the PHQ, you crossed a threshold. So where’s the threshold? Did you answer yes to a question on drug use? How many times? Answer yes to a question on how many times you had drank more than the legal limit and drive? Driving or criminal record? Bad credit?

    There is no question that candidates should lead their lives as if their future consideration of being hired as a firefighter depended upon it.

    To keep up on the San Jose testing process go to the web site below.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptBob
    Even though you're late doesn't mean you can beach your car with the medic sticker in the window and the "Free Tibet" bumper sticker anywhere you want.
    No kidding! Last month during our written exam (which was held in the convention area of a local hotel & casino) we had security approach us about a vehicle parked in the fire lane displaying volunteer firefighter plates and asked us if we knew whose vehicle it was. We responded "NO" and told them to "ticket it or tow it" your choice. Amazing how some people try to abuse what little priveleges they think they have. A common thought among most of us proctors, "do we want this kind of individual working for us"???

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    I would have called out the license number in front of the entire crowd and had him get up in front of everyone and tell him that his car just got towed away.
    What a loser!

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    Default San Jose Orals

    Now the game gets real. The written scores are out. Since one hundred percent of your score to get hired for San Jose is in the oral board how are you going to stun the oral board panel to convince them to give you the badge over the other candidates? Bottom line most candidates don't do enough interviewing to get good at it. This is also true for any job interview. You've got around 20 minutes for a 25+-year career. Just a point or two either way will make the difference in you going forward in the hiring process.

    A candidate wrote:

    As you have said before oral board is the most important step in the process and the step that is least prepared for. Well I can support your statement. As I watched the recording of my score for LA City (reading upside down) I noticed 60's and 70's on the scores of those that interviewed before me. I would assume there were about 25 names on the sheet prior to mine. Rich

    One of the best things you can do before game day is practice your answers with a hand held tape recorder to hear what the panel is going to hear out of your mouth. The vast majority of candidates I talk to have never heard what they sound like. A tape recorder will help you get your timing, inflection, volume, where to cut out material, get rid of the uh’s and other pause fillers, or to find out if you really sound like Donald Duck. To keep up on the San Jose oral boards and hiring process check out the web site below.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BCLepore
    I would have called out the license number in front of the entire crowd and had him get up in front of everyone and tell him that his car just got towed away.
    What a loser!
    Either that or call his license number in front of everyone and when he stands up ask him how he would report to duty with no vehicle? Then when he looks at you very puzzled tell him his vehicle was towed and hand him the citation for parking in a firelane.

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