We are CDSS

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) strengthens and preserves families, encourages personal responsibility, and fosters independencies for children and adults through its programs to enable and elevate communities in California. We accomplish this through the 4,500 employees located in 51 offices throughout the state, the 58 county welfare departments, and a host of community-based organizations.  

In addition to overseeing and administering programs that affect nearly 8 million of California's residents, we are committed to growing the potential of each of our employees in a work environment that values Compassion, Diversity, Simplification, and Service. We believe an inclusive workplace--where the backgrounds, talents and viewpoints of all employees are welcomed--fosters a culture of mutual trust and respect.

Join Our Team with 1-2-3 Easy Steps

Applying for a position with the State can seem complicated, so let us simplify the process with three easy steps.

1. Take Examination/Assessment

Complete the examination/assessment for the corresponding job classification (position type) you are interested in pursuing to establish your eligibility.

To take an exam for a position, create a CalCareer account on jobs.ca.gov. Then find the Examination Bulletins (here) to learn more about the minimum qualifications of the position(s) you are interested in, and information about the needed examination/assessment for each position. Examination Bulletins will detail when and how you may take the assessment.

2. Apply for Jobs

Once you have established eligibility, you may search and apply for a position. Login to your CalCareer account, locate the job posting you want to apply for and click on "Apply for this Job." You may find open positions with CDSS listed here .

Your application is strongest when it has thorough descriptions of all your relevant experience and achievements, and is complete and error free. In addition to the State Examination/Employment Application (STD 678), you may be asked to attach additional documents to complete the application package. If a required document requested on the job advertisement is not provided with the application package, the applicant may not be considered for the job. Additional documents may include:

  • Resume
  • Verification of transcripts and certifications
  • Supplemental Questionnaire
  • Statement of Qualifications (SOQ)

What is a Statement of Qualifications?

The Statement of Qualifications (SOQ) is a narrative discussion of the knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) you possess in relation to the desirable qualifications of the position. The SOQ is used as a screening tool that provides the hiring manager with a sample of your writing skills, style as an employee, and how well you can articulate how your values and background fit the open position.

Helpful Tips

  • Follow all specified instructions and formatting requirements (e.g., font, margins, number of pages)
  • Tailor the SOQ to the job requirements and explain how your enthusiasm and drive for the position makes you the best fit
  • Resumes or cover letters DO NOT take place of a SOQ or the Supplemental Questionnaire
  • Prepare your responses in a concise, complete, and clear manner
  • Grammar, clarity of expression, and legibility are considered in the evaluation process

3. Interview

The hiring interview helps identify the best match for the vacancy. Part of the interview process may include an exercise to determine your knowledge, skills and ability to perform the job. In the analyst classifications, the interview process includes a short writing exercise.

Familiarize yourself with the duty statement, the functions of a program, the mission of the Department, and be sure to communicate why you are choosing CDSS. Do your research on our programs, and be yourself!