1649 Accountant Trainee (Citywide)

Recruitment #PEX-1649-106337


1649 Accountant Trainee Program

(1649 Accountant Intern Program)

APPLICATION FILING PERIOD: July 31, 2020 to August 31, 2020



Written Exam: Late September 

Performance Exercise: Early/Mid October 

Panel Interview: Late October/Early November




The 1649 Accountant Trainee Program also known as the 1649 Accountant Intern Program was established to ensure excellent performance in the City and County of San Francisco's Accountant Series. Participants in this Program are appointed at the entry-level of the Accountant classification series. Overall responsibility and administration for the 1649 Accountant Trainee (Intern) Program for the City and County of San Francisco resides with the Office of the Controller, by delegation from the Department of Human Resources.

1649 program participants are appointed to civil service permanent-exempt job Class 1649 Accountant Trainee (Intern) and enter the 18-month training program as full-times employees. 1649 trainees participate in two 9-month rotations, typically with two different City departments.   


1649 trainees (interns) receive a comprehensive foundation in governmental accounting policies, procedures, and best practices.  The Program consists of a combination of workshop training and on-the-job experience as a functioning accountant in the City, and are mentored by higher-level, experienced accountants in various City Departments.  

Topic areas of training include — Peoplesoft Financials, General Ledger, the Budget Process, Purchasing, Accounts Receivable, Accounts Payable, Financial Analysis and Reporting, and Vouchers and Expenses.  

In addition to the technical and functional knowledge, the 1649 Accountant Program provides professional development learning opportunities in communication skills, presentation skills, as well as presentations from the Treasurer/Tax Collector, the Civil Service Commission, the Office of Public Finance, and more.  


The Program also pairs trainees with seasoned supervisors and mentors to provide them with support and coaching throughout their training. Progress through the Program is evaluated through regular performance evaluations. 


After the 18-month 1649 Accountant Trainee (Intern) Program ends, successful trainees are promoted to the Permanent Civil Service 1652 Accountant II classification. Assignment locations may vary for each rotation of the Program, including 1652 placements.



  • Earn while you learn as a full-time City employee with comprehensive benefits, including medical, dental, and retirement.
  • Cohort experience to develop a professional network throughout the City.
  • Practical knowledge and experience in the relationship between governing bodies and strategic partners.
  • Support and mentorship from accounting professionals and Program alumni.
  • A comprehensive understanding of governmental financial management and how to support the operational needs of the governmental entity of San Francisco.
  • A working knowledge of accounting topics and City processes to become fully functional well-rounded accountants with the City upon successful completion of the 1649 Program.

To successfully complete the 18-month training program, 1649 Program participants will present self-chosen topics to the 1649 Steering Committee. 


Essential duties include, but are not limited to, the following:


  • Participate in structured job training experiences.
  • Attend classroom-style workshops and complete online training programs related to citywide accounting functions during the training program.
  • Perform a variety of work in the following fields:
    • Record and process a variety of accounting data into accounting systems;
    • Analyze transactions to insure proper recordation;
    • Prepare and maintain expenditures and budgetary control accounts;
    • Prepare reports on status of such accounts;
    • Maintain accounting records relative to payroll accounts, processes rate changes and payroll deductions;
    • Distribute personnel service costs to appropriate accounts;
    • Assist in the maintenance of accounting systems;
    • Reconcile internal departmental records with Controller’s and other agency reports;
    • Process and clear encumbrance documents and vendor payment documents, assists in external reporting projects/requirements as assigned.
    • The incumbent must be able to communicate all phases of the Accounting Cycle to a variety of audiences clearly and effectively, and they will also perform related duties as assigned.
    • Overtime may be required.
  • Make formal presentations to City departments and the Steering Committee.
  • Perform related duties and responsibilities as assigned  

Please visit the program web page for more details: SFController.org/1649-accountant-intern-program

Minimum Qualifications

Possession of a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university with eighteen (18) semester units or twenty-four (24) quarter units of coursework in Accounting at the time of appointment.


Please note: Only Accounting courses that are 3 units or more will be counted. We will NOT accept any related coursework (e.g. Excel, QuickBooks, finance, economics or math courses).


Desirable Qualifications:

  • Professional accounting work experience which includes analysis or problem-solving. Experience should include: Working with an automated financial system (preferably a government system), performing difficult and responsible accounting, reporting work, as well as preparing financial records and reports.
  • Proficient Skills using various computer software programs including Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word.
  • Experience establishing, promoting and maintaining professional, cooperative-working relationships with those contacted in the course of work.
  • Experience speaking to a variety of audiences regarding financial information and related complex matters.

Note: Falsifying one’s education, training, or work experience or attempted deception on the application may result in disqualification for this and future job opportunities with the City and County of San Francisco.

How To Apply

Please include the following items with your online application:  

1. All University transcripts with University Letterhead in PDF format. NOTE: Verification of qualifications will be collected prior to appointment for all finalists. Verification of education in the form of a college transcript must be submitted with the application. Unofficial transcripts are acceptable but must contain the college letterhead. Please include all transcripts from the colleges you have attended (i.e. junior colleges and universities). Copies of diploma(s) will not be accepted in lieu of transcripts. Course descriptions may be requested. Applicants who possess a degree that is from a foreign college or university will be required to provide an equivalency certification of the degree. Equivalency certifications and all transcripts must be submitted upon completion of the Written Examination in order to move forward in the process.   

2. Updated Resume

3. Cover letter stating why you are interested in the 1649 Accountant Trainee (Intern) Program. 


You will be able to upload transcripts to the online application O

  • Email transcripts to 1649.con@sfgov.org  (Please include "1649-2020, LAST NAME, FIRST NAME" in the subject line)
  • Failure to submit verification of education or partial transcripts will result in rejection of your application.

Applications for City and County of San Francisco jobs are only accepted through an online process. Visit www.jobaps.com/sf to register an account (if you have not already done so) and begin the application process.

  • Select the desired job announcement
  • Select “Apply” and read and acknowledge the information
  • Select either “I am a New User” if you have not previously registered, or “I have Registered Previously”
  • Follow instructions on the screen 

Computers are available for the public (from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday) to file online applications in the lobby of the Dept. of Human Resources at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor, San Francisco.


Applicants may be contacted by email about this announcement and, therefore, it is their responsibility to ensure that their registered email address is accurate and kept up-to-date.  Also, applicants must ensure that email from CCSF is not blocked on their computer by a spam filter.  To prevent blocking, applicants should set up their email to accept CCSF mail from the following addresses (@sfgov.org, @sfdpw.org, @sfport.com, @flysfo.com, @sfwater.org, @sfdph.org, @asianart.org, @sfmta.com, @sfpl.org, @dcyf.org, @first5sf.org).


Applicants will receive a confirmation email that their online application has been received in response to every announcement for which they file.  Applicants should retain this confirmation email for their records.  Failure to receive this email means that the online application was not submitted or received.


All work experience, education, training and other information substantiating how you meet the minimum qualifications must be included on your application by the filing deadline. Information submitted after the filing deadline will not be considered in determining whether you meet the minimum qualifications.


Applications completed improperly may be cause for ineligibility, disqualification or may lead to lower scores.

If you have any questions regarding this recruitment or application process, please contact the exam analyst, Karena Phung by email at karena.phung@sfgov.org

Selection Plan

The examination process consists of the following three (3) components:

I. Written Examination: Candidates who meet the minimum qualifications will be invited to participate in an online written multiple-choice examination. Qualified applicants will be sent a web link via email that will allow them to take the test online.  Qualified applicants will be notified by email of the exact time and date of the examination.  Candidates must have access to a computer and reliable internet connection to participate in this exam.  Requests for an alternative test date may be considered in limited circumstances and must be submitted to the analyst listed in the announcement within five (5) calendar days of the test date. 


Candidates will be tested to determine relative knowledge, skill and ability levels in job-related areas, including but not limited to: Knowledge of accounting principles (including government accounting) and practices; Ability to make accurate mathematical calculations; Ability to analyze data; Reading comprehension and grammar & spelling. Admittance to previous examination administrations is no guarantee of admittance to the current process. Candidates who are invited to participate in the written exam are not guaranteed advancement to the next phase of selection, as the written exam will be evaluated on a pass/fail basis.


II. Performance Exercise: Qualified candidates who receive a passing score in the written examination may be invited an online Performance Exercise. Candidates will be tested on Ability to use personal computers (including Microsoft Excel and Word); Knowledge of accounting principles (including government accounting) and practices; Ability to analyze data; and Written communication skills. Candidates who are invited to participate in the performance exercise are not guaranteed advancement to the next phase of selection, as the performance exercise will be evaluated on a pass/fail basis.


III. Oral Interviews: After completing and passing the online performance exercise, candidates will be invited to participate in an online oral interview and evaluated by the Steering Committee, who will determine final selection in the Program.


Tentative Testing Schedule:

Written Exam: Late September

Performance Exercise: Early/Mid October

Panel Interview: Late October/Early November

The tentative start date for the Program is January 11, 2021


Advancement to 1652 Accountant II: After successful completion of 1649 Accountant Trainee (Intern) Program, qualified candidates will apply to participate in the selection process for Class 1652 Accountant


II. Promotion to Class 1652 Accountant II is not automatic and may be affected by the availability of open requisitions or other factors.


Verification: Applicants will be required to submit verification of qualifying education. Information on how to verify education requirements, including verifying foreign education credits or degree equivalency, can be found at http://sfdhr.org/index.aspx?page=456

Conviction History

As a selected candidate for a job, you will be fingerprinted, and your fingerprints will be sent to the California Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The resulting report of your conviction history (if any) will be used to determine whether the nature of your conviction (or arrest, in limited circumstances) conflicts with the specific duties and responsibilities of the job for which you are a selected candidate. If a conflict exists, you will be asked to present any evidence of rehabilitation that may mitigate the conflict, except when federal or state regulations bar employment in specific circumstances, such as:

  • Candidates for positions with the Unified School District and the Community College District may be disqualified from consideration should their conviction history not meet the standards established under the California Education Code.
  • Candidates for positions with the Recreation and Park Department may be disqualified from consideration should their conviction history not meet the standards established under California Public Resources Code 5164.

Having a conviction history does not automatically preclude you from a job with the City.

If you are a selected candidate, the hiring department will contact you to schedule a fingerprinting appointment.

Disaster Service Workers

All City and County of San Francisco employees are designated Disaster Service Workers through state and local law (California Government Code Section 3100-3109). Employment with the City requires the affirmation of a loyalty oath to this effect. Employees are required to complete all Disaster Service Worker-related training as assigned, and to return to work as ordered in the event of an emergency.


General Information about City and County of San Francisco Employment Policies and Procedures
Important Employment Information for the City and County of San Francisco can be obtained at http://sfdhr.org/information-about-hiring-process or hard copy at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor.


Copies of Application Documents:
Applicants should keep copies of all documents submitted, as these will not be returned.


Right to Work:
All persons entering the City and County of San Francisco workforce are required to provide verification of authorization to work in the United States.


Applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum eligibility requirements for this job announcement can find information on requesting a reasonable ADA Accommodation at: 
Information regarding requests for Veterans Preference can be found at: 


Micki Callahan
Human Resources Director
Department of Human Resources
Recruitment ID Number: 


All employees hired on or after January 10, 2009 will be required (pursuant to San Francisco Charter Section A8.432) to contribute 2% of pre-tax compensation to fund retiree healthcare. In addition, most employees are required to make a member contribution towards retirement, ranging from 7.5%-13.25% of compensation. For more information on these provisions, please contact the personnel office of the hiring agency.

For more information about benefits, please click here.


Click on a link below to apply for this position:

Fill out the Supplemental Questionnaire and Application NOW using the Internet.
View and print the Supplemental Questionnaire. This recruitment requires completion of a supplemental questionnaire. You may view and print the supplemental questionnaire here.

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