Employment Standards

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Employment with the City of Ames is based on the merit principle. This means that hiring decisions are made through an objective process of evaluating candidates' qualifications in order to select those who best match the requirements of vacant positions. Most positions with the City of Ames are under Civil Service as provided by the Code of Iowa; however, the selection process is similar for non-Civil Service categories.

The employment process begins with an announcement for a recruitment for the job classification in which there is a vacant position.  These announcements are posted on City bulletin boards and on the City's web site.  Notices are also mailed to organizations and agencies that are sources of potential applicants.  In the case of Civil Service positions, an examination results in an eligibility list which has a duration of one year.  Vacancies in a job classification are filled from the specific eligibility list for that classification so long as there are names of eligible candidates remaining on that list during the one-year period.  State law restricts eligibility lists to a maximum of forty (40) candidates.  This restriction does not apply to job classifications exempt from Civil Service.

Announcements contain a basic description of the job, minimum qualifications, the application procedure, and information about the examination.  Please note that minimum qualification requirements must be met by all applicants.  Equivalent education, training or experience may be considered, if specified in the announcement.

Each applicant must complete an on-line employment application and submit it by the recruitment closing date together with any additional required documentation.  Any arrangements for exception to this policy must be made by contacting the Human Resources Department prior to the closing date.  Applications become a part of the record of each recruitment and examination.  As such, they cannot be kept "on file" for future consideration for other jobs. 

When filling out an application, please provide us with sufficient information about your education, experience, and other pertinent data necessary to demonstrate that you meet the announced minimum requirements.  The section pertaining to previous work experience is extremely important.  You must provide the name and address of your previous employers, dates worked, and specific job duties of each position.  A resume may also be submitted but cannot be substituted for the employment application.

Applicants meeting minimum qualifications will be eligible for the examination, which may vary depending on the nature of the job and the number of applicants.  In addition to evaluation of training and experience, an examination may include a written test, performance test, structured interview, oral board, or a combination of these.  Successful completion of each step may be required in order to participate in succeeding steps. After completion of the examination, you will be notified of your score and whether you are certified as eligible by the Civil Service Commission.  The final hiring decision is made by the head of the department and approved by the City Manager.

While our employment process is structured, you may be assured that all applications receive careful consideration by the staff of the Human Resources Department.  We appreciate your interest in employment with the City of Ames and will be happy to assist you with your application and to answer any questions you may have. 

Smoking Policy

Pursuant to the Iowa Smokefree Air Act (www.smokefreeair.iowa.gov), this policy applies to all employees of the City of Ames. Smoking is not allowed in any City building, vehicle, or equipment (mowers, backhoes, etc.). Smoking is not allowed on the grounds of any public building, building complex, parking lots, or in any vehicle (personal or City owned) located in the parking lots of public buildings or facilities.  Smoking will not be allowed at work sites, even if those are not on the grounds of or within a publicly owned building. Employees whose work site is not a fixed location (utility, street, park, cemetery, line workers, etc.) may not smoke at these sites. Locations where employees work on any given day are their “work sites”.

Employees may be permitted to smoke during break periods provided by City policy or bargaining agreements if department/division work rules/requirements allow for the employee to leave the work site and/or prohibited areas to an area where smoking is not prohibited, such as sidewalks; however, employees may not take smoke breaks in addition to such designated rest breaks nor take longer than provided for breaks to accommodate the time required to get to an area where smoking is permitted.  The City of Ames is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. We encourage applications from women, minorities, and persons with disabilities.


The City of Ames participates in E-Verify and will provide the Social Security Administration (SSA) and, if necessary, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with information from each applicant’s Form I-9 to confirm work authorization.  All candidates who are offered a position with the City of Ames must complete Section 1 of Form I-9 along with the required proof of their right to work in the United States and proof of their identity on their first day of employment.  Please be prepared to provide required documents as soon as possible after the job offer has been made.  For additional information regarding acceptable documents for this purpose, please contact Human Resources at 515-239-5199 or go to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services web page at: http://www.uscis.gov.