Hiring & Employment

How to Become an Albany Police Officer

The Office of Professional Standards is responsible for the processing of prospective employees. 


Candidates must have been legal residents of any one of the following counties for at least thirty days immediately preceding the date of the written examination:

  • Albany
  • Columbia
  • Greene
  • Rensselaer
  • Saratoga
  • Schoharie
  • Schenectady

Preference in appointment may be given to successful candidates who have been legal residents of the City of Albany for at least thirty days immediately preceding the date of the written exam.

Civil Exam

The position of Albany Police Officer is a Civil Service one, and prospective employees must take a civil service exam in order to be processed.

The exam is usually given in November, and inquiries about it should be referred to the Department of Administrative Services in City Hall, located at:
24 Eagle Street
Room 301
Albany, NY 12207
Phone: 518-434-5049

Once the exam grades are tabulated, the preliminary list is forwarded to the Albany City Civil Service Commission, and a list of prospective candidates is then forwarded to the Office of Professional Standards. When the department needs to fill vacancies, the Chief notifies the Office of Professional Standards and processing begins.

Hiring Process

The hiring process begins with a canvass letter sent to those candidates who have passed the exam, in order of score. Candidates must reside and maintain residency in Albany County or adjoining counties of Schenectady, Rensselaer, Greene, Saratoga, Schoharie or Columbia at the time of appointment. Once the canvass period has ended, candidates will be contacted to schedule their Physical Agility testing.  Upon successful completion of the physical agility testing, candidates are then scheduled for an interview with the Office of Professional Standards. Candidates are required to report for their interview with their completed application and several other documents necessary for processing including releases for medical and criminal background information. Candidates who successfully complete the background interview will be scheduled for an interview with a psychologist. Successful candidates are then scheduled for medical examinations.

Background Check

A thorough background investigation by the Office of Professional Standards is conducted. All aspects of the candidate’s background are explored, including but not limited to former and current:

  • Associates
  • Co-workers
  • Criminal History
  • Employers
  • Friends
  • Neighbors
  • Schools Attended

Candidates who meet the requirements and pass a background investigation are then placed on a list for hire, which is forwarded to the Chief of Police. Once sworn in by the Mayor, the recruits are assigned to the Albany Police Department Academy for training before beginning their new careers. Depending on staffing levels, budget constraints, and other issues, candidates who successfully complete all of the requirements are hired according to Civil Service scores in conjunction with Civil Service Law.

Physical Agility Testing


Candidates often underestimate the difficulty of the Physical Agility portion of the police exam. It is a strenuous and challenging test of your physical agility; just as you would study for a written exam, so should you prepare yourself physically for this part of the process. The requirements for males and females can be found below.

To learn more about the physical agility test and its requirements, please view the following video:

Video - Physical Agility Testing 

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Review of Failed Application Processes

Information on candidates who fail any portion of the processing is submitted to the City of Albany Civil Service Commission for review on disqualification.