Internet Exam - Frequently Asked Questions

What is an Internet exam?
An Internet exam is an online exam given by the State Personnel Board (SPB). The Franchise Tax Board currently uses Internet exams for the following classifications:

  • Compliance Representative
  • Information Technology (IT)
  • Tax Auditor
  • Tax Counsel
  • Tax Technician

Who can take an Internet exam?
Anyone who meets the minimum qualifications of the classification being tested may apply for an Internet exam. You do not have to be a State employee. See the exam bulletin or SPB class specification to see if you meet the minimum requirements.

Where can I take an Internet exam?

You can go to the Online Exam page on the SPB Website.

When are Internet exams available?
The following exams are available on a continuous basis:

  • Compliance Representative - Tri-Agency Compliance Exam
  • Tax Auditor
  • Tax Counsel (This exam is for the California Attorney (Staff Counsel) classification, but used by FTB for appointment of Tax Counsel positions.)
  • Tax Counsel III (This exam is for the California Attorney III - Specialist (Staff Counsel III) classification, but used by FTB for appointment of Tax Counsel III positions.)
  • Tax Technician

IT exams are given periodically:

What are the exam components?
The exams consist of:

  • Approximately 100 questions.
    • The exam questions are based on experience and education. They are meant to gauge your knowledge and experience as they relate to the knowledge, skills, and abilities of the classification. When answering the questions, be sure to reference ALL your experience (life and work, paid or volunteer) and education (include correspondence courses, technical training, on the job training, etc.).
  • Administrative pages, such as:
    • Standard State Application (STD 678)
    • Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) information
    • Location and work preferences

At the end of the exam, you will be asked to complete a recruitment survey.

Allow approximately 90 minutes to complete the exam. We strongly recommend that you download the questions, prepare your responses, and then return to the Internet to complete the exam.

When will I know my score?
You will receive your test score as soon as you complete the exam. However, it may take up to one week for your exam ranking to update on the hiring list since SPB updates the exam list every Tuesday.

How long will I remain on the eligible list?
You will remain on the list for one year from the date you complete the exam.

How often can I take the Internet exam?
For most Internet exams, you are eligible to take the exam every nine months. Since you remain on the list for twelve months, there may be a window of time in which you appear on the list twice. However, the system will remove your earlier score after 12 months. Important: Check the exam bulletin to see how often you can take an exam and how long the list will be valid.

Is there a limit on the number of times I can take an Internet exam?
No. However, for most exams you may not take the same exam more than once every nine months. Important: Check the exam bulletin to see how many times you can take an exam.

After passing the Internet exam, will FTB contact me when there are job openings?
Usually, no. Once you have passed most Internet exams, you must apply for current job openings. You can subscribe to be notified of job openings at FTB and SPB. However, after some Internet exams you may receive Employment Inquiry Notices (STD 628) asking if you are interested in a position. Follow the directions on the notice. If you do not respond, we will assume you are not interested and take you off the hiring list.

How do you select candidates for hiring interviews?
We select the most qualified candidates for interviews by reviewing applications and resumes based on the skills, knowledge, and abilities necessary to that position and posted on the job opportunity notice.

Is a State application (STD 678) required to participate in the Internet exam?
Yes. The State application is required and included as the first component of the Internet exam.

Where can I find out more information on FTB’s hiring process?
See How to Apply.

Who can I contact if I have more questions on the Internet exam?
Contact a recruiter.

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