Job Description

Overall Job Objective

$58,281.60 - $72,862.40 Annually
San Mateo County, CA
Job Type
Human Resources Department
Job Number
10/23/2018 11:59 PM Pacific

The County of San Mateo is conducting a recruitment for the positions of Accountant I/II.  

In general, accountants perform complex professional accounting work relative to departmental procedures and records, and exercise independent judgment on financial transactions and processes. An accountant position may include the following duties: 

  • Preparing monthly cash reconciliation
  • Reviewing accounting documents for conformance with state and federal regulations
  • Preparing journal entries and reconciliation
  • Planning, directing, reviewing and evaluating the work of fiscal office support staff
  • Creating complex automated financial worksheets
  • Acting as liaison with other County fiscal divisions

The ideal candidate will have the ability to:
  • Multi-task
  • Pay very close attention to detail
  • Communicate effectively both verbally and in writing
  • Develop and maintain working relationships (i.e. with community providers and state staff)
  • Work closely with management to develop the organization's budget

Additionally, the ideal candidates will have broad-based skills including basic auditing skills and have a strong understanding of accounting procedures, process and purposes.

The salary ranges for the two classifications are:  
  • Accountant I: $4,856 - $6,071/monthly
  • Accountant II: $5,680 - $7,098/monthly

NOTE: The established hiring list may be used to fill future Accountant vacancies, including classified, unclassified, full-time, part-time and extra-help/term positions. If you are interested in working for the County of San Mateo as an Accountant you are encouraged to apply now. Unclassified positions are at will positions and are not covered by San Mateo County Civil Service Rules.


Requirements: This classification requires the successful completion of a minimum of twelve (12) semester units of college level accounting coursework. Selected positions may require that the applicant obtain and maintain a security clearance as a condition of employment.

Experience and Education: Any combination of education and experience that would likely provide the required knowledge and skills is qualifying. A typical way to qualify is:

  • Accountant I: Equivalent to graduation from a four-year college or university in accounting, finance, business administration, economics or closely related field. Sub-professional accounting support work may be substituted for the education on a year for year basis to a maximum of two years.
  • Accountant II: Two years of accounting experience preferably in a governmental or a public agency.

Knowledge and Skills:

  • Principles, practices and terminology of general and cost accounting
  • Fund and governmental accounting
  • Business data processing, particularly as related to the processing of accounting information
  • General and subsidiary ledger maintenance
  • Assisting in the preparation of budget and financial reports

Experience developing reports using spreadsheet applications (i.e. Excel) is highly desirable.


Open and Promotional. Anyone may apply. Current San Mateo County employees with at least six months (1040 hours) of continuous service in a classified regular, probationary, SEIU or AFSCME represented extra-help/term position prior to the final filing date will receive five points added to their final passing score on this examination.

The supplemental application form must be submitted in addition to our regular employment application form.

The examination process will consist of a Written Examination (weight: 100%).  Qualified applicants will be notified of the date, time and place of the test which will be given in San Mateo County, California. Applicants must participate at their own expense and must adhere to the dates listed below. 

Requests for alternate test dates will not be granted. Accommodations for special medical conditions will be considered on a case-by-case basis. It is the applicants' responsibility to notify the County Human Resources Department at (650) 363-4303 if appointment notices for the written examination are not received three (3) working days prior to the event.

Depending upon the number of applicants, a screening committee may select those applicants whose education and/or experience appear to best meet the needs of the position. 

IMPORTANT: Applications for this position will only be accepted online.  If you are currently on the County's website, you may click the "Apply Online" button above or below. If you are not on the County's website, please go to  to apply. Responses to the supplemental questions must be submitted in addition to our regular employment application form. A resume will not be accepted as a substitute for the required employment application and supplemental questionnaire.

Tentative Recruitment Schedule
Final Filing Date: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 at 11:59 p.m.
Written Examination: Saturday, November 3, 2018

The Accountant I/II Written Examination is a basic civil service / government accounting examination.  It is a 100-question multiple-choice exam with six subject areas including Fiscal Concepts; Fiscal Analysis; Government Accounting; Bookkeeping; Accounting; and Cost Accounting.

If you would like to prepare for the Written Exam, most libraries and bookstores stock study guides for civil service / government examinations. Applicants are encouraged to review these resource materials prior to taking the examination. While the County does not recommend or endorse specific books, job seekers can ask librarians or store employees for guidance in selecting appropriate study aids.

Applicants with a completed application and with the required accounting coursework will be invited the take the Written Examination which will be given on Saturday, November 3, 2018.  Please make plans to attend the exam now. Because this will be the only testing date, and it has been advertised in advance, it is expected you will have made plans to attend.  

At the County of San Mateo, we welcome and celebrate the diversity of our employees, and strive to create a workplace where they feel valued every day.  County of San Mateo is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer.
Analyst: Sedrick Dixon (100918) (Accountant I/II - E030/E011)

Application Instructions

To learn more about the position and/or to apply, please click the link below. If link is not available, please read the information above for detailed instructions on how to apply.

Apply Online