TO: Department and Agency Directors of Human Resource, Personnel and Affirmative Action Officers, Equal Opportunity Specialists, Diversity and Inclusion Specialists

FROM: Jessica Rowe, Director of Staffing Services

SUBJECT: Professional Career Opportunities (PCO) Eligible Lists

DATE: September 27, 2019

This General Information Bulletin (GIB) explains the policies for appointment from the eligible lists established from the PCO examination. It replaces GIB #17-04, Professional Career Opportunities (PCO) Eligible Lists.

Eligible Lists

Five (5) types of eligible lists have been established from the results of the PCO examination, and the policies for appointment vary between lists. Four (4) of these types of lists are Generalist Job Titles lists and one (1) is a Select Job Titles list. The last page of this GIB lists the various eligible lists.  Below are descriptions of the types of eligible lists:

Ordering Certifications through ELMS

To order a certification in ELMS, enter the appropriate Title Code and select the list number associated with that title. Procedures for requesting a Diversity Management list are described below.

Note that if a title series has a list for the trainee title and for the journey level title and one of those lists is exhausted (has less than three acceptors for the position) and the other is not exhausted, the viable list must be considered.  

Requesting a Diversity Management List

Information found in this section supersedes GIB 18-02

The Department of Civil Service (Department) established a Diversity Management list for the Generalist Job Titles, Diversity Management lists for the language parenthetic lists for the Generalist Job Titles, and Diversity Management sublists for the various Select Job Titles.

The intent of the Diversity Management Option is to provide agencies with qualified candidates to fill positions in which the ability to perform the established duties entails an understanding of diversity management and equal opportunity principles.  Once an agency has identified such a position, the agency Human Resources Office may request a Diversity Management eligible list for the subject title.

To qualify for placement on Diversity Management eligible lists, candidates must have met the following minimum qualifications:

Examples of a qualifying Group or Organization include, but are not limited to, an equal employment opportunity or civil rights organization, a sorority or fraternity, a minority neighborhood association or organization whose mission or goal is to promote practical solutions that address the challenges faced by individuals due to their racial, ethnic, and cultural background; gender; socioeconomic class; sexual/affectional orientation; or disability (e.g. Centro Civico, NAACP, Out & Equal, the Aids Council).

Agencies may use either the base list for the title, or the Diversity Management list for the title, to fill a position.  For example, when an agency is using the Select Job Titles list to fill a Jobs Program Specialist position, the agency can use either the Jobs Program Specialist base list for the title or the Jobs Program Specialist – Diversity Management list for the title dependent on the needs of the position.  Agency HR Offices are advised to retain all documentation pertaining to the position and list canvass.

Email Canvasses

Applicants were instructed to provide their email address and to keep their email address current so the Department and other State agencies can communicate with them.  To expedite canvassing of the list, agencies may email canvass the eligibles in accordance with General Information Bulletin #19-04, Email Canvassing Through ELMS:

Minimum Qualification Review

Minimum qualification review for PCO list appointments, including for the Select Job Titles, has been decentralized to agencies.  Agencies must thoroughly review the qualifications of all appointees prior to appointment and documentation must be kept by agencies.

Applicants must hold a bachelor’s or higher-level degree in any field or have indicated they will receive one on or before the date listed on the examination announcement, to be eligible for a PCO list appointment.  Eligibles must have a bachelor’s or higher degree prior to appointment. Agencies must verify the qualifying degree for the PCO list was received on or before the date listed on the examination announcement. To determine if the college attended meets accreditation requirements, click on the following link: Link), select the “Search By Accrediting Agency” tab and scroll through the Institutional accrediting agencies to find the Regional accrediting agencies.

Restricted Eligibles

Eligibles who indicated they do not yet hold a bachelor’s or higher degree have been given a non-certifiable restriction on the PCO eligible list(s). Also, eligibles who indicated they will receive a master’s or higher degree after the date listed on the examination announcement are restricted from appearing on the Select Job Title lists if they need the master’s or higher degree to qualify for the title.  In each of these cases, the restrictions will be removed on the 15th of the month prior to the month they indicated they will receive their degree.  Please note that the list restrictions on May graduates will be removed on April 15.

Foreign Degrees and Coursework

Where the applicant indicated a foreign degree(s), the Department requested the applicant provide us with an evaluation of the foreign degree(s) and advised the applicant they need to provide agencies the evaluation of the foreign degree(s) at the interview.  If an applicant indicated a foreign degree and did not provide a foreign degree evaluation from an acceptable company or the evaluation of the foreign degree(s) did not show the degree(s) was the equivalent of a bachelor’s or higher-level degree in the United States, the applicant will not appear on the certification until the applicant provides us an acceptable evaluation of their degree. If an applicant did not indicate on their PCO application that they have a foreign degree, the Department could not follow this process. Therefore, the eligible’s name could appear on a certification.

Applicants were instructed to provide course by course evaluations of their foreign coursework at the interview if they used foreign credits to qualify for a Select Job Title.  It is the agency’s responsibility to review the type of college degree and/or the course by course listing to determine if the eligible is qualified for Select Job Titles that require a specific college degree or college course work.

If an eligible cannot provide an acceptable evaluation of their foreign degree(s) or the course by course evaluation needed for a Select Job Title, agencies can code them temporarily unavailable (TI) for the life of the cert.  Be sure to explain this carefully and encourage the eligible to get the needed evaluations.  Information about the companies that provide the evaluations is available in the PCO FAQs on the PCO Homepage at

DQ Process for PCO Titles

The Department has developed a process to quickly determine whether someone should be disqualified for appointment to a Generalist Job Title or a Select Job Title.  However, since the eligible is entitled to due process, the eligible must remain active and be coded as a non-select (NS) on the list certification while the Department conducts its review.

If an agency determines an eligible does not hold a bachelor’s or higher-level degree, the agency should contact their representative in Staffing Services and provide documentation to support this finding.  The representative from Staffing Services will contact the eligible and if the eligible cannot provide proof of a qualifying degree, the staffing representative will notify the PCO Unit, requesting to remove or restrict the individual from eligibility on PCO lists.

For Select Job Titles that are in multiple agencies, if an eligible does not have the qualifications to be on a Select Job Titles list, the agency must contact their representative in Staffing Services and provide documentation clearly demonstrating why the person is not qualified.  The documentation must include results from the interview with the eligible, or responses to an agency questionnaire asking about the minimum qualifications.  A resume from the eligible is not sufficient. 

Upon receiving sufficient agency documentation, the Department will contact the eligible and remove them from the list in question.  If the agency documentation is not sufficient, the Department will request proof from the eligible that he/she is qualified and provide time for the eligible to provide the necessary proof.  If it is found that the eligible is qualified, the agency will be notified and instructed to consider the eligible.  If it is found that the eligible is not qualified, the agency will be notified, and the applicant will be removed from the eligible list.

Agencies may access instructions on how to work with the Department to disqualify eligibles from their lists in the Examinations section of the DCS Business Suite at

Transfers and Other PCO Appointments

The standard rules for transfer described in the Voluntary Transfer Checklist shall apply for transfer into and between PCO titles, except as described below.

Transfers will be allowed directly to the appointment title from titles within two salary grades. For example, a G-11 employee can only be transferred to a trainee title within two grades of the employee’s current title.  Advancement after transfer to a trainee title requires a year as a trainee unless the transfer is without a change in the employee’s title.

The determination as to how the impact of a transfer between PCO titles during the first year of the traineeship will affect the length of the traineeship is at the agency’s discretion.  Time served in the original title may be considered credited time if both traineeships go to the same level.  For example, time served as an Education Trainee 1, which goes to Education Program Assistant, G-14, cannot be credited toward the first year of a traineeship to a G-18 title.

Transfer between any of the PCO titles where the employee’s title changes during the second year of the traineeship will require that the transferee complete a full year in the new Trainee 2 title prior to advancement unless, at the acquiring agency’s discretion, the employee is early advanced.  If the transferee does not change titles with the transfer, the agency has the discretion to credit time served as a Trainee 2.

Transfer between any of the PCO titles during the first year in the journey level title will require the transferee to complete the probationary period required by Rule 4.5 (b) (4) of the Rules for the Classified Service.

Civil Service Law Section 70.4 transfers will be allowed based on a current or past PCO or PCT passing score or a current or past PATT passing score (if the transferee holds a bachelor’s or higher-level degree) to Generalist Job Titles and Select Job Titles as long as the transferee did not fail a more recent holding of the PCT, PCO, or PATT.  For transfers to Select Job Titles, the transferee must meet the minimum qualifications for the Select Job Title.  There is no requirement that the transferee previously submitted the PCO questionnaire.  Prior to appointment, the agency must submit to their representative in Staffing Services Form ATT-00271, a NYS-APP and other supporting documentation showing the eligible’s qualifications, and an attestation the eligible meets the minimum qualifications.  Documentation must be kept at the agency.

Early advancements during the traineeship will only be allowed in accordance with SPMM Advisory Memorandum #15-01:  A Trainee 2 who was advanced after completing year one of the traineeship and who transfers to the same or a different title, whether in the same or a different agency, may be considered for early advancement to the full title after six months of service subsequent to the transfer.  The agency must send an email to their Staffing Representative prior to submitting the NYSTEP transaction for the early advancement attesting that the Trainee 2 is performing the full range of duties and responsibilities of the G-18 position.

Advanced Placement from PCO Lists

All advanced placement decisions are at the agency’s discretion.  By allowing advanced placement entry at the Trainee 2 or journey level title, we expect agencies will be better able to attract candidates for their positions.  Advanced placement qualifications are available in the Examinations section of the DCS Business Suite at

When using the Trainee lists, the standard rules of reachability still apply; however, the level at which the traineeship is filled can be determined by the qualifications of the candidate selected.  For example, if experience is required for advanced placement and the top three acceptors have no experience, agencies must fill the vacancy at the Trainee 1 level by selecting one of those acceptors.  Agencies cannot skip three Trainee 1 level acceptors to reach a candidate who meets the qualifications for advanced placement at the Trainee 2 or journey level.

Advanced placement appointments are made directly from the eligible list to the Trainee 2 or to the journey level title.  Once a permanent trainee appointment has been made, the agency cannot give the employee an advanced placement appointment in that series; the appointee must progress through the traineeship.  For example, if an appointee has nine months of the twelve months of experience needed for advanced placement, the appointee cannot be advanced after three months.  Also, if an agency appoints someone as a Trainee 1 and later finds they could have advanced placed the appointee as a Trainee 2, an advanced placement appointment to the Trainee 2 will not be allowed.

The advanced placement qualifications for all PCO titles are viewable in the Examinations section of the DCS Business Suite.  Experience must be professional experience.  Experience in a clerical, secretarial, or administrative title cannot be considered as professional.  For example, work as a Head Clerk (Personnel), Payroll Examiner, or Payroll Specialist is not professional experience and cannot be used for advanced placement.

An eligible list for the journey level title does not block advanced placement appointments, except that a promotion list for a title must be exhausted before advanced placement from a PCO list to the same title can be allowed.

Process for advanced placement appointments:

Effect of an Appointment from a PCO List

For Generalist Job titles, an appointment from one of the Generalist lists will inactivate an eligible for appointments at that grade level from all of the Generalist lists, with the provision that inactivation will be dependent on the salary grade of the journey level of the traineeship.  For example, if an eligible is appointed to a traineeship leading to G-16, they will be inactivated on the Generalist lists for all traineeships leading to a title at G-16 and below but will remain active for all traineeships leading to a title above G-16.


PCO Lists

List Name

PCO - Generalist Job Titles (Generalist)

PCO - Generalist - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - Chinese Language

PCO - Generalist - Chinese Language - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - Creole Language

PCO - Generalist - Creole Language - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - Farsi Language

PCO - Generalist - Farsi Language - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - French Language

PCO - Generalist - French Language - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - Italian Language

PCO - Generalist - Italian Language - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - Korean Language

PCO - Generalist - Korean Language - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - Manual Communication

PCO - Generalist - Manual Communication - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - Polish Language

PCO - Generalist - Polish Language - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - Russian Language

PCO - Generalist - Russian Language - Diversity

PCO - Generalist - Spanish Language

PCO - Generalist - Spanish Language - Diversity

PCO - Select Titles

Information and Contacts