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Understanding the Murphy Police Hiring Process

Thinking of becoming a Murphy police officer? Here is a step by step guide on what you need to know about the hiring process in order to become a police officer. Including information on the physical ability test, psychological test, drug screen and the polygraph.

Minimum Requirements to become a Murphy Police Officer:

  • High School diploma or G.E.D required;  
  • Must be 20 years and 180 days of age at the time of application
  • If not already licensed as a Texas peace officer, must attend and pass on the first attempt, a Basic Peace Officer Course designated by the Murphy Police Department
  • Valid Texas Class C Driver's License without restrictions (except “A”) required by date of appointment - driving record must be in compliance with City policy
  • Must be a U.S. Citizen. 

After meeting all the requirements to become a police officer, you can take the first step toward preparing for the hiring process. There are many steps to becoming a police officer. The recruitment selection process can take anywhere from a few weeks to months. 

Step 1: Application 

In order to become a police officer you must fill out a general application about yourself.  Applications will only be accepted when a job opening is posted.   The City of Murphy posts job openings for Police Officer positions on the City of Murphy Human Resources Page, Murphy Police Department Website and Facebook Page, Texas Municipal League (TML), Strategic Government Resources (SGR) and the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE).

The job openings will be posted in one of two ways.   Posted for certified only applicants or for anyone who meets the minimum qualifications.  Please read the job posting carefully.  If the opening is posted for certified only and you have not been to a police academy and are not certified, your application will be rejected.   Please see the section of this recruitment page that addresses what a certified applicant is.  

Step 2: Physical Ability Test (rowing machine)

This exam will measure your ability to perform physically demanding tasks that you may encounter on the job. The physical ability test consists of a rowing machine.  The rowing machine is a Concept 2 rower model D.  All applicants must perform a 2000 meter row in a time based upon the individuals sex, age and weight.  

Step 3: Background Check (Personal History Statement)

After completing and passing the physical ability test, Murphy PD will then ask you to fill out a Personal History Statement. This step is to make sure that nothing in your background will disqualify you from becoming a police officer.  You will have 10 business days from the completion of the physical ability test to turn in your personal history statement.  Your personal history statement will be assigned to a background investigator for follow-up. The investigator will look into your history (civil, credit, criminal, driving, employment and military). They may also interview your co-workers, employers, neighbors, references and family members (copies of your diplomas, marriage license, drivers license will all be needed please look over the personal history statement for details).  Please read the instructions carefully.  The PHS must be notarized and delivered in a sealed envelope.  Failure to follow instructions can lead to a candidate being disqualified.

Download Personal History Statement

Step 4: Oral Board 

At this step you will have to sit before a board composed of five individuals including sworn and civilian positions and a non-employee who has a vested interest in the City of Murphy. They will ask you interview questions and provide scenarios that you may encounter on the job. The purpose of the oral boards is to test how well you handle pressure in a controlled environment along with your ability to communicate, and evaluate a situation. This step will only occur if you have passed the physical ability test and the background.  It is recommend that you come to this interview well dressed in professional attire.

Step 5: Human Resource Director and Chief’s Interview

Once you pass the Oral Board you will be scheduled for an interview with the Chief of Police and Director of Human Resources.   This interview will help determine your fit for the City of Murphy.  If you pass this interview you will be scheduled for a one on one interview with the Chief of Police.

Step 6: Chief’s Interview

This interview is designed for the Chief to get to know the candidate and potential new hire.  If the candidate passes this step they will receive a conditional offer for employment from the HR Director.  They will then be required to take a polygraph examination and a psychological exam.   

Step 7: Polygraph Examination 

The purpose of the polygraph test, also known as a lie detector test, is to verify your truthfulness, which will be based on your background report. This test may take a few hours. The polygraph will be administered by a trained polygraph examiner. 

Step 8: Psychological Exam 

There are two parts to this step; an interview with a trained psychologist and a psychological exam. In the interview you may be asked questions about your background, current lifestyle and what your expectations are for the job. The psychological exam, also known as, the police personality test, may include a series of multiple choice exams asking you questions about yourself. The reason police departments give psychological exams is to make sure that you will be able to do the work that is required as a police officer.

Step 9: Medical Exam 

This exam is given to you by a trained medical physician. During this exam the physician will make sure that you are physically fit to be a police officer. This exam may check your height, weight, vision, hearing, blood pressure, drug screen and other medical tests deemed necessary by the City of Murphy. 

Once the candidate passes the polygraph, psychological test, medical exam and the drug screen they are given a full job offer with a start date.  

Certified Applicants:

A certified applicant is a candidate who already holds a Texas Peace Officer License with TCOLE.  Certified Police Officers from other states have the ability to challenge the TCOLE exam and become a licensed Texas Peace Officer.  


Pay:  Beginning of Plan FY24

                                                Recruit        Step 1          Step 2         Step 3         Step 4          Step 5         Step 6

Police Officer              $ 64,938    $67,062    $70,416    $73,937     $77,931    $81,515     $85,591

Lateral Officer Pay:

With concurrence from the City Manager, a new hire, depending upon training, experience and education, may be started at a Step 1, 2 or 3 .  

A new officer with 3 years of experience at an agency of equivalent size and call load as Murphy may begin at Step 2
A new officer with 6 years of experience at an agency of equivalent size and call load as Murphy may begin at Step 3

Parameters for Police Departments with equivalent size and call load.

  1. City Population with the same or greater size than Murphy
  2. Police Department with the same number of sworn employees or greater than Murphy
  3. Police Department calls for service similar to Murphy
    A. Similar types of calls, Robberies, Burglaries, Thefts, Arrests
    B. Similar yearly numbers of calls for service (FBI statistics)
  4. City with at least 5.6 miles of territorial jurisdiction