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GIS Technician I/II (Open and Promotional)

County of San Mateo

Redwood City,  California
GIS Technician

The Planning and Building Department is seeking qualified candidates for the position of GIS Technician I/II to provide land use-related support and services to all areas of the department.

The County of San Mateo Planning and Building Department is responsible for planning and regulating land use and development within the unincorporated areas of the County so that diverse and livable communities can thrive. The GIS Technician will be part of Department's diverse team of planners, building inspectors, code enforcement officers, building permit technicians and administrative support personnel that serve the County's residents, businesses, and visitors through the preparation and administration of land use plans and regulations, zoning and building codes, and by reviewing land use proposals to ensure they are consistent with those plans and regulations.

Under general supervision, the GIS Technician I/II will be responsible for: managing the department's GIS database, maintaining and updating data layers and feature classes; develop, maintain, and enforce metadata standards; aid in the transition to the ESRI Local Government Information Model (LGIM); map creation; developing datasets; conducting analysis; support departmental and county-wide GIS related projects; provide general support and basic IT support to internal staff, which may include providing general graphics support; facilitate data sharing with regional partners; and, be willing and able to perform data collection in the field as needed

The duties of this position are at the GIS Technician I/II level. The Planning and Building Department is seeking qualified candidates who have experience and are skilled in database management, transitioning existing data and shapefiles into meaningful feature classes, and helping the Department adopt more mobile GIS capacity. Graphics skills and experience also desirable.

The ideal candidate will:

  • Have strong analytical skills as they relate to spatial concepts, mapping systems, land use, planning and community development and strong interest in life-long learning.
    Possess good oral and written communication skills to be able to work collaboratively with colleagues within and outside the Department.
  • Possess a basic understanding of design principles, color theory, and document management, with the ability to create, edit and lay out maps, reports and publication documents using: ArcMap, Illustrator, InDesign, and Photoshop.
  • Possess an accredited four-year college or university with major coursework in Urban/Regional Planning, Land Use, Environmental Planning, Ecology, Environmental Science, Geography, or other related degree with a minor in management information systems, computer science, geographical information systems, or a related field. Additional related experience may substitute for education requirement on a year-for-year basis, up to four (4) years.
  • Have three (3) years of experience of intensive and progressive experience requiring extensive use of GIS and related tools. May include one (1) year of experience in providing database management technical support specific to the specialty area assigned which includes logical and physical database administration; integration; business intelligence, analytics, and report scripting; and/or data quality and integrity.

Examples Of Duties

  • Development of ArcGIS Online products including Collector forms, online maps, etc.
  • Maintain aspects of project plans relating to GIS and reports status; create and maintain geo-referenced databases from a variety of sources; utilize computer hardware and software to create and update customized maps and reports derived from the GIS.
  • Maintain and operate equipment such as plotters, digitizers and scanners; review and recommend enhancements to improve the GIS system to meet the information needs of user or customers; develop program documentation, user procedures, and instructions; provide assistance to customers and staff for design and production of GIS maps.
  • Create output, such as maps and graphs using computer and geographic information system software and peripheral equipment; troubleshoot GIS related problems; assist county staff in the development of map layers.
  • Maintain and update existing data layers and databases; coordinate with staff and other agencies to obtain updated data; check quality of updated data layers for accuracy and any erroneous information.
  • Compute acreage, plot land descriptions to accurate scale and associated management of metadata.
  • Prepare maps, line drawings, color graphics, charts, graphs and other documents or materials for use in brochures, reports, and presentations to the Board of Supervisors, various commissions, boards or other public agencies.
  • Perform routine maintenance and troubleshooting on mapping equipment and mapping related computer software.
  • Produce datasets that can be evaluated using numerous methods, including quantitative and qualitative analysis using field-measured data.
  • Provide oral and written communication to convey complex GIS topics to internal and external audiences with varying levels of GIS comprehension, including how datasets were generated and what underlying assumptions are implicit in GIS analyses.
  • Write and maintain user and technical operating instructions and documentation; quality documentation and technical reports that will be evaluated for completeness, process flow and references to peer-reviewed literature; provides training to users and other technical staff and advises on best practices.
  • Create and maintain associated metadata to County of San Mateo standards.
  • Stay abreast of new trends and innovations in technology related to County operations; research, recommend, and evaluate vendor solutions and technologies; implement improvements; work with staff to maintain, revise, or improve operations and systems.
  • May serve as technical lead for assigned projects, including gathering user and systems requirements, working with vendors, contractors, project managers, and other project staff, installing, configuring, testing, and providing general technical support related to ArcGIS solutions deployment.
  • Gather and analyze information regarding GIS user system and requirements; consult with users to determine needed data; guide users through data layer selection, mapping order, and map formatting.
  • Design, compile, analyze and prepare geographic data, investigate and analyze alternative methods of obtaining geographic data from a variety of sources, incorporate data into the
  • County-wide GIS base map and deliver results of geographic analysis to users.
  • Participate in regional and County-wide enterprise GIS workgroups.
  • Assist with graphics needs of the Department as needed.


Knowledge of:

  • Principles and concepts of computerized mapping systems and spatial analysis techniques and concepts.
  • GIS and CAD software.
  • Basic principles and methods of cartography, geography and/or engineering drafting, including map projections and scales.
  • Database structure and design.
  • Basic research and report writing techniques.
  • Management information and data communication/translation technology
  • Nomenclature, symbols, methods and instruments used in engineering drafting and mapping.
  • Logarithmic and trigonometric tables, algebra, geometry and their application to mapping work especially in computation of distances, angles and areas.
  • Applicable codes, regulations, policies, technical processes and procedures related to assigned department.

Skill/Ability to:

  • Evaluate information system design and operation and make recommendations for improvement.
  • Organize and input data into the GIS; develop efficient linkages to existing databases; and prepare clear and complete technical reports.
  • Read and interpret planning, engineering and building maps and documents.
  • Use advanced computer assisted drafting and design program software and related computer equipment.
  • Create and publish form letter documents and compile, archive and publish statistical reports using a variety of software programs.
  • Read, understand, apply and explain to others information in county, state and/or federal regulations relevant to local property assessment and taxation, mapping, subdivision and ownership of interests in property.
  • Read, interpret, write and explain detailed boundary descriptions of real property, deeds, and engineering field notes.
  • Organize and complete projects in a timely manner.
  • Develop and maintain a database structure capable of meeting multiple tasks with minimal redundancy.
  • Make mathematical computations.
  • Communicate and work effectively with other county employees and the general public.
  • Understand and follow oral and written instructions and established procedures in the performance of duties.
  • Maintain and prepare accurate records.

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

Education: Bachelor's degree in planning, surveying, engineering, computer science, or a closely related field.

Experience: I-Level: Less than 2 years of experience working with GIS software GIS automated mapping and drafting, civil engineering, land surveying, geography, cartography, or computer science, including project design, coordination and operation. II-Level: Two to three years of relevant experience.

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