This post provides detailed information on the police dispatcher job description, including the key duties, tasks, and responsibilities they commonly perform.
It also highlights major requirements that you may be expected to meet to be hired for the police dispatcher role.
What Does a Police Dispatcher Do?
Police dispatchers are emergency response personnel who handle urgent calls from the public to facilitate police intervention.
They work in a police department where their job description entails receiving distress calls and reporting to appropriate patrol officers to initiate emergency response.
Police dispatchers are responsible for initiating mobilization of police officers to accident or crime scene.
They utilize two-way radio systems to convey information useful in facilitating response of law enforcement agents or other emergency personnel.
They also maintain record of all calls during a shift.
Police dispatchers in performing their duties evaluate calls to determine if a situation calls for emergency or non-emergency response.
They usually obtain from callers information regarding their identity, location and nature of a situation.
This information is relayed to police officers who use it in coordinating their response.
As part of their responsibilities, police dispatchers determine if the attention of emergency teams such as firefighters, medical responders, and tow trucks will be required at an accident scene.
They respond to police queries about driver’s license validity and warrant information.
Their role also involves monitoring and recording of the location of patrol police officers to ensure effective dispatch.
In fulfilling their work description, police dispatchers interact with distressed callers to provide them OTP (over-the-phone) assistance and guidance through a difficult situation.
They maintain a calm disposition while interacting with overwhelmed callers in order to obtain useful information and proffer effective recommendations.
They also operate a range of communication equipment, among which include radio console, computer systems, broadcaster, and transmitters.
As part of their duties, police dispatchers prepare written and digital reports of call handling and dispatch activities.
They input and retrieve from computer database information concerning stolen properties or wanted persons.
They also maintain confidentiality of highly sensitive materials and information.
To work as a police dispatcher requires at least a high school diploma and experience in telecommunications.
Some of the qualities you will need for success on this job include communication, IT, and decision-making skills.
Police Dispatcher Job Description Example/Template
The police dispatcher job entails various functions. The job description example below shows typical tasks, duties, and responsibilities for the role:
- Operate radio and communications systems to relay information to police officers
- Receive distress calls from the public to facilitate help by contacting appropriate law enforcement agency and providing OTP solutions
- Maintain an up-to-date knowledge of local laws, police terminologies, policies, and procedures
- Conduct inspection of work equipment to initiate maintenance or repairs as required
- Monitor and record the location of patrol officers so as to dispatch teams according to their proximity to an accident scene
- Obtain useful caller information such as caller identity, location, and nature of situation
- Maintain radio transmission logs, as well as up-to-date record of calls and complaints
- Assess calls to determine the urgency of a situation and necessary response requirements
- Search databases to obtain information regarding wanted persons or stolen property
- Provide over-the-air emergency medical assistance to callers
- Monitor alarm systems to detect building intrusion and fire emergency
- Read and interpret maps to determine the location of an incident and provide directions
- Forward inquisition calls to appropriate agency, department or personnel
- Monitor radio frequencies of public works department and other civil organizations to stay abreast with current safety situation
- Scan maps and status charts to determine the availability of an emergency unit.
Requirements – Skills, Abilities, and Knowledge – for Police Dispatcher Job
If you are seeking the job of a police dispatcher, the following are the major requirements you will be expected to satisfy:
- Education and Training: To become a police dispatcher, you require at least a high school diploma and training in communication or peace standards. Most police departments require dispatchers to possess certification from the National Crime Information Center. Having a college degree in computer science, criminal justice or communications provides a competitive edge and increases job prospects
- Communication Skill: Police dispatchers are proficient in clearly communicating useful information to callers and to patrol officers
- IT Skill: They are well versed in using computer systems, radio and telephone to obtain, relay, and store information
- Decision making Skill: They are able to analyze a situation to proffer recommendations effective in ensuring public safety
- Pre-employment tests: To be hired for this position usually requires taking pre-employment tests and passing it. learn about job assessment tests and how to top the competition.
The sample police dispatcher job description provided in this post is useful to recruiters in creating effective work description for hiring and assigning tasks to their newly hired personnel.
Also, people interested in the dispatcher job will find information in this article useful in learning more about what the role involves, and the duties they will be expected to carry out when eventually hired as a police dispatcher in future.