Sample Dispatcher Qualifications


In order to have an application accepted for public safety dispatcher, many agencies set minimum standards for skills, abilities, prior experience or education.

The following sections were taken from actual job announcements for public safety dispatcher and are typical of the qualifications that a public safety dispatcher is required to meet in order to successfully be hired.


Knowledge of standard radio and telephone communications receiving and transmitting equipment, standard broadcasting procedures and rules, operation of common radio dispatch equipment, public safety classification codes, basic provisions of the vehicle and penal code.


Ability to interpret and give both verbal and written instructions. Excellent verbal and written communication skills. Bilingual skills strongly desired. Ability to speak clearly and concisely over the radio and telephone. Prioitization skills and be multi-task oriented. Ability to make sound decisions using all available information. Knowledge of FCC laws, regulations, procedures and practices applicable to basic radio-telephone operation. Sklll to accomplish tasks in a controlled, effective manner while working under stress. Ability to read maps. Ability to develop and maintain cooperative working relationships with co-workers and customers. Keyboard skills.

Knoledge of operational procedures and methods used in operation of a public safety communications center, general functions of public safety agencies, use and proper care of computer and radio-telephone equipment, geography of the county/city. Working knowledge of FCC regulations applicable to the operation of public safety radio-telephone communications equipment, all CAD files, commonly-used law violations. Some knowledge of supervision and training practices. Skill to accurately type a minimum of 25 wpm, operate a CAD computer, keep accurate records of information received via computer, operate a variety of communications equipment. Ability to remain calm, think clearly, quickly assess and evaluate situations, organize thoughts and respond quickly in emergency and stressful situations, effectively coordinate emergency dispatch of public safety equipment and personnel, prepare work schedules for all shifts for routine asisgnments and emergency situations. Prepare written reports and trainee evaluations, recommend training methods, interpret and apply rules and regulations, establish and maintain cooperative working relationships, communicate clearly and effectively with the general public, safety officials and other governmental and private staff persons. Take and transmit clear and complete direction and information. Perform a variety of tasks simultaneously.


Knowlodge of: modern office practices and procedures, CAD equpment operation; proper English usage, diction, grammar, spelling, punctuation, and demonstrated proficiency, alphabetic, chronological and numeric filing systems, techniques, procedures and methods used on the operation of a highly technical communications center; community resources; emergency response procedures; department procedures and activities; effective communication techniques; specialized police network computer operations; the law enforcement culture and its nuances; the rank structure within a police agency; automated systems dedicated to law enforcement; maintenance of SOP integrity while working under emotional conditions; various penal, vehicle, health and safety codes as well as alpha mnemonics; map reading, listening and interrogation techniques to control direction and length of telephone calls; personal computer operating systems and software aplications.

Skill to: speak and hear clearly; demonstrate excellent interpersonal skills including communicating effectively with those contacted in the course of work; analyze situations quickly and make sound decisions in emergency and routine situations; perform two or more tasks concurrently; input and retrieve comupter data quickly; learn the techniques, procedures and methods used in the operation of a highly technical communications center; quickly read and retain information; quickly interpret maps and floor layouts; relate effectively to co-workers; recognize and discern various emotional states when dealing with citizens in person and while on 911, emergency and business lines; recognize the voices of field units; use patience and tact in dealing with the public; quickly operate elecronic data processing equipment and radio consoles; perform a number of tasks simultaneously; listen and interrogate callers to control the direction and length of telephone calls; read and disseminate court orders and warrant information; utilize personal computers and computer software to perform word processing and spreadsheet functions. The ability to understand and speak Spanish is preferred.


The ability to interpret and give both verbal and written instructions. Excellent verbal and written communication skills. Bilingual skills strongly desired. Prioritization skills and be multi-task oriented. Ability to make sound decisions using all available information. Knowledge of FCC laws, regulations, procedures and practices applicaable to basic radio-telephone operations. Skill to accomplish task in a controlled, effective manner while working under stress. Ability to read maps. Ability to develop and maintain cooprative working relationships with co-workers and customers.


Knowledge of emergency dispatching methods using various communications equipment, including CAD or similar equipment. Ability to operate CAD equipment under stress, type at a corrected speed of 30 words per minute. Skill in establishing and maintaining effective working relationships with a variety of individuals, including police and fire personnel, other city employees and the public. Skill in reading, writing and communicating in English at an appropriate level.