All About Emergency Dispatchers
Occupation Description Operate radio, telephone, or computer equipment at emergency response centers. Receive reports from the public of crimes, disturbances, fires, and medical or police emergencies. Relay information to law enforcement and emergency response personnel. May maintain contact with caller until responders arrive.
List of Emergency Dispatcher Job Duties
- Enter, update, and retrieve information from teletype networks and computerized data systems regarding such things as wanted persons, stolen property, vehicle registration, and stolen vehicles.
- Record details of calls, dispatches, and messages.
- Receive incoming telephone or alarm system calls regarding emergency and non-emergency police and fire service, emergency ambulance service, information, and after-hours calls for departments within a city.
- Provide emergency medical instructions to callers.
- Monitor alarm systems to detect emergencies, such as fires and illegal entry into establishments.
- Question callers to determine their locations, and the nature of their problems to determine type of response needed.
What an Emergency Dispatcher Should Know
Below is a list of the skills most Emergency Dispatchers say are important on the job.
Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Coordination: Adjusting actions in relation to others’ actions.
Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Other Emergency Dispatcher Job Titles
- Dispatch Technician
- Police Radio Dispatcher
- 911 Emergency Dispatcher
- Dispatch Specialist
What Kind of Emergency Dispatcher Job Opportunities Are There?
In the United States, there were 98,600 jobs for Emergency Dispatcher in 2016. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 8.2% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 8,100 new jobs for Emergency Dispatcher by 2026. The BLS estimates 10,000 yearly job openings in this field.
The states with the most job growth for Emergency Dispatcher are Utah, Texas, and Nevada. Watch out if you plan on working in Vermont, Maryland, or District of Columbia. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.
Do Emergency Dispatchers Make A Lot Of Money?
The salary for Emergency Dispatchers ranges between about $26,590 and $63,930 a year.
Emergency Dispatchers who work in California, Alaska, or Washington, make the highest salaries.
Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Emergency Dispatchers in different U.S. states.
|State||Annual Mean Salary|
|District of Columbia||$50,600|
What Tools do Emergency Dispatchers Use?
Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Emergency Dispatchers:
- Microsoft Excel
- Microsoft Word
- Microsoft Office
- Microsoft PowerPoint
- Web browser software
- Corel WordPerfect Office Suite
- National Crime Information Center NCIC database
- Law enforcement information databases
- Computer aided dispatch software
How do I Become an Emergency Dispatcher?
Individuals working as an Emergency Dispatcher have obtained the following education levels:
What work experience do I need to become an Emergency Dispatcher?
Who Employs Emergency Dispatchers?
Emergency Dispatchers work in the following industries:
More about our data sources and methodologies.
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