A 911 dispatcher is responsible for receiving incoming calls from individuals in distress, as well as responding to alerts from alarms or other dispatch systems. They may route the call to the necessary ambulance, fire or police department to provide the proper assistance for the caller. There are numerous reasons why someone would be a 911 dispatcher, even though the position requires a level of commitment and empathy to handle a potentially stressful job.
911 dispatching is a demanding job. It requires rotating shifts, and individuals may be consistently calling under extreme stress (life or death). Repeated contact with individuals in stressful situations can cause a burden on the dispatcher. Working as a 911 dispatcher will help with the turnover rate by keeping more people staffed and equipped to handle calls.
Community Safety and Assistance
When hired as a 911 dispatcher, typically you are working within a certain jurisdiction. Dispatchers can be fulfilled knowing they are dispatching the ambulance, fire departments, and police security to their neighbors. You will have the confidence of knowing you are keeping your community safe and healthy.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, dispatchers only require a high school diploma or GED to be considered for employment. Certain examinations may be required, depending on your location. There may a certain amount of words per minute you must be able to type. Someone that may have little to no college experience can have the ability to start a satisfying and rewarding career. Some jurisdictions require you to be either 18 or 21 to be hired as a dispatcher, which is also beneficial to young adults looking to start a career. The Bureau of Labor Statistics mentions dispatchers can start with a salary of $33,000 per year.
Life-Changing Skills and Training
Some dispatchers are required to learn CPR, which can save someone's life. You may also need to receive consistent training to further assist with the needs of the community at the time. For example, if there is an outbreak of a disease or ailment, you may be trained on how to properly assist someone afflicted with the disease. Multitasking, communication, operating under extreme pressure and processing information calmly and analytically are all skills that can be taken into other areas of your life.