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Posted: 3/28/2009 10:35:25 AM EDT
Just wondering, I'm really unhappy with my current job, and a few people have told me to try out being a dispatcher. I know the husband of the boss, so I think I'd have a decent chance of getting a shot at it. If I remember right you go to the police academy for 6 weeks of training. Anyways, thoughts? Advice? Any info would help...
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 10:40:49 AM EDT
I am on the opposite side of the radio. So I have no direct experience as a dispatcher.

I would imagine that it is a very stressful job. Who gets no thanks and a ton of shit from LE/EMS/FF.

Not something I personally would do as a career.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 10:47:21 AM EDT
Worked the last six months in the CC before they retired me. More stress than any I ever had on the street, and gave me a new respect for the lasies who worked in there. Seems you're either built for that job, or not - no in betweens.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 11:00:25 AM EDT
I did it for 10 years part time on my shift days off from the FD. I really liked it until the comm centers in the county combined and they put the idiots running the largest one in charge. They didn't like letting telecommunicators using their common sense to help callers and the guys in the field. Ended up quitting after the change. They lost about 30% of the employees from the county shortly after.

Really depends on the center. The job is very stressful. But occasionally you will get to talk with people you really know you made a difference in their lives without even seeing them in person. If you take the job, remember to ask for help if something from calls starts bothering you. And try to keep the perspective that the person you are talking to is a family member. Treat them as such. Even if they are a jackass. Everybody has one in the family.....

We did fire, ems and law. We used EMD and EFD when I left and they were getting ready to start EPD. Lot to learn but is can really be fun sometimes. I have all kinds of stories to tell at parties now about the nuts I have talked with.

Took a 911 hang up call from an address one time, ani-ali showed his name as being Billy Badass...
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 11:03:11 AM EDT
My wife does. She said its very gratifying at times, and frustrating at others. She hates lazy coworkers and stupid callers, but it is some pretty good job security and decent pay.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 11:05:12 AM EDT
I know the counties I work with have high turnover rates, always have openings and see new faces when I am there. Pay usually starts in the $9-12 an hour range. You work weekends, nights, holidays, etc. Dealing with people on 911 calls would require more patience than I have, you really have to be focused to keep track of the calls and officers/fireman/ems you are directing while sticking to correct procedures. Some people like it, like any other job some people are wired for it and some are not.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 11:21:54 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2009 11:26:54 AM EDT by Herrin811]
I did it for roughly 7 years before finally going fulltime FD.....Alot of good times, and good people.....Alot of shit and moron dirtbags too......I just couldnt let myself sit at a desk for 20+ years.....Also, consider this: sworn or civilian??? Much more respect, better pay, ARMED, more training, transfer to road, and other perks to being sworn....Civilian for 20 would SUCK!


Around here radio is an entry-level position....Several, but not most end up moving on to patrol, jail, or like me FD....Some cities, however, radio os a promotional position, kinda like the ease into retirement for the veterans.....

Yeah theres always fun and a few good jokes.....Ssomebody run IL/Z69901 and see who it checks to
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 2:18:33 PM EDT
I think the pay starts somewhere around $10.50-$11.25 an hour. I don't know if your sworn in or not.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 2:35:06 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 2:38:00 PM EDT
20 yr dispatcher....pay is decent here in MI.

But expect a lot of this:

Originally Posted By hungrymonkey:
I would imagine that it is a very stressful job. Who gets no thanks and a ton of shit from LE/EMS/FF.


Link Posted: 3/28/2009 2:40:42 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 5:17:31 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Tango7:

Originally Posted By morrie419:
20 yr dispatcher....pay is decent here in MI.

But expect a lot of this:

Originally Posted By hungrymonkey:
I would imagine that it is a very stressful job. Who gets no thanks and a ton of shit from LE/EMS/FF.



Agreed. Those of us on the street - especially those of us who have run a mic - appreciate the hell out of a good dispatcher , but we will the ones that are just there for a check.




If I didn't enjoy it....I wouldnt still be doing it. Doesn't matter what the job is, you can really tell when that person is just there for the check....

It does take a certain type of person to do it. There is a lot of turnover as well.

Link Posted: 3/28/2009 5:26:14 PM EDT
Originally Posted By morrie419:
20 yr dispatcher....pay is decent here in MI.

But expect a lot of this:

Originally Posted By hungrymonkey:
I would imagine that it is a very stressful job. Who gets no thanks and a ton of shit from LE/EMS/FF.




Yep my wife is a dispatcher for the same FD I work for and I give her shit all the time!

She does love the job. I just hate the fact that she gets to tell me where to go at work as well as at home...
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 5:39:57 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Pred:
Just wondering, I'm really unhappy with my current job, and a few people have told me to try out being a dispatcher. I know the husband of the boss, so I think I'd have a decent chance of getting a shot at it. If I remember right you go to the police academy for 6 weeks of training. Anyways, thoughts? Advice? Any info would help...



See if she would be allowed to do a "ride along" in dispatch for a shift. See what goes on. She can decide before she wastes her time in an academy, only to quit on the first day. It happens.

Link Posted: 3/28/2009 7:08:26 PM EDT
I've been doing it for a few years. It has its ups and downs. If you can deal with a lot of idiots and have some patience, go for it. The pay's not bad at all, neither. We take calls for the PD and local FD.
Link Posted: 3/29/2009 6:53:09 AM EDT
I did that for a while,try it to see how you handle it.
Me it caused me to Quit LE FOREVER....
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