Job Opportunity – 911 Dispatcher. Another job option that can take very little formal education is a 911 dispatcher. What it does take is a very strong ability to multi task, an ability to stay calm in stressful situations and being familiar with the local streets. You don’t have to have a map in your head but a familiarity of where the bigger streets are is necessary.
The video I have put in this post is different from the rest. It is made by the City of Edina. It shows a hands on look at what dispatchers do. The dispatcher also mentions that they dispatch for different agencies. That is common. When you are a dispatcher in a large city you could have cities embedded within the large city that you will dispatch for along with the fire departments and ambulance services.
The dispatcher also mentions working 12 hour shifts. That won’t necessarily be how the agency you end up with sets up their shifts. You could end up at an agency that has 8 hour shifts. Regardless of the shift it is a 365/24/7 operation. Just because you don’t have to have a degree to do the job doesn’t mean you don’t need anything. There are certifications you will need to get.
Agencies who are willing to take on someone to train will also give a certain time frame in which you will be allowed to get your certification. If you work for a bigger agency they may even have their own training class to help you pass the certification. Having done dispatching for a commercial business is a plus. Take a look at the video to see what you think. Just take note that the dispatcher says Edina is a high in traffic calls. Bigger cities will have a lot more happening which means a lot more stress. Agencies know that so a 911 dispatcher salary can be pretty decent.