Police Communications Dispatcher

City of Oakland
Full Time 94612. Workstations are available during regular business per week $103,126 - $114,088 Per year CA 455 7th St, Oakland, CA 94607, United States


The Position

***This is an open continuous recruitment******Qualified candidates are encouraged to apply immediately***
The City of Oakland is an equal opportunity employer that values workforce diversity, inclusion, and equity. Oakland has a long history of activism around issues of justice and equity. Both oppression and this resistance to oppression have shaped the city’s historical roots and the lives of its residents to this day. As public servants to one of the most diverse cities in the nation, we strive to develop employees who understand the harm and impacts of systemic inequity to create lasting, meaningful outcomes for everyone. Oakland strives to establish an environment that embraces the richness of culture, community, and individualism of employees.  
About the Oakland Police DepartmentMission Statement

The Oakland Police Department’s mission is to provide police service focused on public safety and the sanctity of life, to hold ourselves accountable to a high standard of conduct, efficiency, and efficacy, and to promote mutual respect between the Department and the Communities of Oakland. 

We will work in partnership with our Community, recognize the successes of our staff, build a team of professionals who are trained and developed to provide top quality Service, hold ourselves and each other accountable, and continually seek to be the exemplar for 21st Century Constitutional Policing, Community engagement, and positive employee morale within the police profession.

Core Values
  • Fairness: We value fairness in our dealings with our Community and with each other. Fairness is the opportunity to deliver services to our Community and make decisions that are impartial, equitable, and just.
  • Integrity: Though it includes a consistency between our statements and our actions, integrity is more than service to the truth. Integrity encompasses a transparency and accountability that are born from a desire to do the right thing, even when times are difficult.
  • Respect: Mutual respect begins at home; we value respect throughout our organization, both up and down the chain of command. How we treat each other will be reflected in the way every staff member will be expected to treat every member of our Community.
  • Service: Our decisions are constantly guided by our mission of providing services focused on public safety and quality of life, while also ensuring that our services are provided in an efficient and effective manner
  • Teamwork: Purpose of mission and adherence to values are best drawn out from employees who are supported, valued, and developed. Whether through peer, supervisory, or command support and mutual respect, OPD expects that our staff all work together to achieve our common goal.
The City of Oakland is accepting applications for an exciting opportunity in the Oakland Police Department's Communications Division.  Come and join a wonderful team of professionals dedicated to serving the citizens of Oakland. Start an exciting career and become a 9-1-1 Dispatcher!  

Police Communications Dispatchers receive approximately one year of on-the-job training and must attend a POST-certified basic dispatcher course. During training, working hours and days off vary. Dispatchers may work any of the three shifts in a 24-hour period; may be required to work a schedule with rotating days off; often work weekends, holidays, and overtime as required by emergencies or Departmental needs. This is a public contact position.

We are looking for someone who: 
  • possesses the ability to act promptly, logically, and decisively;
  • can communicate clearly;
  • is able to read, comprehend and retain information;
  • will maintain a calm and professional demeanor even under stressful situations;
  • has the ability to adapt to changing situations;
  • is able to multi-task;
  • is highly self-motivated; and
  • will display a high level of integrity.

The sensitivity of the position calls for emotionally stable applicants. Applicants must have a satisfactory record as a law-abiding citizen. Final candidates will undergo a thorough background investigation, a polygraph examination, and a medical examination. Excessive alcohol usage, drug abuse, a poor work record or any falsification of employment information are grounds for disqualification from employment consideration.

What you will typically be responsible for:
  • Receiving and screening telephone calls and recording data
  • Analyzing calls for priority level
  • Using computer-aided keyboard and data entry equipment or manually recording and relaying information (often of an emergency nature) to appropriate units
  • Receiving, transmitting, and recording data
  • Running queries in automated warrant information systems
  • Answering questions from the public
  • Dispatching from a mobile command center, as requested

A few reasons why you might love a career as a Police Communications Dispatcher:

  • The work you do directly impacts the public and City of Oakland residents
  • You will have the ability to demonstrate your honesty, moral and ethical decision-making skills
  • In this role, you will use your fact-finding abilities to identify needs, make decisions, and address issues
  • There are lots of opportunity for growth within the City of Oakland

A few challenges you may face as a Police Communications Dispatcher:

  • You must remain calm to effectively handle high-stress situations
  • This position requires that you are careful about details and thorough in completing tasks
  • You will need to maintain composure when faced with callers in aggressive, angry, or emotional situations 

Competencies Required:

  • Professional & Technical Expertise: Applying technical subject matter to the job
  • Analyzing & Interpreting Data: Drawing meaning and conclusions from quantitative or qualitative data
  • Using Technology: Working with electronic hardware and software applications
  • Attention to Detail: Focusing on the details of work content, work steps, and final work products
  • Displaying Ownership and Accountability: Holding self and others accountable for measurable high-quality, timely, and cost-effective results
  • Handling Stress: Maintaining emotional stability and self-control under pressure, challenge, or adversity
  • Learning Agility: Seeking learning opportunities and applying the lessons to one’s work
  • Professional Integrity & Ethics: Displaying honesty, adherence to principles, and personal accountability
  • Oral Communication: Engaging effectively in dialogue
  • Writing: Communicating effectively in writing
  • Customer Focus: Attending to the needs and expectations of customers
  • Professional Impact: Presenting self as a positive representative of the organization
  • Teamwork: Collaborating with others to achieve shared goals
*Click on the link below to see a video on what it's like to work for the City of Oakland!
Read the complete job description at:  

Note: This is a continuous recruitment process; eligible candidates may remain on the eligible list for 2 years. 

This recruitment is open to all qualified candidates. 
  • If you are a current, SEIU-represented, permanent employee of the City and Port of Oakland you may apply at:  
  • If you possess 3 years of experience as a Police Dispatcher, you may be eligible to apply as a Lateral applicant; you may apply at:

Minimum Requirements for Application

Any combination of education and experience that is equivalent to the following minimum qualifications is acceptable.Education

: Equivalent to graduation from high school


: Two years of recent full-time equivalent of responsible work experience. College education may substitute for experience on a year for year basis.


: minimum typing speed of 35 words per minute (wpm).

Other Requirements:
  • Must be eighteen (18) years of age or older.
  • Must pass a thorough background investigation.
  • Must pass the P.O.S.T. Public Safety Dispatchers' Basic Course within one year of appointment as a condition of continued employment.
Bilingual Requirements: A select number of positions filled through this recruitment will require selective bilingual skills in one or more of the following languages: Cantonese, Mandarin, or Spanish. Please note, identified bilingual skills will be tested prior to a final offer of employment. Candidates must pass the bilingual skills test to achieve placement on and/or remain on the bilingual skills eligible list. NOTE: Bilingual skills are not required for most positions. 

Background Investigation, Psychological and Medical Assessment:
Final candidates will undergo a thorough background investigation by the Oakland Police Department Backgrounds Unit which may include, but is not limited to: 
  • A thorough review of the completed Personal History Statement (PHS)
  • A polygraph
  • A criminal history check consisting of a fingerprint check with the California Department of Justice and FBI
  • A drug history check (certain drug usage may result in an automatic disqualification)
  • A credit history check
  • Interviews with previous and past employers and co-workers
  • Present and past neighborhood checks
  • Education verification
  • Driving record check
  • Checks with Law Enforcement agencies in the area you live
  • Military history (if applicable)
Unfavorable information revealed during the background investigation is grounds for rejection or discharge.

After a conditional job offer is made, candidates will be assessed for compliance with Police Department medical and psychological standards.  Any remaining background issues will be resolved during the post-offer phase.  Character-related information discovered during the post-offer stage may be grounds for revocation of the conditional job offer and removal from hiring consideration.  In addition, the City Physician will evaluate each candidate to determine their ability to meet the physical demands of the job.  The medical exam includes a drug-screening test.