How to Become a 911 Dispatcher in Evansville, Indiana

In Evansville, 911 calls are routed to the Evansville City/Vanderburgh County Joint Department of Central Dispatch.  Approximately thirty 911 dispatchers work for this agency handling more than 200,000 calls to 911 in 2012 alone.  This averaged out to about a thousand calls per day.

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Here is a step-by-step guide to join these telecommunicators and obtain a position as a dispatcher in Evansville. Follow these four steps to become a 911 dispatcher in Evansville, Indiana:

Meet the Requirements for Employment in Evansville
Obtain the Necessary Education and Training
Complete the Application Process
Undergo On-the-Job Training and Obtain Certification



Step 1.  Meet the Requirements in Evansville

Unlike in most dispatch centers, a high school education is not an absolute requirement, but it is preferred that you have one.  You must have the following qualifications to apply to be a 911 operator in Evansville:

  • Ability to type 30 words per minute with 90% accuracy
  • Must have one year of experience of the following type:
    • Public safety dispatching
    • Working as a telephone operator
    • Performing data entry or some other function related to computers


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Step 2.  Obtain the Necessary Education and Training

911 dispatchers in Evansville made more than the average for this position in Indiana according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, leading to a high level of competition for these positions.  Frequently candidates for these types of positions obtain degrees in fields that are relevant to being a 911 dispatcher.  Some such degrees include:

  • Communications
  • Criminal justice
  • Emergency medical training
  • Fire science

In addition to the large number of schools in Indiana that offer these types of degrees, online education offers the ability to obtain a degree in a more flexible manner.



Step 3.  Complete the Application Process

You will need to monitor the Evansville and Vanderburgh County job website for a posting of telecommunicator jobs.  When a position is available, you will need to fill out an application and mail it to the address at the top of the application.  You can also physically turn in your application at the Human Resources department during a weekday.

Once your application has been chosen, you will be contacted.  You will have to provide additional information, so the Police Department can perform a background check on you.



Step 4.  Undergo on the Job Training and Obtain Certification

After you have been hired, you will be trained by one of the Supervisors.  This thorough training will prepare you to receive 911 calls and radio requests for emergency service.  You will learn to prioritize complaints and dispatch the appropriate agency to respond to the emergency.

You will need to become certified to use the following computerized information systems within six months of starting work:

  • NCIC:  National Crime Information System
  • IDACS:  Indiana Data and Communications System

Evansville/Vanderburgh County 911 Calls

The Central Dispatch provides a detailed analysis of the calls it receives every year.  The following types of calls were made in 2012:

    • For Police
      • Evansville – 153,294
      • Vanderburgh County – 55,059


  • For Fire
    • Evansville – 9,093
    • Vanderburgh County – 3,789
    • Ambulance for city and county – 20,538
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Like most dispatch centers, that of Evansville and Vanderburgh County receives a number of inappropriate calls.  Their website on making 911 calls specifies not to call to find out the time.  Some of the unusual calls from Evansville included the following:

  • In August 2013, a number of people called 911 to say that their cable was out.
  • During September 2013, a man called 911 to report that the female escort that he and another man had hired took their money and refused to give change.

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