The Oklahoma City Police Department is responsible for operating the City’s Emergency Management and 911 programs. The Oklahoma City Police Department covers more than 2,500 police reporting districts.
The 911 Communications Center is part of the Department’s Administration Bureau, which conducts all of the business functions within the Department.
If you want to become a 911 dispatcher for Oklahoma City’s 911 Communications Center, you must complete a number of steps:
|Meet Minimum Requirements for Employment in Oklahoma
|Apply for Employment in Oklahoma City and Complete Pre-Employment Testing
|Complete New Hire Testing and New Dispatcher Training
Step 1. Meet Minimum Requirements for Employment in Oklahoma City
Before applying for a 911 dispatcher job through the 911 Communications Center in Oklahoma City, you must ensure you meet the minimum requirements for employment. Specifically, you must be skilled in:
- Accurately and efficiently obtaining, recalling and relaying pertinent information
- Communicating verbally
- Accurately recording information
- Typing (accurately typing at least 35 wpm)
- Making quick and accurate decisions
- Remaining calm in emergency situations
Many individuals choose to pursue an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in a number of relevant fields, such as:
- Public Safety
- Criminal Justice
- Homeland Security
- Emergency Management
A degree in a field related to emergency communications makes sense for many 911 dispatchers, particularly those individuals with aspiration of attaining higher-level positions.
Step 2. Apply for Employment in Oklahoma City and Complete Pre-Employment Testing
When the Police Department is hiring 911 dispatcher trainees, you must apply through Oklahoma City’s online job portal. You must log into the system and create a user name and password to begin the online application process. A list of all open jobs is listed on the website.
You will be asked to submit a written document verifying your typing skills of at least 35 wpm with your application. You can take a typing test through a local employment agency or placement office, usually free of charge.
The pre-employment process for 911 dispatchers in Oklahoma City involves taking a written test and participating in an interview, both of which are scored. The written portion is weighted at 50 percent, and the interview is weighted at 50 percent. A minimum of 70 percent is required to receive further consideration from the department.
An eligibility list is kept, and only those individuals who have scored above 70 percent are placed on it. The eligibility list is kept in effect for 180 days from the final selection procedure and is used to fill future vacancies in the department.
Step 3. Complete New Hire Testing and New Dispatcher Training
Upon being selected as a 911 dispatcher with the Department, you will be required to complete a polygraph examination, a police background check, a medical exam, and a drug screen.
As a new 911 dispatcher trainee, you can expect to receive between 4 and 6 weeks of classroom instruction/training on the telecommunications equipment and the procedures of the 911 Communications Center. From there, you will spend the remainder of your 12-month probationary period receiving on-the-job training under close supervision.