We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Police Dispatcher?

By D. Jeffress
Updated Feb 16, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A police dispatcher is responsible for answering emergency and non-emergency phone calls at a police station. He or she records information from callers and directs police officers to crime and accident scenes. A dispatcher also assists people who come into the police station with information about criminals, threats, and suspicious activity. By gathering the details of a situation, the dispatcher ensures that emergency responders are fully prepared to deal with the incident at hand. A calm, logical demeanor and excellent communication skills are needed in order to perform the job effectively.

When a call for police assistance comes in, the dispatcher answers the phone and attempts to gather as much information as possible from the caller. He or she obtains the address of the incident and asks about what happened. The police dispatcher determines the urgency of the call and contacts the appropriate responders via telephone or radio. He or she usually tries to stay on the line with the caller while police make their way to the accident or crime scene. By using clear, calm language, the dispatcher tries to reassure the caller and help him or her get through the situation.

During the call, the police dispatcher transcribes information into a computer system so that official reports can be made. Typing skills and computer proficiency are important to ensure data is entered as quickly and accurately as possible. In addition, a police dispatcher must be familiar with the layout of the city and the routes of patrolling officers so responders can efficiently find their way to their destinations.

Police dispatchers assume additional duties when not answering calls. They usually work at the front desks of police stations, typing official statements, keeping general office records, and helping people file complaints or criminal charges. Many dispatchers are also responsible for logging and retrieving information about prisoners, such as their past charges, mug shots, and fingerprint records.

A high school diploma is usually the minimum requirement to become a police dispatcher. Most employers require applicants to pass drug and background checks to ensure they are responsible and able to perform the important duties of the job. A new police dispatcher receives hands-on training from experienced professionals to learn how to use the phone and computer systems correctly. An individual who excels in his or her work may be able to obtain a supervisory position at a police department or emergency response center.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.