New hire training is extensive and can take up to six months in duration. Training includes off site classroom curriculum as well as on the job performance training.

During training, emergency communications specialist trainees must learn an extensive vocabulary of public safety-related terminology. Emergency communications specialists, also known as dispatchers, must be able to read and understand large volumes of written material in the form of training and procedural manuals. They must also learn and consistently be able to apply a large number of policies and procedures to daily job performance.

While in training, emergency communications specialist trainees must learn to operate and view multiple computer monitors with mouse/keyboards, in addition to radio and telephone equipment, in rapid succession and/or simultaneously.  

Systems include a computer-aided dispatch system (CAD), radio communications control console, computerized telephone system with integrated mapping, and Texas & National Law Enforcement Telecommunications systems. These systems require the quick and accurate use of a large number of short command codes to input and retrieve data accurately and rapidly on a consistent basis.

Dispatchers must be able to quickly and accurately recall letters, numbers, addresses, names, and license numbers received by radio, telephone, or on a computer monitor - even when data is presented in rapid succession or simultaneously.

Emergency communications specalist trainees must expect to be corrected and learn from corrections.  Failure to consistently perform up to established standards, excessive tardiness, unexplained absences, or other policy or rule violations are grounds for disciplinary action, up to and including discharge.
Dispatcher on phone