Communications Operator I

  • City of Vallejo
  • Vallejo, California
  • May 30, 2024
Full Time Information Technology and Communication Services
  • Salary: $66,601.18 - $80,954.22 Annually USD

Job Description



This recruitment is being conducted to fill reoccurring full-time vacancies. The list established by this recruitment may be used to fill future full-time, part-time, limited term, and temporary vacancies for up to one year. Periodic testing for this position will take place as described below in the supplemental information section.

The incumbent in this position will perform a variety of complex duties in direct support of public safety personnel including receipt, interpretation, and dispatching of calls for law enforcement, fire, ambulance and other emergency assistance; direct fire and medical emergencies to the proper agency for response; accurately utilize a computer-aided dispatch system to initiate a response to effectively handle emergencies; utilize a two-way radio system to communicate with field units; accurately maintain the status of all field units; and provide information and assistance to the public.


Communications Operator I - This is the entry/trainee level class in the Communications Operator series. This class is distinguished from the Communications Operator II by the performance of the more routine tasks and duties assigned to positions within the series in the Communications Section. Since this class is typically used as a training class, employees may have only limited or no directly related work experience. Incumbents are expected to promote to the Communications Operator II level after satisfactory completion of an eighteen month probationary period and when experience and education requirements for the Communications Operator II level are met.

Receives immediate supervision from a Communications Supervisor and receives functional supervision from Patrol Supervisors, to include the On-Duty Watch Commander.

Essential Functions

Important responsibilities and duties may include, but are not limited to, the following:

When Functioning in the Communications Center :
  • Receives, interprets, classifies, prioritizes and responds to calls of a routine and emergency nature, including those calls involving life-threatening situations. Enters relevant information by computer keyboard and accurately transits messages for dispatching as necessary and in accordance with established procedures operating a computer aided dispatch system.
  • Assigns calls to police units for necessary action, determining the appropriate units required for response. Coordinates when necessary with patrol supervisors regarding deployment of personnel. Visually monitors video display terminals and actively listens to police radio frequencies to ensure correct status of officers and emergency personnel. Maintains contact with all units on assignment; maintains daily log of all field calls and units dispatched.
  • Dispatches law enforcement or other emergency personnel and equipment. Operates a variety of communications equipment, including computer-aided dispatch terminals, radio transmitters and receivers, dispatch consoles, electronic data terminals, telephone and lease line teletype. Monitors multiple computer screens simultaneously. Enters, updates and retrieves information from computerized databases relating to wanted persons, stolen property, vehicle registration, stolen vehicles and other information.
  • Use telecommunications systems to coordinate emergency calls and relay information and assistance requests involving other law enforcement and public safety agencies. Determines appropriate communications or research channels selected from emergency telephone lines, radio room telephone lines, business telephone lines, police radio channels, other agency radio channels, and manual computerized information systems.
  • Provides information to officers and field personnel expeditiously, including but not limited to, warrants, vehicles, driver's licenses, parole, and criminal history information. Interprets or clarifies coded responses from various systems for law enforcement, public safety, or other relevant parties. Confirms warrants with responsible agencies, receives and files warrants and updates status of warrants. Receives, responds to and documents requests for Division of Motor Vehicle print-outs; documents vehicle impound information.
  • Accurately processes information received in the communications center and accurately disseminates that information to the appropriate concerned parties, including but not limited to, relatives of those involved; employers; hospitals; sworn and non-sworn public safety personnel at other agencies; other City departments; ambulance services; detoxification centers; tow companies; attorneys; state parole; county probation; animal control; commercial establishments; alarm companies and schools.
  • When appropriate, monitors other public safety and emergency preparedness radio traffic; security monitors; and takes necessary action.
  • Maintains a variety of automated and manual logs, records and files related to communications center activities.
  • Make court appearances as required related to assigned activities.
  • Perform a variety of record keeping, filing, indexing and other general clerical work; maintain a variety of logs relating to public safety activities.
  • Respond to public inquiries in a courteous manner; provide information; resolve complaints in an efficient and timely manner.
  • Perform other work as assigned.
  • When Functioning in the Field :
  • Operate a motor vehicle in the performance of assigned duties and responsibilities.
  • Perform communications center activities in a mobile vehicle or mobile setting.
  • Perform other work as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications/Knowledge, Skills & Abilities

Knowledge of:
  • Customer service and professional telephone answering techniques.
  • Modern office procedures, methods and computer equipment.
  • Correct English usage, spelling, punctuation and grammar.

Ability to :
  • Act appropriately and decisively under stressful and/or emergency situations.
  • Learn, apply and maintain knowledge of departmental rules, regulations, policies and procedures and information pertaining to law enforcement dispatch.
  • Learn policies and procedures of receiving and processing emergency calls.
  • Read, understand and apply a variety of call-taking information and materials.
  • Learn call interview and law enforcement dispatch techniques and procedures.
  • Learn basic communications rules and regulations governing the operation of radio transmitting and receiving systems.
  • Utilize a two-way radio system to communicate with field units; and accurately maintain the status of all field units.
  • Read and effectively interpret small-scale maps, have general knowledge of surrounding geographical area and information generated from a computer screen.
  • Learn general law enforcement codes, practices and methods.
  • Act promptly and appropriately in emergencies.
  • Speak clearly and concisely in a well-modulated voice pattern.
  • Effectively communicate with and elicit information from upset and irate citizens.
  • Maintain confidentiality of information.
  • Understand and follow both oral and written instructions promptly and accurately.
  • Communicate effectively in the English language in both oral and written forms.
  • Wear a telephone headset and be able to hear, distinguish and understand voices with background noises present.
  • Type accurately at a speed necessary for successful job perfor-mance. Must type a minimum of 35 words per minute.
  • Establish and maintain courteous and effective work relationships with subordinates, peers, supervisors and the general public.
  • Operate various office equipment including computer terminals.
  • Work various shifts as assigned.
  • Work flexible hours.
  • Sit or stand for long periods of time.
  • Effectively multi-task.
  • Provide courteous and effective customer service.
  • Maintain professional composure and take responsible and effective action during stressful situations.
  • Perform related duties as assigned.

Experience and Training Guidelines
A typical way to obtain the knowledge and abilities would be:
Experience :
Some experience operating radio, computer or other communica-tion equipment is highly desirable.

Training :
A High School Diploma or G.E.D. supplemented by general clerical experience.

License or Certificate :
Possession of, or ability to obtain, an appropriate, valid California driver license upon hire.

Tools and Equipment
Telephone console to receive 911 and non-emergency telephone calls; PC computer aided dispatch systems with mapping features and printer; Radio console controls and monitors; Headsets; Mobile Data computers; Microsoft Word and E-mail; Copy machine; Fax machine; California Law Enforcement Telephone System (CLETS); Telecommunications Device for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (TDD).

Additional Information

The Recruitment & Selection Process
1. Applicants must submit a completed City of Vallejo online application, including all responses to the Supplemental Questionnaire (Resume/Cover Letter Optional), by the posted testing deadline in order to move forward in the selection process.

NOTE: If you have problems creating a user account, obtaining your already created account information, or submitting your online application, please contact applicant support directly at 855-524-5627. City of Vallejo staff are unable to assist with these issues.

2. Applicants who meet the minimum qualifications and have submitted a completed application including answering all Supplemental Questions, will be invited to participate in the testing process as outlined below:

  • The City of Vallejo Police Department utilizes Criticall to test for the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to perform the essential duties for the position of Communications Operator. This is an online assessment that consists of seven components that takes approximately 3 hours and 5 minutes to complete. The assessment may NOT be completed by anyone other than the applicant . To validate the integrity of a successful candidate's score, the candidate will be asked to verify that no one completed any portion of the assessment on their behalf during polygraph questioning. Those whom are found to be untruthful in the submission of their assessment will be withdrawn from consideration for the position.
  • Criticall assessments will be proctored online the second and last Friday of every month beginning on June 14, 2024 until the position has closed. The application deadline to be included in an assessment group will be the Thursday prior to the date of the assessment as described below:

  • Testing Date

    Application Deadline

    June 14, 2024

    June 13, 2024

    June 28, 2024

    June 27, 2024

    July 12, 2024

    July 11, 2024

    July 26, 2024

    July 25, 2024

    August 9, 2024

    August 8, 2024

    August 30, 2024

    August 29, 2024

    September 13, 2024

    September 12, 2024

    September 27, 2024

    September 26, 2024
**After the testing link has been sent, applicants will have five calendar days to complete the assessment. If the assessment has not been completed within five calendar days, the application will be withdrawn from consideration and the applicant will be required to wait 30 days to reapply.
  • Testing instructions and information will be sent to you through NeoGov notification on the day of your scheduled assessment. To ensure timely delivery of notifications regarding your application status and testing, please make sure that NeoGov and Government Jobs are added to your safe senders list, and not filtered as spam when communications from these entities arrive in your email.
3. Candidates must achieve a minimum T-Score of 52 on the Criticall assessment. Those achieving a T-score of 52 or higher will be invited to participate in oral panel interviews. Please note: Those who do not achieve a minimum passing T-score of 52 will be required to wait 30 days before they are able to re-apply and re-take the Criticall assessment.

4. Oral panel interviews are weighted at 100% of a candidates score. Those who score 70% or higher will be placed on the Register of Eligibles and referred to the department for further consideration.

The City reserves the right to limit the number of candidates to those determined to be best qualified based upon all requested application materials, including training and experience, current resume, and responses to supplemental questions.

The selected candidate(s) will be required to successfully complete and pass the following to advance in the hiring process:
  • Chief's Interview
  • Communications Center sit along
  • Completed Personal History Statement (PHS)
  • Live Scan Fingerprinting
  • Polygraph
  • POST Dispatcher Background Investigation
  • Psychological Assessment
  • Medical Assessment
The City of Vallejo is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to applicants as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). Qualified individuals with disabilities who need a reasonable accommodation during the application, assessment or selection process may contact the Human Resources Department to request an accommodation. Please contact Marie Cruz at (707) 554-5914 or send an email to: prior to your scheduled testing date.
Disaster Service Workers - All City of Vallejo ("City") employees are designated Disaster Service Workers ("DSW") by state law (California Government Code Section 3100-3109). Employment with the City requires the affirmation of a loyalty oath to this effect. Employees are required to complete all DSW-related training as assigned and to return to work as ordered in the event of an emergency.

Veteran's Preference - Veteran's preference points will be applied in accordance with Civil Service Rule 24. A copy of the DD 214 form must be filed at time of application.

Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE) - The City of Vallejo is an Equal Opportunity Employer. It is the policy of the City of Vallejo to provide equal employment opportunity for all qualified persons. All applicants will be considered without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, ancestry, medical condition (cancer and genetic characteristics), genetic information, or denial of medical and family care leave, or any other non-job-related factors.

Note: The provisions in this bulletin do not constitute a contract, expressed or implied, and any provisions contained in this bulletin may be modified or revoked without notice.
Closing Date/Time: 9/26/2024 5:00 PM Pacific

Special Instructions

Please mention you found this employment opportunity on the job board.

Job Address

Vallejo, California United States View Map