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Bellingham Police - WhatCOMM Dispatcher
Last updated on July 30, 2021
PST Partner Agency since May 09, 2017
Testing Deadline: September 20, 2021.
The City of Bellingham is currently hiring for WhatCOMM Police Dispatcher. All testing must be completed between March 6, 2021 and September 20, 2021 to be considered.
Public Safety Testing offers multiple dates and locations to complete testing. All testing will be held at Public Safety Testing in Kent or Lynnwood, WA.
The City of Bellingham will use the scoring criteria recommended by Public Safety Testing to determine the highest ranked qualified applicants. The top forty scoring candidates will be invited via email to complete a City of Bellingham Employment application online. Candidates that meet minimum qualifications will be invited to participate in Skills Testing. Candidates will be placed on a ranked eligibility register based on the Public Safety Testing score, worth 60% of the final score and the Skills Testing score, worth 40% of the final score. Candidates will be notified of final score and rank.
The top scoring 15 candidates or the top 25%, whichever is greater, will be referred to the Department for final assessment.
Please refer to the City of Bellingham employment website for more information www.cob.org/employment and fill out a job interest alert to receive email notification with the most recent information on public safety career opportunities.
Additionally, it is required to have the Personal History Statement completed through Public Safety Testing; please ensure all sections are completed thoroughly by September 20, 2021.
On the shores of Bellingham Bay with Mount Baker as its backdrop, Bellingham is the last major city before the Washington coastline meets the Canadian border. The City of Bellingham, which serves as the county seat of Whatcom County, is at the center of a uniquely picturesque area offering a rich variety of recreational, cultural, educational and economic activities.
A Public Safety Dispatcher receives and processes telephone requests for police, fire and medical emergency response. The person in this position determines the nature, urgency and jurisdiction of a call and either dispatches public safety personnel and equipment to the scene of the emergency or transfers the call to the appropriate jurisdiction. The Dispatcher enters information from the caller and responding units into a computer-aided dispatch software program and continually updates the status of those responding to the incident. The WhatCOMM Dispatch center serves as the Public Safety Answering Point for Whatcom County. The center also serves as the activation point for the AMBER Alert Plan for North Puget Sound.
WhatCOMM Dispatcher In Training:
This is the entry-level position for new Public Safety Dispatchers during their training period. A new hire will go through a structured training program to learn WhatCOMM policies and procedures for handling emergent and non-emergent calls as well as other agency, department, and dispatch center protocols.
WhatCOMM Dispatcher I:
A Dispatcher in Training will promote to Dispatcher I when he or she completes the initial training period and can independently handle the call receiving function.
WhatCOMM Dispatcher II:
A Dispatcher II is distinguished from the Dispatcher I position by the ability to handle both dispatch consoles as well as the call receiving function.
1. Receives, prioritizes, and routes emergency telephone calls from the public to appropriate jurisdictions. Enters the nature, location and source of the emergency call into a computer terminal using computer-aided dispatch software. Retrieves and evaluates information from the computer-based on knowledge of dispatch and emergency response procedures, status of available emergency responders and familiarity with major roads, local businesses and geographic features. Relays call information and/or dispatches appropriate Police personnel to the scene of the reported incident.
2. Enters and receives information such as wants, stolen vehicles, missing persons and runaways from a computer terminal with a nationwide law enforcement database and transmits requested information to law enforcement personnel in the field.
3. Communicates with a variety of agencies including US Customs, Canadian Customs, WSP, US Border Patrol, USCG, Homeland Security and Whidbey Island Naval Base regarding warrant service and resources that the agencies have available for emergencies.
4. Regularly contacts and updates status of field units according to established procedures and protocols. Contacts various resources as requested by field units.
5. Receives non-emergency telephone complaints and inquiries from the public. Determines the nature of the call based on established procedures and either refers the caller to the appropriate agency or enters the call in the computer and dispatches units according to the priority and urgency of the call.
6. Staffs the NAWAS phone and notifies Whatcom County Department of Emergency Management of changes. Notifies San Juan County of all situations that may affect them.
ADDITIONAL DUTIES REQUIRED:
1. Generates routine reports such as the incident history reports and incident shift summaries.
2. Develops and recommends updates to comprehensive dispatch policies, procedures, and protocols as necessary for the efficient operations of the center. Identifies and recommends new policies and procedures to improve dispatch operations and minimize liability.
3. Performs Lead Worker duties as assigned to include posting overtime, making seating charts, and notifying Deputy Director of equipment/personnel issues and significant events that may impact staffing.
4. Performs training of new employees to include call receiving and radio dispatching.
5. Performs other duties within the scope of the classification.
# of Staff: Over 100 commissioned officers
Bellingham Police - WhatCOMM Dispatcher has 1 vacancy.
The deadline to test for the next hiring cycle is September 20, 2021.
The eligibility register will be valid for six (6) months. This recruitment process will create a Civil Service eligibility register that will be used to fill vacancies should they occur.
$24.94/hr - WhatCOMM Dispatcher -in -training
$26.45/hr - $32.51/hr - WhatCOMM Dispatcher (fully trained)
The City’s excellent and comprehensive benefit program includes medical, dental and vision coverage for employees and their dependents, plus life insurance and long term disability for employees. The package includes generous paid leave provisions, including vacation, 12 holidays per year and sick leave. City employees participate in the Washington State Retirement System with joint contributions by the City and the employee. The City of Bellingham also offers an Employee Assistance Program, and employees have the option of participating in a Flexible Spending Plan for health care/dependent care reimbursement, as well as deferred compensation programs. Additional information about the benefits can be found in the What-Comm collective bargaining agreement at: https://www.cob.org/employment/Pages/labor-agreements-pay-schedule.aspx
Bellingham Police - WhatCOMM Dispatcher Requirements
|Category||Requirement||Required at time of...|
The typing test is a critical component of your written test score and you are required to complete the online typing test before the day of your exam. You will be allowed four (4) attempts at the typing test every seven (7) days and are responsible for selecting the score that you want PST to forward to the agencies you have applied with.
40 WPM; 95% Accuracy
|US Citizen/Lawful Permanent Resident||Yes, or can lawfully work in the U.S.|
|Driver's License Required||Yes|
|Felony Conviction(s) as an Adult||Must pass a Police criminal convictions records check, background investigation, psychological exam, and polygraph exam prior to hire.|
|Felony Conviction(s) as a Juvenile||Must pass a Police criminal convictions records check, background investigation, psychological exam, and polygraph exam prior to hire.|
|Ability to Read & Write the English Language||Yes|
|Multiple Scores from Same Applicant||We only consider the most recent score|
|Request/Access Scores||Every January and July|
|Dispatch Typing Test||40 WPM; 95% Accuracy|
TESTING IN WASHINGTON STATE CANCELED THROUGH MAY 31, 2020
All pre-employment tests in Washington State have been canceled until May 31, 2020 unless government restrictions are eased. With recent updates, facility closures, and government guidelines, this step is necessary and could be modified at any time. The health and safety of our customers, our staff, and their families is of the highest priority.
We will continue to evaluate developments and make changes to this policy as necessary. When we do resume testing, there will be plenty of events for everyone to test. We are in regular communication with our public safety agency partners, assessing alternatives to the traditional testing model and our testing policies. Any future updates will be posted on the PST website and our Facebook page.
If you have tested with PST in the past 12 months, there may be additional positions you are now eligible to add. Several departments have temporarily changed their testing policies due to the suspension in testing that COVID-19 has caused. Please login to your PST account and navigate to the ‘New Positions’ page to see what departments you can add! We will regularly update that page in your account as departments send updates.
FUTURE TEST REGISTRATION
We know that there will be testing in the future - we just don’t know when! We want you to be prepared for when testing begins again so we have created test events on our calendar that you can register for that will place you in a queue to be first notified. These tests are not “real” test events, they are essentially a holding area. You will be able to “reschedule” out of that event to any other event date/location at no cost. Registering now will also give you time to work on your Personal History Statement (PHS) so that your data will be ready and up-to-date to send to your departments once testing resumes.
To sign up for this placeholder event, select the June 15, 2020 test date in your category (police, fire, 911 dispatch, corrections, etc.).
You may also click on the test event of interest below to sign up:
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