WhatCOMM Police Dispatcher

Job position / title
WhatCOMM Police Dispatcher
Name of business / employer
City of Bellingham
Job description / duties
The City of Bellingham is actively seeking qualified applicants for the position of WhatCOMM Police Dispatcher. Applicants interested in this position must complete testing through Public Safety Testing.

Please visit the Public Safety Testing website (www.publicsafetytesting.com) for information regarding the testing process. All testing must be completed between June 29, 2019 and January 8, 2020.

Salary Information:
2019 Wages:
$23.45/hr – WhatCOMM Dispatcher-in-Training
$24.87/hr – $29.67/hr – WhatCOMM Dispatcher (fully trained)

This recruitment process will create a Civil Service eligibility register that will be used to fill vacancies should they occur.

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.

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.


The work is performed in an office environment at a computer workstation using different desktop computer systems, a multi-line telephone system and extensive radio communications equipment to receive, input and process urgent information. Frequently take calls from extremely upset citizens requesting an emergency response. Citizens are sometimes hostile or relate very unpleasant situations in graphic detail. Workload intensity varies considerably from one minute to the next and requires frequent swings from urgent independent decision making to cooperative teamwork through a self-directed workgroup, with guidance from the Deputy Director.

The working environment includes:
•Rotating shifts covering 24 hours a day, seven days a week, including holidays.
•Frequent changes in multi-jurisdictional policies and procedures, periodic workstation relocation and changes in equipment availability.



•A minimum of one year of experience in a position with intensive public contact.
•Keyboard entry skills at a minimum of 40 wpm net.
•Experience or training in the use of computer software such as word processing, spreadsheets, database management, desktop publishing programs or other business/educational software preferred.
•Experience using multi-line phone systems preferred.
•Must acquire within first year of training a working knowledge of the geography of Whatcom County to include: cities and towns, locations and names of highways, main streets, major buildings and businesses and establishments such as names of parks.
•Previous experience in public safety dispatching preferred.

•Must be able to obtain and maintain ACCESS certification within three months of hire.
•Must obtain and maintain Telecommunicator 1 & 2 certifications within twelve months of hire.
•Must pass a hearing evaluation prior to hire.
•Must pass a Police criminal convictions records check, background investigation, psychological exam, and polygraph exam prior to hire.
•Must pass a pre-employment drug screen.
•Must have a telephone at place of residence or a cell phone.

Application deadline / closing date
Salary / rate of pay
See posting
Days and hours of employment
Person or department to contact
Human Resources
Business address
104 W. Magnolia Street, Bellingham, WA 98225
How to apply

**You are encouraged to print a copy of this job announcement for your reference as the process moves along.**
Step 1: Applicants interested in this position must complete testing through Public Safety Testing. Please visit the Public Safety Testing website (www.PublicSafetyTesting.com) for information regarding the testing process. All testing must be completed between June 29, 2019 and January 8, 2020.
Public Safety Testing offers multiple dates and locations to complete testing. They will be offering one testing date in Bellingham on January 7, 2020.

Step 2: 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 on or around January 10, 2020 to complete a City of Bellingham Employment Application online.

Step 3: Candidates that meet minimum qualifications will be invited via email on or around January 31, 2019 to participate in Skills Testing.

Step 4: The Skills Testing sessions are tentatively scheduled for the week of February 10, 2020, in Bellingham, WA. Candidates must appear in person to complete the Skills Testing.

Step 5: Qualified 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 on or around February 18, 2020.

The top scoring 15 candidates or the top 25%, whichever is greater, will be referred to the Department for final assessment on or around February 27, 2020.

Please Note: Candidates will receive updates regarding application status via email. Please be sure to check your email frequently.