Communication Officer Career Path
Communication Officers are non-sworn telecommunication specialists who provide a "life-line" to law enforcement officers from the many different agencies for whom the CSP provides dispatch services.
Communication Officers are trained to operate highly complex computers and communications equipment. They provide information and assistance to the citizens of Colorado and those visiting our state. Communications Officers must make decisions that are critical to the outcome of emergency situations. The information that is provided by them to field personnel is necessary for appropriate enforcement action and is often vital to officer safety.
Communication Officers work independently and are under continuous public scrutiny. They must deal with citizens from various socio-ethnic backgrounds, often in very stressful situations. Communication Officers must be able to empathize with others and provide a calm and professional response even when under extreme duress. Communications Officers must have keen listening and be able to prioritize job duties, often in an environment where multiple emergency situations occur simultaneously.
Communication Officer positions are typically filled at two levels:
- State Services Trainee V - an entry level position that requires no dispatching experience and
- Police Communication Officer Technician - a position that requires at least one year of police dispatching experience.
The training program varies in length from 12 to 23 weeks depending on the complexity of the communication center. The length of training may also be shortened depending on previous dispatching experience.
Training Consists Of:
- Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD)
- Telephone Techniques
- Receiving and dispatching emergency calls
- Phonetic Alphabet
- Emergency Medical Dispatch (EMD) where applicable
Areas of Special Emphasis:
Entry (Intern) level - Must be 18 years of age, must be a Colorado resident, have a high school diploma or a G.E.D., type approximately 4044 KPH, be willing and able to work nights, weekends and holidays, be able to communicate fluently in English and have a clear speaking voice.
Technician - Must be 18 years of age, must be a Colorado resident, have a high school diploma or a G.E.D., type approximately 4044 KPH, be willing and able to work nights, weekends and holidays, be able to communicate fluently in English and have a clear speaking voice. This level also requires a minimum of ONE YEAR of full-time police communication experience in operating, telephones, radio consoles and computer terminals to receive, record, and transmit police communications.
Applicants must be willing to be fingerprinted and must be able to pass an extensive background investigation, polygraph examination, and drug test. If you have used any illegal drugs in the past five years, or have been convicted of a felony, or have a DUI, DWAI, DUID or Habitual Traffic Offender conviction within the last 3 years you will be disqualified and will not be hired.