Recruitment #1811-6308-001


The Public Safety Communications Department is seeking qualified individuals to fill multiple vacancies for the Public Safety Dispatcher position. The Public Safety Dispatcher position involves skilled radio communications that includes dispatching emergency and non-emergency calls for service. It requires the dispatcher to relay critical information via a radio system to public safety personnel who are dispatched on calls for service. This position also evaluates, triages, and then disseminates information to public safety personnel in addition to keeping track of their location and welfare. It also requires the dispatcher to access and enter computer information according to established policies and procedures. Extensive keyboarding and multi-tasking abilities are essential.

General Description

Dispatches public safety units in response to requests for emergency police, fire and medical assistance in the metropolitan and surrounding areas. Operates telecommunications equipment to dispatch public safety units and monitors radios and telephone calls.

Essential Functions

Answers multi-line telephone and radio calls for emergency assistance by asking questions to determine the caller's need and location, verifying information and providing pre-arrival instructions.

Dispatches helicopters, police, fire and medical service units by determining the closest available unit to the caller, sending radio frequencies and operating computer aided dispatch programs to relay emergency information to field personnel.

Assigns telemetry channels to medical units, maintains radio contact with responding units, provides patient care instructions to emergency site and provides estimates for the time of arrival of medical units.

Performs related duties by maintaining records of emergency calls, reviewing recorded calls for completeness, grading calls, making and distributing notes to supervisors, providing records of calls to outside agencies, entering information into the computer data system, ordering supplies, making copies of forms, assisting with payroll, updating maps, logs and manuals, monitoring radios for various City departments, taking complaints and reports of minor hazards and dispatching personnel as needed.

Provides on-site training by monitoring radio communications, monitoring computer and telephone work, assisting with the development of effective dispatch techniques and radio communication and documenting strengths and weaknesses.

Minimum Qualifications

Minimum Education Level & Type: High School Diploma or G.E.D.

Minimum Experience Qualifications: No experience required              

Special Job Requirements

Ability to type 35 net words per minute (WPMN). 

No felony convictions or drug abuse

This position also requires the following:

  • An intensive training period requires study of written procedures as well as hands-on training experience. Probationary period is 18 months.
  • The ability to evaluate verbal and written data quickly and respond calmly to stressful situations
  • Rotating work schedules are required.  Shifts will be composed of 10 and/or 12 hour days.  Overtime work will be required as necessary.  Other alternate work schedules may be implemented based on operational need.
  • Shift work is based on seniority and includes evenings, nights, Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays.
  • Stressful and fast-paced work which requires the ability to adjust quickly and to maintain confidentiality

Preferred Qualifications

Experience working as an emergency 911 operator or dispatcher

Selection Plan

You are highly encouraged to print this bulletin because it contains important testing dates and information that you will need to refer to later, and it will not be available after the closing date.

Applicants who submit a complete application and meet the minimum qualifications will receive an email notification giving a formal invitation to the practical assessment.


Practical Assessment

The practical assessment will take place the week of December 10, 2018.  This assessment will consist of two parts performed on the same day. Part I is a typing test which measures typing speed.  Part II utilizes computer software to simulate a public safety communications environment.  Applicants must successfully pass Part I with a typing speed of 35 WPMN or greater in order to continue with Part II.  Applicants will be notified of their scores, pass or fail, after the completion of testing that day.  Applicants that receive a passing score will be scheduled for oral board interviews.


Oral Board interviews

Applicants who pass the practical assessment will be scheduled for oral board interviews and will receive their time slot following the completion of their practical assessment.  Interviews are scheduled for the week of December 17, 2018. Applicants passing the Oral Board interview will be placed on a Civil Service Employment List for consideration within the Public Safety Communications Department.

A candidate's ranking on the Employment List will be based on their final score which will be calculated as 55% of the rating for the Practical Assessment, and 45% of the rating for the Oral Board interview.


Candidates placed on the Employment List will be subject to the following:

  • Selected candidates will receive a conditional job offer and must successfully pass pre-employment medical testing and background clearance.

All employees in this classification are subject to random drug screening during their duration of employment with the Public Safety Communications Department.

Veterans, Native American, or Disability preference points will be added to the achieved score for those that are placed on the Civil Service Employment List. If you qualify for Veteran or Native American preference points as outlined in your Employment Profile, you must submit your documentation at the time of the Practical Examination. Copies of DD 214s must reflect a characterization of HONORABLE Discharge.

Applicants requiring an accommodation in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act for any of the applicant evaluations must call 520.791.4241 at least 48 hours prior to the particular evaluation.

CONTACTS: Communications throughout this process will be sent via email exclusively so please ensure your browser accepts emails from and check your email account regularly. Failure to respond or follow instructions will result in disqualification. All email inquiries should be directed to the individual listed below. Liliana Almeraz, (520) 837-4303 or

Pre-employment Medical Testing Requirements

Long Audio Test

Non-NIDA Drug Test

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To ensure accurate payroll information for tax purposes, the successful candidate will need to provide their original Social Security Card or original letter from the Social Security Administration with their social security number prior to beginning work with the City of Tucson.

The City of Tucson hires lawful workers only - US citizens or nationals and non-citizens with valid work authorization - without discrimination. Federal immigration laws require all employers to verify both the identity and employment eligibility of all persons hired to work in the United States. In its efforts to meet the law's requirements, the City of Tucson participates in the E-Verify program established by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Social Security Administration (SSA) to aid employers in verifying the eligibility of workers.

Retired City of Tucson employees receiving benefits from the Tucson Supplemental Retirement System who are considering reemployment with the City should be aware that pursuant to Section 22-37(g) of the Tucson City Code, retirement benefits shall be suspended during the period of reemployment with the City of Tucson unless you have been separated at least twelve consecutive months before returning to work AND you return to a non-permanent employment classification. Creditable service does not accrue during any reemployment period.