How Do I Become a Dispatcher?

Dan Cavallari
Dan Cavallari
Trucking dispatchers have to be able to communicate well and stay calm under pressure.
Trucking dispatchers have to be able to communicate well and stay calm under pressure.

A dispatcher will be required to type quickly, take down information accurately, and communicate with various emergency services or other services clearly and succinctly. To become a dispatcher, you will first need to choose what kind of dispatcher you want to be. An emergency services dispatcher will usually need to go through additional training, while a dispatcher for a trucking company or other private service may be able to avoid such extra training. You will need a high school education or higher to become a dispatcher, and you will usually need to take a typing test in order to qualify for the job.

Trucking dispatchers should be good at multi-tasking to properly handle to needs of many drivers.
Trucking dispatchers should be good at multi-tasking to properly handle to needs of many drivers.

If your typing skills are not sufficient to become a dispatcher, you may want to consider taking a typing course at a local community college. Once you feel comfortable with your skills, go to a police station, fire station, or other service that may potentially hire you to become a dispatcher and inquire about the specific application requirements. These requirements can vary from service to service, and emergency service dispatching jobs will often require you to get first aid and CPR training as well as other certifications.

Improve your communication skills by taking a job in retail or another customer-oriented job. These jobs will give you the opportunity to learn how to communicate effectively with different types of people, which is an exceptionally important skill to have if you want to become a dispatcher. Phone skills are also important, as are computer literacy skills, so whenever possible, take jobs that will help you hone these skills.

Be prepared to undergo a background check, a polygraph test, and even a personality test when you apply for a job as a dispatcher, especially in emergency services. Employers will be highly selective so they can find just the right candidates for the job, so be sure you are prepared for any such tests. Be ready to work on weekends as well, as this is often a requirement for being hired as a dispatcher. You may need to get fingerprinted in order to be eligible to become a dispatcher, and it is likely that you will need to submit to other eligibility requirements outlined by the state or local governments. You will also need to take part in a training course, which can range anywhere from a few weeks to six months. Prepare yourself for such training by learning as much as possible beforehand about the job you will perform.

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    • Trucking dispatchers have to be able to communicate well and stay calm under pressure.
      By: Gilles Paire
      Trucking dispatchers have to be able to communicate well and stay calm under pressure.
    • Trucking dispatchers should be good at multi-tasking to properly handle to needs of many drivers.
      By: Marc Xavier
      Trucking dispatchers should be good at multi-tasking to properly handle to needs of many drivers.