Emergency Services Dispatcher Trainee

Staffed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, the Sheriff’s Communications Center provides the highest quality, professionally competent public safety services to over one million residents of San Diego County. Emergency Services Dispatchers process over 2,000 calls for law enforcement services each day, with more than one third of those being 9-1-1 calls.

In addition to providing communications services to the various divisions of the Sheriff’s Department, the Communications Center also provides communications services for other county agencies including the San Diego County Probation Department and the District Attorney’s Office.

About the job

  • No experience needed
  • Starting pay is currently $22.10 per hour and increases to $26.63 after approximately one year on the job.
  • Candidates must be 18 years of age and have effective oral and written communication skills in English. All candidates must pass the CritiCall performance exam as administered by the County of San Diego. Every public safety dispatcher candidate shall be legally eligible for employment in the United States.
  • Dispatchers work rotating shifts, holidays, and weekends to staff the Communications Center 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Dispatchers work 8 or 10 hour shifts and have 2 or 3 consecutive days off per week.


  • Health, Dental, & Vision Plans
  • Life Insurance (up to 3 times yearly salary)
  • Retirement plans (San Diego County Employees Retirement Association, 401a & 457).
  • Sick Leave: 13 days per year
  • Holidays: 13 days per year
  • Vacation: 2 weeks each year after one year of employment, 3 weeks each year after 5 years of employment and 4 weeks each year after 15 years of employment
  • Overtime: Paid at time and a half
  • Premium for bilingual employees
  • Additional $0.55 per hour while working nights

Minimum qualifications

  • At least 18 years of age
  • No felony convictions (Misdemeanor convictions may be disqualifying depending on the number, recency, and severity)
  • Pass a work-simulated computer-based performance test (CritiCall)
  • Be willing to work night shifts, holidays and weekends (24-hour facility)
  • Effective oral and written communication skills in English

Hiring Process

  • Application and Questionnaire
  • CritiCall Examination. For more information on CritiCall, CLICK HERE
  • Preliminary Background Check
  • Interview
  • Complete Background Investigation
  • Computer Voice Stress Analysis
  • Psychological Examination
  • Medical Examination

*Hiring process average time 4-6 months

To apply:

Visit http://agency.governmentjobs.com/sdcounty/default.cfm and search the 911 TELECOMMUNICATIONS category.

Pay Chart

Classification Trainee Step 1 Step 2 Step 3 Step 4 Step 5 Step 6 Step 7
Emergency Services Dispatcher Trainee $22.10
Emergency Services Dispatcher $26.63 $27.96 $29.36 $30.83 $32.74 $34.38 $36.10


The Sheriff’s Department has opportunities for experienced dispatchers to join our team.

HOURLY SALARY: $26.63 – $36.10
*Amount of experience determines Lateral pay. Candidates must have one year of progressively responsible full time experience as a Public Safety Radio Dispatcher for a municipal law enforcement or fire agency within the last 3 years. Experience must include use of a Computer Aided Dispatch system and 9-1-1 emergency and non-emergency call taking.

We Are Hiring!
Applications will be accepted continuously.
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