Dispatchers

(NOC 1525)

in All Business, Finance, and Administration

Dispatchers operate radios and other telecommunication equipment to dispatch emergency vehicles and to coordinate the activities of drivers and other personnel. They are employed by police, fire and health departments, other emergency service agencies, taxi, delivery and courier services, trucking and utilities companies, and other commercial and industrial establishments.

Job Outlook

Average

Read more

  • Estimate Weak growth employment change, 2017-2019
  • Estimate 65 openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019
  • Estimate Moderate rate of unemployment in 2016

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

  • Estimate Moderate growth employment change, 2017-2019
  • Estimate 6600 openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019
  • Estimate Low rate of unemployment in 2016

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “average”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is comparable to the average for all occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a moderate sized occupation in Nova Scotia so some job opportunities may occur through turnover. The number employed in this occupation is expected to grow slightly over the next few years, which should provide some additional opportunities for employment. With a large percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to be a key contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Dispatchers most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs may either be permanent or temporary positions, as both are common.

The median employment income for 69% of Dispatchers who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $45,474. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

$15.00

Minimum

$20.83

Median

$31.87

Maximum

Annual Pay

$12,675

Minimum

$40,464

Median

$76,108

Maximum

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

Hourly Pay

$13.00

Minimum

$21.03

Median

$35.90

Maximum

Annual Pay

$6,754

Minimum

$36,515

Median

$70,271

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Dispatchers operate radios and other telecommunication equipment to dispatch emergency vehicles and to coordinate the activities of drivers and other personnel. They are employed by police, fire and health departments, other emergency service agencies, taxi, delivery and courier services, trucking and utilities companies, and other commercial and industrial establishments.

Job duties

Dispatchers perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Receive requests for emergency assistance or service and contact ambulances, police and fire departments, tow-trucks, and utility crews.
  • Process and transmit information and instructions to coordinate the activities of vehicle operators, crews and equipment using a variety of computer-aided communications and dispatching equipment.
  • Dispatch personnel according to written schedules and work orders, or as required by emergency situations.
  • Advise vehicle operators of route and traffic problems such as construction, accidents, congestion, weather conditions, weight and size restrictions and other information.
  • Operate radio equipment to communicate with ships, aircraft, mining crews, offshore oil rigs, logging camps and other remote operations.
  • Monitor personnel workloads and locations.
  • Maintain vehicle operator work records using computerized or manual methods and ensure time sheets and payroll summaries are completed accurately.
  • Maintain computer and manual records of mileage, fuel use, repairs and other expenses, and generate reports.

Sample job titles

  • 911 dispatcher
  • alarm system dispatcher
  • emergency medical dispatcher
  • mail service dispatcher
  • maintenance services dispatcher
  • motor vehicle dispatcher
  • police department dispatcher
  • radio operator
  • utilities maintenance crew dispatcher
  • yard clerk

Skills

To work in these fields, you must be organized and attentive to detail. Your work must be accurate. Good communication skills are important. You need to be able to work as part of a team. Computer skills and the ability to work with technology may be helpful. Emergency dispatchers must be able to work in a high-stress environment.

Job requirements

  • Completion of high school is required.
  • Police and emergency dispatchers are required to complete formal on-the-job training. Other dispatchers usually undergo some informal on-the-job training.
  • Police and emergency dispatchers and other radio operators usually require provincial radio operator's certificates.

Other considerations

None

By the numbers

Quick look

790

employed in 2016

91.6%

employed full-time

2.5%

self employed

57.1%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
42.9%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
44

median age

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

63,775

employed in 2016

81.3%

employed full-time

6.6%

self employed

73.4%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
26.6%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
47.9

median age

Where will I likely work?

52.6%

Halifax

17.1%

Northern

12.0%

Annapolis Valley

9.1%

Southern

8.6%

Cape Breton

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

Northern

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

32.1%

Public Administration

29.6%

Transportation and Warehousing

7.5%

Management, Admin & Other Support

6.9%

Health Care and Social Assistance

5.7%

Retail Trade

What is the age of Employment?

31.0%

35-44

23.8%

45-54

19.0%

55-64

17.9%

25-34

4.8%

15-24

3.6%

65+

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

36.5%

45-54

28.0%

55-64

18.6%

35-44

10.7%

65+

6.0%

25-34

Top levels of education

32.7%

High school

$30,505 median annual income
31.0%

College certificate or diploma

$33,179 median annual income
17.0%

Bachelor's degree

$25,825 median annual income
8.8%

Less than high school

$30,002 median annual income
5.3%

Trades certificate

N/A

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

34.4%

College certificate or diploma

$33,837 median annual income
23.7%

High school

$30,074 median annual income
22.9%

Bachelor's degree

$39,473 median annual income
5.8%

Trades certificate

$32,871 median annual income
4.7%

Less than high school

$23,775 median annual income

Education & training

Adult high school/secondary diploma programs

This program is typically offered at the high school level.

This instructional program class comprises any program that defines the prescribed requirements, specified by the appropriate jurisdiction, for the completion of and graduation from a secondary school program of academic subject matter offered for adult learners outside of the regular secondary school program. This does not include adult compensatory education programs resulting in completion of a high school equivalency certificate or diploma.

Institutions providing this program

Universite Sainte-Anne

Siège Social: 1695, Route 1

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS B0W 1M0

(902) 769-2114

Nova Scotia Community College - Annapolis Valley Campus

50 Elliott Road

Lawrencetown, NS B0S 1M0

(902) 825-3491

Nova Scotia Community College - Cumberland Campus

PO Box 550, 1 Main Street

Springhill, NS B0M 1X0

(902) 597-3737

Nova Scotia Community College - Akerley Campus

21 Woodlawn Road

Dartmouth, NS B2W 2R7

(902) 491-4900

Nova Scotia Community College - Burridge Campus

372 Pleasant Street

Yarmouth, NS B5A 2L2

(902) 742-3501

Nova Scotia Community College - Kingstec Campus

236 Belcher Street

Kentville, NS B4N 0A6

(902) 678-7341

Nova Scotia Community College - Lunenburg Campus

75 High Street

Bridgewater, NS B4V 1V8

(902) 543-4608

Nova Scotia Community College - Institute of Technology Campus

5685 Leeds Street

Halifax, NS B3K 2T3

(902) 491-6722

Nova Scotia Community College - Pictou Campus & School of Fisheries

PO Box 820, 39 Acadia Avenue

Stellarton, NS B0K 1S0

(902) 752-2002

Nova Scotia Community College - Shelburne Campus

PO Box 760, 1575 Lake Road

Shelburne, NS B0T 1W0

(902) 875-8640

Nova Scotia Community College - Strait Area Campus & Nautical Institute

226 Reeves Street

Port Hawkesbury, NS B9A 2A2

(902) 625-2380

Nova Scotia Community College - Marconi Campus

PO Box 1042, 1240 Grand Lake Road

Sydney, NS B1P 6J7

(902) 563-2450

Nova Scotia Community College - Truro Campus

36 Arthur Street

Truro, NS B2N 1X5

(902) 893-5385

Employment requirements & contacts

No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile

Contacts

Trucking Human Resource Sector Council Atlantic
14 Court Street, Suite 301
Truro, NS B2N 5V2
Tel: (902) 893-8410
Fax: (902) 895-6984

Additional resources

There are no additional resources for this occupation.

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