HOW TO BECOME A POLICE COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER / 999 CALL HANDLER

How to become a Police Communications Officer

The role of a Police Communications Officer is one that requires an ability to remain calm is often stressful and difficult situations. There are approximately 80,000 999 calls every day in the United Kingdom and the in order to answer some of these calls the police force will utilise highly trained communications officers. 

This 100-page insider career book will teach you how to pass the entire police communications officer selection process from tips on passing the application form through to sample call handler tests and interview questions. Before you get a copy of the guide, let’s take a look at what the role involves and how to prepare for the selection process.

The role includes the following duties:

- Answering 999 emergency calls in a specified time frame.

- Obtaining as much relevant and specific information about the call as possible in order to determine the correct response required.

- Keeping the caller calm so that they provide all facts about the incident.

999 Call Operators in action

- Deploying the relevant resources to the location of the incident and deploying back-up resources when required.

- Liaising with police officers who are ‘on the ground’ and providing support and back up information when required.

Of course, the above duties are only a small part of the Communications Officers duties; however, they do provide an excellent overview of what to expect. Furthermore, because the 999 call handling service operates 24-hours a day, 365 days per year, operatives are required to work irregular shift patterns to keep the service going.

Qualities required to become a Police Communications Officer

In order to become a competent Communications Officer candidates will need to demonstrate the following key skills and qualities.

- An ability to remain calm in often difficult and stressful situations.

Some of the calls received can be distressing, especially when the caller is clearly distressed or shocked at what they have witnessed. It will be your job to keep them calm and try to obtain as much information from them about the incident as possible.

- An ability to communicate in a clear and concise manner.

Whilst communications officer are required to listen carefully, they are also required to verbally communicate concisely and accurately. Once they have obtained information relating to the call, they will often have to pass on this information to unformed patrols. If the information is inaccurate this can have severe consequences and the wrong patrol could be dispatched to the wrong address.

- Able to extract relevant information.

Whilst taking 999 calls the Communications Officer will have to extract information from the caller that is relevant to the incident. This requires a large degree of skill and appropriate training. You will be required to use probing questions and tactics during the calls in order to obtain the correct information.

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HOW TO BECOME A POLICE 999 CALL HANDLER 100-PAGE CAREER GUIDE

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This 100-page career guide will teach you how to pass the selection process for becoming a 999 call handler with the police force. It covers the entire application process from sample questions taken from the application form through to example call handler tests and interview questions and answers.

THE POLICE COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER SELECTION PROCESS

The selection and application process for becoming a Communications Officer includes a number of different elements, each required to assess whether or not you have the key skills required to perform the job competently and professionally. 

The application form stage

During the application form you will be assessed as to whether or not you meet the minimum eligibility requirements. This will require you to complete details of personal information, previous addresses, educational qualifications and also previous work experiences. On the form you will also be required to state why you want to become a communications officer and also provide details of type of skills you already have that may be of use in the role.

Assessment centre and call handling test

During the assessment centre you will undergo a series of tests that will assess your ability to carry out the role effectively. In particular you will need to undergo a call handling test. This requires you to listen to an audio extract of an incident whilst typing and taking down the relevant facts of the incident. You do not have to take down all of the information about the incident, but it will be your job to extract all ‘relevant’ information. You will also be assessed on your typing skills. Whilst it can vary, a general rule of 26 words per minute is usually the minimum. 

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The interview

During the interview you will be asked a series of competency based questions such as:

Q. Can you give an example of when you have dealt effectively with a difficult and stressful situation?

Q. Can you give an example of when you have communicated to someone who was either upset or stressed.

In addition to the above types of situational interview question you may also be required to answer more generic and motivational questions such as why you want to become a police communications officer and also how you think working shifts will affect your personal and social life.

To help you we have created an excellent insiders’ guide that covers every element of the selection and application process. This guide is now in stock and available for immediate dispatch.

HOW TO BECOME A POLICE COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER 100-PAGE BOOK


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