Emergency Communications Operator

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Police Roles

Staff Roles

Police Staff
Full Time
Command & Control
Portishead, Police Headquarters, Valley Road, Portishead- BS20 8QJ
SC 4

£23,100 - £25,353

Please note, if this is a paid role and the role is part time then the salary quoted will be pro rata based on the hours worked per annum.  
Shift Allowance, Weekend Working Enhancement
Shift allowances of £7,853 - £8,620pa. Total compensation £30,953 - £33,973pa

09/01/2023, 12:00

Would you like to work in our police emergency control room where you have the opportunity to be part of a team who change and save lives every day? Last year we took over a million calls on our 999 emergency and 101 non-emergency telephone lines. Nearly 300,000 of these calls were 999 calls of which we answered over 95% of them within 10 seconds.  Whether it’s supporting a caller by giving lifesaving advice or sending police resources to callers who are in need of our help, you will be making a difference every day.

Our salary package starts at £30,953 (pro rota) and increases each year.  There are also fantastic employee benefits on offer such as on-site gym membership, physical and mental wellbeing support, 24 days annual leave and a generous pension scheme. You will be provided with a uniform and on-site free parking.

The Emergency Communications Operator is the shared job title for the roles of Call Handler and Dispatcher.  You will be working at our award-winning emergency control room at Police Headquarters, Portishead or our secondary control room in Bridgwater (location preference will be discussed at interview).

About the role

As a Call Handler you will be the first point of contact to the people of Avon and Somerset during times of crisis, taking 999 emergency and non-emergency calls and providing immediate support, reassurance and advice.

Dispatcher will work closely with our 999 and 101 Call Handlers to assess the calls received and then advise, direct and deploy police resources.  You will make the decision on how to respond and guide police teams attending the incident.  Part of your role will also include taking 999 calls.

Both roles involve communicating via a headset and using multiple systems and 3-4 desktop screens. 

Your journey with us will start with a 4 to 6 weeks training course where our inspiring team of dedicated trainers will teach you the skills you need to give expert advice to members of the public in the most critical situations.

What we are looking for

You’ll need to be an excellent communicator, the kind of person who can empathise and a natural problem solver.  Previous experience within a customer service environment is great, but more importantly, we’re looking for dedicated team players with excellent verbal communication skills and the ability to work efficiently and accurately.

Your experience shapes who you are and we’re offering you the unique opportunity to bring your own perspectives and apply them to your role every day.  We are dedicated to increasing our ability to better communicate and understand the public we serve, with this in mind, we encourage applicants who converse in multiple languages to apply.

Hours and Training

We are happy to accept applications from people looking for both full time and part time hours.  We have a variety of working patterns available and can discuss these with you at your interview.

For full time roles, you will need to be prepared to work on regular days of the week or a variety of shifts, which will include a proportion of weekends, nights and bank holidays (for example: a 6 on, 4 off pattern consisting of shifts including 7am-5pm, 1pm-11pm, 11pm-7am or a 4 on, 4 off pattern consisting of shifts including 7am-7pm, 7pm-7am)

For part time roles, there are various shift patterns available working days and/or nights only, these hours would be the same as above however flexibility can be given on days and frequency.  

Important - please be aware that the initial training course is on a full time basis (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm) and you will be required to attend Police Headquarters, Portishead for the duration of your course and your initial tutorship (approx 12 weeks)

Why Avon and Somerset Police?

We aim to provide an environment which encourages our employees, we invest in our people and we strive to provide opportunities for our employees to learn, grow and thrive. Our organisation values of caring, inclusive, courageous and learning are at the heart of everything we do.

We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and celebrate individuality. We recognise that people work in different ways and we want to build teams that offer alternative viewpoints and nurture a culture where everyone can bring their true self to their role. We are committed to creating a diverse workforce so that we are truly representative of our communities.  We accept applications from everyone regardless of your background, culture, beliefs, ethnicity, sexual orientation and disability.

Additional information

Our recruitment process:

Familiarisation Event- All applicants* will be invited to attend a familiarisation event, during this session you will learn more about the role, the recruitment process and the training courses. This will be held virtually on MS Teams and is a mandatory part of the process.

Assessment/ Interview- You will be invited to undertake an assessment which will take place at our Police Headquarters in Portishead. Upon successful completion of the assessments, you will have an interview on the same day.  This is an opportunity for you to visit our Portishead headquarters and control room facilities.

Familiarisation Events, Assessments & Interviews will be held between week commencing 5th December 2022 through to 13th January 2023.

We currently have vacancies for both Call Hander and Dispatcher roles and your application will be assessed for suitability across both positions through the recruitment process. 

We welcome our previous applicants to reapply (N.B. if you have passed our eligibility criteria and have not previously failed vetting checks).

The salary and allowances quoted are based on a full time shift pattern and will be paid pro-rata against the hours contracted. 

Please note, once appointed you cannot make an internal application to move from the post of Call Handler or Dispatcher within two years of the date of your appointment. 

*Subject to meeting our eligibility criteria.


About us

Diversity is a strength and individuality is an asset.

We recognise the benefit different life experience and perspectives can bring.

We are on a journey to become the most inclusive police force in the country. 

Find out more about our benefits and culture

Click the video link below to see why our colleagues feel they can "Be the Difference"

Important information before you commence an application (for external applicants)

You will require the following detail to complete this application form:

  • National Insurance Number
  • Identification Detail e.g. passport
  • Address information including proof 
  • Referee information
  • Full employment history including dates and any qualifications you may have attained
  •  Tattoos - you will also be requested to provide photos and describe of any visible tattoos you have

If the role requires you to drive you will also be required to upload details from your full driving licence including photos. 

Important information before you commence an application- for ALL applicants

The application system only remains active on a single page for a period of 60 minutes.

Please ensure you allow time to complete your application fully as part complete pages do not save.  

If the role has evidence questions you may wish to save these remotely and paste your answers into the boxes at time of submission. 

This vacancy is closed to applications.