Your organization’s success and the smooth running of your business’s operation depend on various factors, such as the types of employees you hire. Using a good job description for the role of a dispatcher is paramount since that determines the kind of applicants you will attract for the job.
Where effective coordination and communication are expected, the process of hiring a dispatcher demands careful consideration.
This comprehensive guide will explore the responsibilities of a dispatcher, the job description, and a step-by-step process to help you find the ideal candidate for your business.
Responsibilities & Role of a Dispatcher
Dispatchers’ expertise in coordinating and managing various tasks will help to optimize organizational operations and ensure timely response. Before we get into hiring, it’s important to know the main job duties of a dispatcher.
While the exact tasks can differ based on the industry and the company, these are fundamental to a dispatcher’s role:
- Coordination of operations and problem resolution: The dispatcher will play a pivotal role in coordinating the activities of drivers, technicians, or service personnel, making sure that schedules are followed, routes are optimized, and resources are allocated efficiently to meet service demands. They will be adept at resolving problems, addressing inquiries, and ensuring that services are delivered as promised.
- Communication hub and resource allocation: The person in this role will serve as the central communication hub, relaying critical information between field personnel and management and ensuring that everyone is on the same page regarding schedules, changes, or emergencies. The dispatcher will efficiently allocate resources such as vehicles, equipment, or personnel to meet operational demands while minimizing downtime and maximizing productivity.
- Record keeping: Maintaining accurate records of service requests, schedules, and incidents will be their domain. These records are vital for tracking performance, analyzing trends, and addressing any disputes or claims.
- Emergency response: Your potential dispatcher is responsible for coordinating emergency response efforts. They must act swiftly and decisively to ensure customers’ and field personnel’s safety and well-being.
How to Hire a Dispatcher
Following a structured hiring process is essential to ensure you hire a competent and reliable dispatcher.
Here is a step-by-step guide to help you find the right candidate:
1. Know Your Dispatcher’s Requirements
Before you jump into hiring a dispatcher, take a moment to outline your specific requirements.
Think about the following aspects:
- Industry and Sector: Your specific industry will influence the dispatcher’s responsibilities. For instance, a medical dispatcher has different tasks compared to a logistics dispatcher.
- The Scale of Operations: The size of your operations and the volume of tasks will determine whether you need a full-time or part-time dispatcher.
- Technological Proficiency: Consider the level of technical proficiency required, especially if your operations rely heavily on digital systems and software.
By identifying your requirements, you can more clearly convey the skills and qualifications needed for the job.
2. Job Posting and Advertising
Once you have a clear understanding of your dispatcher requirements, craft an appealing job listing and distribute it across multiple channels:
- Online Job Boards: Make the most of renowned online job platforms like Facebook, Indeed, LinkedIn, Monster, or specialized industry websites. This broadens your reach to a diverse candidate pool.
- Gig Economy Platforms: Like SimplyHired and GigSmart are excellent digital hubs to find dispatchers. Use them to locally source the best fit for the role.
- Company Website: Showcase the job posting prominently on your company’s website. This strategy can capture the attention of candidates already familiar with your organization.
- Professional Networks: Tap into professional networks and associations specific to your industry. These networks often yield experienced dispatcher candidates who are well-versed in the field.
- Local Media: Explore the option of advertising the job in local newspapers or magazines, especially if your business has a strong local presence. This can attract candidates deeply rooted in the community.
- Employee Referrals: Motivate your current workforce to refer potential candidates. Employee referrals frequently result in high-quality hires due to the trust and familiarity existing among colleagues.
3. Application Screening
As you receive applications and resumes, screen them to assess their qualifications, certifications, and skills. When screening the applications, look out for specific expertise you need.
It is important to hire a candidate with specific knowledge about your industry to provide solutions that are tailored to your company.
- Strong Communication Skills: Ensure candidates have excellent verbal and written communication skills for interaction. The skills will help in relaying instructions and addressing issues.
- Relevant Experience: Look for candidates with experience in dispatching or a related field. Prior experience is often a strong indicator of a candidate’s suitability.
- Technical Skills: Evaluate candidates’ proficiency with relevant software, communication tools, and equipment used in your industry.
Assess some certifications, such as:
- Certified Public-Safety Executive (CPE): Having this certification gives a dispatcher experience in public safety communications. It covers topics such as leadership, management, and organizational development, so this will be a plus for your organization.
- Emergency Number Professional (ENP): This is for individuals who have a solid understanding of 9-1-1 operations; it demonstrates expertise in the field of emergency communications and management. Dispatchers with this certificate will make a huge contribution to any organization.
- Certified Training Officer (CTO): The program is intended for training officers responsible for dispatch training programs. It covers best practices in training and development for public safety telecommunicators.
Look for the following skills in their resume:
- Communication Skills
- Crisis Management
- Geographical Knowledge
- Technical Proficiency
- Problem-Solving Skills
- Customer Service
4. Conduct Interviews
Shortlist candidates based on their applications and conduct interviews to assess their qualifications and suitability. Customize your interview questions to evaluate the following:
Assess their understanding of your industry’s specific requirements and challenges. Dispatchers need strong communication skills to coordinate effectively, so try to evaluate their ability to articulate information clearly and concisely.
They often work in high-pressure environments, so endeavour to inquire about their ability to handle stress and make quick decisions.
To gauge their conflict resolution abilities, present scenarios where they might need to resolve disputes or manage difficult situations.
Select individuals who grasp your company’s demands, excel in customer communication, and possess strong crisis management skills along with technical proficiency. These competencies will enhance your business and attract and retain more customers.
5. Technical Proficiency Assessment
Depending on your industry, consider conducting a technical proficiency assessment to evaluate candidates’ familiarity with relevant software, tools, or equipment. Dispatchers rely on various software to efficiently manage operations, coordinate resources, and communicate with team members.
Here are some relevant software and tools that a dispatcher typically needs:
- Dispatch Software: Dedicated dispatch software like ServiceTitan, Verizon Connect, and Samsara are at the core of a dispatcher’s toolkit to help with job assignment, scheduling, route optimization, and real-time tracking of assets or personnel.
- GPS and Navigation Systems: GPS technology like Garmin, TomTom, and Google Maps is essential for tracking vehicles and assets, optimizing routes, and ensuring timely deliveries.
- Communication Systems: They use two-way radios, mobile devices, and communication software to stay in touch with drivers, field personnel, and other team members.
- Fleet Management Software: For organizations with a fleet of vehicles, fleet management software helps monitor vehicle performance, maintenance schedules, and fuel consumption. Software like Geotab and Fleet Complete is commonly used.
- Job Ticketing Systems: Dispatchers often use job ticketing or work order systems to create and assign tasks, track progress, and capture essential job details. Examples include FieldEdge and Synchroteam.
- CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Software: If dispatchers interact with customers directly, CRM software helps manage customer information, inquiries, and service requests. Popular CRM options are Salesforce and HubSpot CRM.
6. Check References and Background
Contact the candidate’s references to gain insights into their work ethic, reliability, and overall performance. Ask about their ability to meet deadlines, handle stressful situations, and interact with colleagues. Additionally, perform background checks to verify the candidate’s work history and any relevant certifications.
Consider asking these questions:
- Can you discuss the candidate’s proficiency with dispatching software, GPS systems, or other relevant tools?
- Did the candidate demonstrate a commitment to safety protocols and regulations in their previous role?
- Can you provide insights into the candidate’s customer service skills and ability to handle customer inquiries or complaints?
- Would you rehire the candidate if given the opportunity? Why or why not?
Dispatcher Job Description
A well-defined job description is essential for attracting the right candidates. Below, you’ll find an illustrative dispatcher job description.
Job Title: Dispatcher
Company: [Your Company Name]
Job Type: [Full Time / Part Time / Contract]
Salary: [Salary / Competitive / DOE]
[Provide a brief description of your company, its mission, and its commitment to delivering exceptional service.]
Are you a detail-oriented and organized individual looking to play a critical role in coordinating our operations effectively? Join our team at as a Dispatcher and ensure the seamless execution of our services. As a dispatcher with us, you’ll play a central role in ensuring the smooth flow of operations while contributing to our commitment to excellence in service delivery.
- Coordinate and schedule service requests, assigning tasks to field personnel.
- Act as the central communication point between field teams, customers, and management.
- Handle service inquiries, resolve issues, and provide updates to customers.
- Monitor schedules and make real-time adjustments to optimize operations.
- Maintain accurate records of service requests, schedules, and incidents.
- Coordinate emergency response efforts when required.
- Ensure the efficient allocation of resources to meet operational demands.
- Collaborate with other departments to streamline processes and improve service delivery.
Your Qualifications and Skills:
- [Specify Years] years of experience in dispatching or a related field.
- Proficiency in [Specify Relevant Software or Tools].
- Strong communication and problem-solving skills.
- Detail-oriented with the ability to multitask effectively.
- Ability to work in high-pressure situations and make quick, informed decisions.
Benefits and Perks:
- Competitive salary and performance-based compensation.
- Healthcare coverage.
- Flexible hours.
- Opportunities for professional development.
- A dynamic and collaborative work environment.
- Employee discounts and other perks.
- 401(k) retirement plans.
- Paid time off (PTO).
- Employee assistance programs (EAPs).
- Company discounts.
- Transportation allowance.
- Recognition and awards.
- Career Advancement.
- Wellness programs.
- Employee events.
- Employee referral bonuses.
- Stock options.
How to Apply:
If you are a dedicated and organized individual with a passion for coordination and problem-solving, we invite you to apply for the Dispatcher position at [Your Company Name]. Please send your resume and a cover letter detailing your qualifications to [email address] with the subject line “Application for Dispatcher Position – [Your Name].”
[Your Company Name] is an employer that welcomes applicants of all backgrounds and experiences.
Closing Date for Applications: [Insert Closing Date]
Please be aware that we will only reach out to candidates who have been selected for interviews. We sincerely thank you for your keen interest in joining our committed team at [Your Company Name].
Note: This job description template can be tailored to your specific requirements and the dispatcher role you aim to fill, providing a clear overview of the role and its responsibilities.
How Much Does it Cost to Hire a Dispatcher?
Bringing a dispatcher on board necessitates a financial commitment that businesses must account for when budgeting for this pivotal position. To guarantee a seamless hiring procedure and uphold a financially sustainable operational plan, it’s imperative to consider these costs.
Let’s delve into a detailed breakdown of the expenditures linked to recruiting a dispatcher:
Hiring expenses for dispatchers encompass a range of costs. These include job advertising expenses, which can vary from a few hundred to a couple of thousand dollars depending on platforms and listing duration. Background checks, crucial for security, typically cost between $20 and $100 per candidate, and recruitment agencies charge a fee based on the hired candidate’s salary, which can range from 15% to 30% of the annual salary.
- Posting on LinkedIn is free, but for a wider reach, you can spend $10 for a daily budget and $300 monthly.
- Indeed offers a free plan for employers but you can enjoy the paid plan starting at $120 per month for unlimited job postings for 30 candidates.
- Set your own budget on Monster starting at an average of $12 per day and pay only when candidates view or apply to your job.
- SimplyHired is always free to use for job seekers to apply to jobs. The platform uses a cost-to-contact method and is also free for employers to post jobs and look at the résumés of applicants. The only cost to employers is when they would like to view contact details and reach an applicant directly.
- Shift Gigs are subject to a fee of 25% of the worker’s total compensation, with a minimum fee of $25.00 for Gigs totalling less than $100.00. Add-ons like Background Checks and MVR Checks have the same fee structure, with a 25% fee and a minimum of $25.00. For Full/Part-Time Position posts, pricing varies based on post duration, starting at $90.00 for a 1-week plan and going up to $600.00 for a 3-month plan. Additionally, you can boost your post for increased visibility.
For in-person interviews, employers may need to cover travel expenses, including transportation and accommodation. Some employers also employ pre-employment assessments to evaluate candidates. Moreover, additional advertising costs may apply if the job listing is promoted through paid online platforms like LinkedIn or Facebook.
Compensation and Benefits
The compensation and benefits for a dispatcher can vary significantly depending on factors such as the industry, location, the size of the employer, and the dispatcher’s level of experience and responsibilities.
The average salary of a dispatcher is $18.77 per hour and $66,137 per year based on the abovementioned factors.
Consider the cost of providing health insurance, retirement benefits, and other perks; depending on the role’s demands, you may need to budget for overtime pay.
Allocate a budget for training materials, resources, or software licenses, especially if specialized software is used in your industry. If dispatchers require external training or certifications, account for these costs.
Software and Tools
Dispatchers often require specialized software and tools for their work. The cost of acquiring and licensing dispatch software, GPS systems, communication tools, and other technology can add up, depending on the complexity of the system.
- Dispatch Software: Dedicated dispatch software like ServiceTitan, costing $398 per month, Verizon Connect, costing $20 – $40 per month; and Samsara, which costs $27 – $30 per month.
- GPS and Navigation Systems: Garmin costs $5.99 per month, and Google Maps is $2 – $30 per 1,000 requests.
- Fleet Management Software: Software like Geotab offers four plans: Base, HOS, Pro, and ProPlus, so choose anyone you deem fit. Fleet Complete offers a $25 monthly subscription and a starting price of $200 monthly for hosting services.
Workspace and Infrastructure
These costs encompass the setup and maintenance of a dedicated workspace for the dispatcher, including the provision of necessary equipment such as computers, phones, and communication tools. Additionally, infrastructure costs may include installing and maintaining dispatch software, GPS systems, and other technology essential for the dispatcher’s role.