Communications Call Taker for 9-1-1 Dispatch

Clackamas County - Oregon City, OR3.7

Communications (9-1-1) Call Takers are considered to be the core of the 9-1-1 system and are the professionals called upon to help those who need to be heard, when something is happening to them, their loved ones or just someone next to them. A Call Taker's main goal is make each caller feel they received help from a competent, considerate and courteous professional. This is exactly the type of service Call Takers at Clackamas County provide to every single person who reaches out to them. They are strong and powerful individuals, who make up the most integral part of the 9-1-1 system and set the foundation for the best resolution of each call or situation possible.

Are you passionate about helping others?

Do you want to make a difference in people’s lives every day?

Do you have a “gift” for being able to remain calm in stressful situations?

Are you “quick on your feet” and able to make critical decisions promptly?

Are you an excellent communicator?

Are you known for your exceptional listening skills?

Do you have outstanding problem-solving skills?

Have you considered starting an incredibly rewarding career?

If you answered "yes" to the questions above, we want you to join our team as a Communications Call Taker with the Clackamas County Communications (C-COM) 9-1-1 Department. As a Communications Call Taker, you will play a critical role in providing services and support that enhance the well-being of citizens you will serve.

We are searching for motivated, confident, composed and customer service focused individuals to step into the role of a first contact person a caller faces, when they reach out for help to the 9-1-1 system. As a Communications Call Taker you will have an opportunity to receive emergency and non-emergency calls; maintain logs and records in a central dispatch center characterized by multiple users and wide geographic scope; to operate computer devices designed to retrieve and store information; to refer a variety of telephone inquiries to appropriate services or sources within the County and to provide other public service information.

As an employee of the Clackamas County Communications (C-COM) 9-1-1 Department, you are expected to meet the highest standards of professional conduct and ethics while on the job, and also to maintain those same high standards when taking actions in your personal life that could reflect on the Department.

The center's schedule is based upon a standard seven-day work week with dispatchers working 4 days on and 3 days off.

Incumbents must successfully complete the Communications Call Taker training program within established training timelines.

This recruitment will be used to establish an eligibility list of qualified candidates to fill vacancies in the CCOM 911 Department over the life of the eligibility list, which typically is about six (6) months.

Required Minimum Qualifications/ Transferrable Skills:*

Must be at least 18 years of age as of the close date of this recruitment process (11:59 PM (Pacific Time) on Wednesday, July 31, 2019)

Must possess a high school diploma or GED certificate of high school equivalency

Corrected vision shall be at least 20/30 in each eye. Depth perception shall be sufficient to demonstrate stereopsis adequate to perform the essential tasks of the job. Visual Field Performance shall be 140 degrees in the horizontal meridian combined.

Hearing in both ears must be sufficient enough to perform essential tasks without posing a direct threat to themselves or others. Applicant may not have an average loss of hearing greater than 25 decibels (dB) at the 500, 1,000, 2,000, 3,000, 4,000, and 6,000-Hertz (Hz) levels in either ear or single ear hearing loss in excess of 25 dB Hz.

Typing speed of 35 Words per Minute (WPM)

Must be willing to work weekends, holidays and rotating day, evening and night work schedules

Must be free from criminal convictions, other than minor traffic violations

Must pass an extensive background investigation, including national fingerprint records check

Must pass a pre-employment drug test

Must pass a post-offer health screening, including vision, hearing and speaking abilities. Accommodation requests will be reviewed on an individual basis in compliance with State and Federal legislation.

Possession of a valid driver's license or an acceptable alternative method of transportation. Accommodation requests for an acceptable alternative method of transportation will be reviewed on an individual basis in compliance with State and Federal legislation or based on the Communications Department business needs. Specific information on the County's driving policy can be found at Driving and Vehicle Policy (EPP 52).

Please Note: Anyone hired into the Communications Call Taker position will be required to have the ability to arrive at any primary or alternate worksite at any time of the day or night, regardless of the weather conditions.

Other Requirements:
Ability to meet Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST) various preconditions for Dispatcher certification, including but not limited to education and age requirements listed above under Required Minimum Qualifications.

Possession of or ability to obtain within established training timelines (currently set at 400 training hours):

Law Enforcement Data System (L.E.D.S.) certification

Department of Public Safety Standards and Training certification as a Telecommunicator and Emergency Medical Dispatcher (E.M.D.)

Cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (C.P.R.) certification

Other certifications required by statute

Accurately following precise protocols and procedures in stressful situations

Strong organization, multitasking and prioritization skills

Good judgment and problem solving skills

Ability to handle a wide range of situations and circumstances effectively, positively and professionally

Excellent written and oral communication skills, including ability to quickly determine the “who”, “what”, “when”, “where” and “why” within a conversation

Preferred Special Qualifications/ Transferrable Skills:*

Experience in a public safety setting

  • For Veterans qualified for Veteran’s Preference: If you believe you have skills that would transfer well to this position and/or special qualifications that relate to this position, please list those skills and/or qualifications in the open-ended question at the end of the application and explain how those skills and/or qualifications relate to this position.

Duties may include but are not limited to the following:
Receives requests for law, fire and EMS services by phone; questions caller to gather data concerning the nature of the call; determines if the call must be handled by law, fire or EMS service; determines priority of the call; enters call for services to be dispatched.
Receives telephone call reporting incidents not requiring dispatch of field units; speaks with callers to determine the nature of the incident and refers or transfers callers appropriately.
Operate computer aided dispatching computer workstation and VESTA telephone computer workstation during call taking and call entry for dispatch.
Attend regular training in dispatch skills to maintain understanding of dispatch needs in order to effectively gather call information.


Knowledge of: Computerized data retrieval; Basic English, spelling, grammar and composition; basic math; recordkeeping techniques; knowledge of theories, practices and techniques of human behavior.

Skill to: Speak, understand and write English clearly, concisely and accurately; operate computer terminals and a keyboard to transcribe simultaneous oral communications and/or handwritten copy; communicate tactfully, compassionately and effectively with a variety of people including those who are experiencing extreme emotional upset, who may have cognitive difficulty, or who may be under the influence of mind-altering substances; use street maps and computer mapping systems to locate addresses, streets and block numbers; compare and check numerical and alphabetical sequences for accuracy; use computers and Windows based operating systems; take information from multiple sources regarding an ongoing situation and produce an accurate narrative with key elements and facts; listen and/or give instructions while quickly and accurately entering information using a keyboard; remember and accurately transcribe spoken information including names, addresses, sequences of letters and numbers, descriptions and directions; prioritize tasks, adjust priorities and remain focused when the number and variety of tasks change or when faced with situations that may be upsetting; establish and maintain effective working relationships with County staff, public safety agencies and the public.


This position works in a County department that is open 7-days a week, 365-days a year. Shifts for this position include evenings, weekends and holidays. The center's schedule is based upon a standard seven-day work week with dispatchers working 4 days on and 3 days off. Specific hours of work will be discussed with the candidate selected for the position at the time an offer of employment is extended.


Clackamas County is in a prime location in the Portland, Oregon metropolitan area and is recognized nationally as one of the most livable areas in the United States. Located on the southern edge of the City of Portland and extending to the top of Mt. Hood, Clackamas County is part of a thriving region in the Northwest. It has a population of about 400,000 citizens.

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Clackamas County Core Values

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Equity, Diversity and Inclusion


The Clackamas County Department of Communications, also known as C-COM (pronounced see-COM), provides 9-1-1 emergency and non-emergency call taking service to the public. C-COM also provides radio dispatch services to 6 law enforcement agencies and 8 fire districts and departments.

Learn more about Clackamas County C-COM


Clackamas County only accepts online applications.

Help With Your Application:
Application Process

Help with the Application

If you have any questions or issues you may contact the Department of Human Resources at 503-655-8459 or e-mail us. Our office hours are Monday - Thursday 7:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Pacific Time (closed on Fridays).


Request Veterans' Preference

Learn more about the County's Veterans' Preference


Clackamas County does not offer visa sponsorships. Within three days of hire, applicants will be required to complete an I-9 and confirm authorization to work in the United States.


Clackamas County is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We value diversity, equity, and inclusion as essential elements that create and foster a welcoming workplace. All qualified persons will be considered for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, political affiliation, disability or any other factor unrelated to the essential functions of the job.

If you wish to identify yourself as a qualified person with a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act and would like to request an accommodation, please address the request to the Department of Human Resources prior to the recruitment close date. You may request an accommodation during the online application process.


We encourage you to print out this job posting for specific information on the TESTING and SELECTION process.


Applicants must pass ALL STEPS of the testing process. A summary of the testing and selection process steps is outlined below.

This is a tentative timeline and is subject to change. We want to provide a general idea of the timeline to the applicants, since this recruitment process includes multiple steps. After the completion of each step of the process, all applicants will be notified of their status by email.


After the recruitment close date, applicants' responses to the multiple choice screening questions will be assessed. In order to pass this initial questionnaire screening, applicants must meet the required minimum qualifications (listed above in the Job Introduction section) and be willing and able to work in the working conditions described in the screening questions.


A fully completed Preliminary Statement of Personal History (pSPH) is required for the comprehensive background check. The pSPH can be downloaded through the following link: Preliminary Statement of Personal History (pSPH) Form.

Candidates are required to submit the preliminary Statement of Personal History (pSPH) electronically by the designated deadline in order to complete the application process. Letters of reference, legal documents, etc. are NOT needed at this step of the process.

IMPORTANT: The completed pSPH form can be submitted at ANY TIME WHILE THE RECRUITMENT IS OPEN. However, it must be submitted no later than 11:59 PM (Pacific Time) on Wednesday, July 31, 2019 (Instructions for submission are detailed below).

Download the electronic fillable PDF version of the Preliminary Statement of Personal History (pSPH) form and save it. Fill out the pSPH form and email the completed form to Megan Neece at as an attachment.

When you are submitting the pSPH form via email, please make sure to provide it either in a .pdf, .doc or .docx file.

Please DO NOT submit the form in a .pgs or .pages extension.

In the event your email does not go through and is returned, please contact Megan Neece at (503) 655-8370.


You should expect to receive an email confirming receipt of your pSPH within three (3) business days after your submission. If you have not heard back within three (3) business days, please email Megan Neece at


Applicants who submit all of the required materials by the recruitment close date/time and pass the application screening, will be invited to take the CritiCall test. Applicants do not need prior 9-1-1 call taking or dispatching experience to take this test. This is a computerized test, which evaluates typing speed, entering data, multi-tasking, memory recall, prioritization, reading maps and understanding directions, and reading and comprehending written text.

IMPORTANT: CritiCall testing for this recruitment process will be administered ONLINE. Applicants will be able to take the CritiCall test at a location of their choice. Those applicants who are selected to take the CritiCall test, will receive an email with detailed information and specific instructions on how to complete the testing process. Applicants must complete the CritiCall test by the established deadline that will be during the week of August 12, 2019.


Applicants passing the CritiCall testing will be placed on the eligibility register and referred to the Clackamas County Communications 9-1-1 (CCOM) Department for selection interviews, in accordance with the Clackamas County Personnel Ordinance rules. The most qualified candidates on the eligibility register will be referred to the hiring department for the hiring interviews and other selection processes. Additional names may be referred from the eligibility register, if provided for under the County’s Personnel Ordinance. Open eligibility registers will be used for three (3) to six (6) months, and could possibly be extended up to one (1) year. In the event there are additional openings for this position, the established eligibility register will be used to fill these openings.

As part of a department interview, candidates will also be required to take a two (2) hour pre-offer, non-medical suitability screening.

The department interviews have been TENTATIVELY scheduled during the week of August 19, 2019. Please plan ahead to be available at least on one of these days.


Background investigations, including fingerprinting, will be conducted for the most competitive candidates. Background investigations are comprehensive; therefore, they can take on average between four (4) and six (6) weeks to complete. In order for the background investigation to proceed in a timely fashion, candidates must complete all entries on the Statement of Personal History (SPH) form, submit required documents, and encourage references to respond immediately to their investigator’s telephone calls. Candidates who fail to provide information in a timely manner may be disqualified to continue in this recruitment process.


Candidates who receive conditional job offers after the department interview and pass the background investigation will attend a post-offer psychological evaluation.

Candidates who pass the psychological evaluation will then take a post-offer pre-employment drug test and a post-offer health screening, which tests for sufficient vision, hearing, and speaking ability.


Communication Call Takers attend an in-house academy to learn the basic knowledge and skills to process calls as well as attend the three (3) week DPSST training academy in Salem, Oregon. The academy includes lessons on call control, law enforcement data systems, medical Miranda, and agency policies and procedures. After this academy, trainees work with a coach, taking 9-1-1 and non-emergency calls. The entire Call Taker training program can take up to six (6) months to complete.