Communications Officer (DPS)
Positions in this job family are assigned responsibilities involving the operation of communication equipment in a Department of Public Safety communication center and in providing information to law enforcement officials, other agencies and the general public.
The functions in this job family will vary by level, but may include the following:
Operates radio communication equipment and receives and dispatches radio messages on an assigned shift; provides a communications link for personnel in the field or agency headquarters, other law enforcement officials and related emergency services.
Operates teletype and computer system to obtain information through the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (OLETS), National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (NLETS) or National Crime Information Center (NCIC).
Interprets and relays information to field personnel concerning wanted persons, violations of laws and other criminal activities.
Researches criminal history information as required, including International Police Organization (INTERPOL) data available through the various systems.
Makes immediate decisions on a wide variety of information received through various sources and disseminates to field personnel, agency officials and other law enforcement agencies as appropriate.
Maintains written records and logs of shift activities.
Composes and releases messages concerning accidents, emergencies, hazardous materials, incidents, weather conditions and similar situations to field offices, news media and other law enforcement, civil defense and emergency services.
Plans, organizes and directs communication center operations and programs; assists in the development of agency rules, regulations, and policies concerning the use of communications equipment, staff, and systems.
Coordinates operational and administrative matters with other divisions and agencies, including Highway Patrol troop commanders, civil defense officials, the Department of Transportation, and local law enforcement officials.
Conducts on-site inspections of communications centers to evaluate operations and personnel and ensure compliance with established policies and procedures.
Develops and conducts training programs in communications procedures and requirements; collects, prepares, organizes, and edits instructional materials such as manuals, overhead transparencies, course outlines, and cassettes.
May serve as a member of screening boards in matters related to promotions, hiring, reinstatement and disciplinary actions; represents the agency in matters concerning user agreements and accountability for the operation and security of terminals and use of information.
Monitors security within the communications center or the facility.
The Communications Officer (DPS) job family consists of five levels which are distinguished based on the type and complexity of work, expertise required to perform assigned duties and the responsibility for the supervision or direction of others.
Level I: Code: G10A Salary Band: NA
This is the career level of this job family where incumbents are assigned responsibilities at the full performance level as a Communications Dispatcher, performing highly responsible work in the operation of communication equipment in a Department of Public Safety communication center. Incumbents at this level may be assigned highly independent work as the only operator on an assigned shift.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities required at this level include knowledge of Federal Communications Commission rules and regulations concerning radio communications; of OLETS, NLETS, and NCIC operating manuals; of state and federal laws concerning use of criminal records; of agency communications policies and procedures; of office practices and procedures; and of spelling, punctuation and grammar. Ability to express ideas clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing; to operate radio and telecommunications equipment; to maintain operating efficiency under emergency and stressful conditions; to maintain effective working relationships with others; to follow complex written instructions; and to type accurately from plain copy at the rate of twenty-five words per minute.
Education and Experience requirements at this level consist of (Statutory Requirement: 47 O.S. 1998 Supp. Section 2-105.B.2.b.) “2. No person shall be appointed ... unless the person is a citizen of the United States of America, of good moral character, and: b. for any such position in the Communications Division, a person shall be at least eighteen (18) years of age and shall possess a high school diploma or General Education Development equivalency certificate.
Level II: Code: G10B Salary Band: NA
This is the leadership level of this job family where incumbents are assigned responsibility for directly supervising the operations of an assigned shift as a Communications Supervisor and will directly supervise dispatchers who support the operation of a Department of Public Safety communication center. This includes reviewing the work of assigned staff, providing assistance as needed, evaluating performance, employee development, disciplinary actions and other related tasks.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities required at this level include those identified in Level I plus knowledge of state and federal traffic and criminal laws and regulations and restrictions on use of criminal records; of supervisory principles and practices; and of training methods and practices; and ability to exercise sound judgment in complex situations and adopt appropriate courses of action; and to instruct and supervise the work of others.
Education and Experience requirements at this level consist of those identified in Level I plus three years of experience as a communications dispatcher in a law enforcement communications center.
Level III: Code: G10C Salary Band: NA
At this level employees are primarily assigned responsibilities as a Communications Superintendent for the direction of a Department of Public Safety communication center on a twenty-four hour basis, including direction of supervisory personnel on each shift and management of the overall operations of the communications center. This primarily involves responsibility for a district or regional communication center which is responsible for all communications support within the assigned district or region.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities required at this level include those identified in Level II plus knowledge of state and federal traffic and criminal laws and restrictions on use of criminal records. Ability is required to direct the work of others; to maintain operating efficiency under emergency and stressful situations; and to develop and conduct effective training programs.
Education and Experience requirements at this level consist of those identified in Level II plus two additional years of qualifying experience; including one year in a supervisory capacity.
Level IV: Code: G10D Salary Band: NA
At this level employees are assigned responsibilities as a Communications Coordinator involving the direction of two or more communication centers located within a designated highway patrol region or district or other comparable zone of operations. In this role they will provide coordination between the various communication centers and will assist in developing division operating policies and procedures as well as providing supervision to supervisory or managerial personnel responsible for the operations of individual centers in the assigned location.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities required at this level include those identified in Level III plus the ability to direct the operations of multiple communication centers.
Education and Experience requirements at this level consist of those identified in Level III plus one additional year of qualifying experience and one additional year of experience in a supervisory capacity.
Level V: Code: G10E Salary Band: NA
At this level employees are assigned overall responsibility as a Communications Director for the Department of Public Safety communications program with communication centers located throughout the state, providing communications support to law enforcement officers in the field, as well as other law enforcement agencies and emergency operations support for natural disasters and other situations.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities required at this level include those identified in Level IV plus knowledge of management and personnel practices; of cost analysis and cost allocation; and of current developments in communication systems.
Education and Experience requirements at this level consist of those identified in Level IV plus one additional year of qualifying experience and one additional year of experience in a supervisory capacity.
Prior to entry on duty, final candidates will be scheduled for hearing tests by the hiring agency.
Statutory Requirements (47 O.S. 1998 Supp. Section 2-105.C.1): For positions with the Department of Public Safety, upon initial appointment to the position of Communications Dispatcher, the appointed employee shall be required to serve an initial probationary period of twelve (12) months. The Commissioner may extend the probationary period for up to three (3) additional months.