Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics > Dispatchers > Overview

Dispatchers - Overview

Dispatchers coordinate the movement of workers and motor vehicles.

Dispatchers direct service and emergency vehicles. They keep track of people and vehicles and make sure they are going to the right destination.

Dispatchers usually receive requests for service by phone. They question callers about their needs. They determine the type of response needed for the situation and dispatch the appropriate personnel or equipment.

Dispatchers keep records of the calls they take and the dispatches they make. They use computers to enter this information and monitor the availability of vehicles. They test and check their communication equipment. They make adjustments or call someone to repair it.

There are two types of dispatchers:

Emergency vehicle dispatchers

Emergency vehicle dispatchers monitor alarm systems and receive calls. When burglar or fire alarm systems are activated, dispatchers send out the appropriate safety workers and equipment. Occasionally they provide instruction for emergency medical care to callers. They may give step-by-step instructions about how to give CPR. They use special radios to contact emergency workers.

Emergency vehicle dispatchers direct the activity of:

  • Police cars
  • Fire trucks
  • Ambulances

Goods and services dispatchers

Goods and services dispatchers coordinate the movements of goods and service workers. They send workers to customers who need taxis, plumbing repairs, or other services. They may coordinate the movement of vehicles and freight between cities.

Service dispatchers prepare work orders when customers call. They give copies of work orders to workers. Sometimes they read work orders over the phone or two-way radios. They may relay information between work crews and supervisors.

Source: Illinois Career Information System (CIS) brought to you by Illinois Department of Employment Security.