Emergency Communications Officer

As a Communications Officer in the Emergency Services Agency, you will be the first point of call for all emergencies in the ACT. Responsible for receiving calls, dispatching resources and assisting incident management, the Communications Officer is a key role in the ESA’s operational response.

Communications Officer (Fire & Emergency) apply here.

Communications Officer (Ambulance Call Taker) apply here.

As a Communications Officer in the Emergency Services Agency, you will be the first point of call for all emergencies in the ACT. Responsible for receiving calls, dispatching resources and assisting incident management, the Communications Officer is a key role in the ESA’s operational response.

As a Communications Officer, you'll offer support as the community's first point of contact in an emergency. Your guidance in those critical first minutes of an emergency will provide individuals with support to minimise damage to people, property or environment. Communications Officers work in either of two streams; Fire & Emergency Services (Fire & Rescue, State Emergency Service, Rural Fire Service) or Emergency Medical Response (Ambulance).

Communications Officers are an integral part of the ACT’s emergency response, and work in the Communications Centre at Fairbairn, ACT. As the first point of call for an emergency in the ACT, the professionalism and dedication of the Communications Officers provides the foundation for the first responders to be effective at delivering emergency response.

In the course of a day, you may receive calls about:

  • Structure fires
  • Medical incidents
  • Bush fires
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Technical Rescues
  • Hazardous material incidents
  • Storms and other natural disasters

Responding to emergency triple zero (000) calls, a Communications Officer  needs to be professional and able to prioritise multiple streams of information for complex tasks. Managing high pressure situations, you'll need excellent communication skills and the ability to keep yourself and others calm under pressure.

ACT ESA is dedicated to continuous improvement in the facility of emergency services within the ACT, and as such is undergoing reforms to the Communications Centre. It is anticipated that there will be some changes to the roles and structures within the Communications Centre, it is expected that successful applicants will be flexible and adaptive to these changes.

Communications Officer (Fire & Emergency) apply here.

Communications Officer (Ambulance Call Taker) apply here.

comcen officer

 

Overview

Fire and Emergency

Ambulance Call Taker

FAQs

Are these new positions for the ComCen?

The ESA ComCen is currently proceeding through a reform process and the advertised positions will be subject to changes in current workplace practices. The Communications Officers (Fire & Emergency) are a new position in the ComCen, whilst the Communications Officers (Ambulance Call Taker) are an existing role.

What roles are there in the Communications Centre (ComCen)?

There are two entry positions in the ComCen.

  • Communications Officers (Fire & Emergency) who call-take, dispatch and assist radio operations for ACT Fire & Rescue, ACT State Emergency Service and ACT Rural fire Service, and
  • Communications Officers (Ambulance Call Takers) who receive emergency calls and provide first aid advice for ACT Ambulance Service.

In addition, there are roles within the ComCen occupied by ACT Ambulance and ACT Fire & Rescue staff.

What is the career progression in the ComCen?

Over the course of a career in the ComCen, opportunities may arise for further advancement in terms of pay and skills including:

  • Non-Emergency Patient Transport Dispatch.
  • Emergency Medical Response Dispatch.
  • Large scale Incident Management Team, Radio and Computer Aided Dispatch Operations.
  • As well as other training opportunities.
What hours will be worked as a Communications Officer?

The ESA’s Communications Centre operates 24/7. To accommodate this:

  • The shift pattern for Communications Officers (Fire & Emergency) involves two 12hr days followed by two 12hrs nights, followed by four days off.
  • The shift patterns for Communications Officers (Ambulance Call Takers) are 12hr shifts with a demand roster.
What is the pay?

Applicants for the Communications Officer (Fire & Emergency) will be paid at the Technical Officer Level 1 classification, The base salary for this level is currently $60,130 - $63,043, plus a loading for shift work.

Applicants for the Communications Officer (Ambulance Call Taker) will be paid at the Ambulance Support Officer Level 1 classification. The base salary for this level is currently $60,382 - $64,168, plus a loading for shift work.

Is a uniform required?

Yes, an appropriate Agency uniform will be supplied on successful selection.

Where will I work?

The ESA’s Communications Centre is in Fairbairn, ACT.

How long is the training?

The Communications Officers (Fire & Emergency) course is 14 weeks, fully paid.

The Communications Officer (Ambulance Call Taker) course is 12 weeks, fully paid.

What subjects are covered in the Communications Officers (Fire & Emergency) course?

The course covers in detail all significant aspects of working in an emergency communications centre. This includes:

  • Emergency call taking
  • Resources and vehicles used in the ESA
  • How to dispatch ESA resources,
  • Radio communications
  • Emergency terminology and incident command process
  • Emergencies responded to by ACT Emergency Services.
  • And receive the Certificate III in Emergency Communications Centre Operations
What subjects are covered in the Communications Officers (Ambulance Call Taker) course?

The course covers in detail all significant aspects of working in an emergency communications centre. This includes:

  • ESA introduction
  • Emergency call taking
  • Use of the Computer Aided Dispatch system
  • First Aid and how to instruct over the phone
  • And receive the HLT31015 Certificate III in Ambulance Communications (Call taking)
Is there a fitness requirement?

There is no physical fitness standard, though applicants will be expected to have an ability to work in an environment as described in the Work Environment Description.

All successful applicants will be expected to undergo an ACT Government Pre-Employment medical, including sight and hearing.

Is there a psychological test?

Due to the nature of the work or material you may be exposed to, it is requirement to pass a psychometric test. This will be undertaken at the ESA’s expense as part of the Selection Process.

This will assist determining that staff have the required mental and emotional capability for the role.

What is the selection process for all Communications Officers?
  1. Applications are managed for Communications Officers (Fire & Emergency) and Communications Officers (Ambulance Call Taker) on the jobs.act.gov.au website.
  2. Applicants will be shortlisted, then asked to undertake a psychometric test at ESA’s expense.
  3. Applicants who pass the psychometric will be interviewed.
  4. Successful applicants at this stage will be offered employment or merit-listed subject to a successful pre-employment medical check.
What are the probation arrangements?

Communications Officers (Fire & Emergency) will be hired under the ACT Public Sector Technical and Other Professionals Enterprise Agreement 2018-2021, and consequently will have a probation period of six months covering training with the remainder in the ComCen. Confirmation of appointment will be dependent on the successful completion of the training course.

Communications Officers (Ambulance Call Takers) will be hired under the ACT Public Sector ACT Ambulance Service Enterprise Agreement 2018-2021, and consequently will have a probation period of six months covering training with the remainder in the ComCen. Confirmation of appointment will be dependent on the successful completion of the training course.