Force Contact

Our Force Contact team takes around 3 million 999 and 101 calls per year and controls thousands of incidents and policing operations. It’s the largest department in West Midlands Police, which includes Contact Officers who answer Emergency and Non-Emergency Calls, Public Contact Officers working across ten Public Contact Offices and Dispatchers who deploy Police Officers across the West Midlands to calls for help from the public.

Our roles

Contact Officers at West Midlands Police are the first point of contact for the public to access help, often in emergency situations. The role could never be described as a regular Call Centre job, as Contact Officers will sometimes need to make decisions which can mean the difference between life and death. As a Contact Officer you will encounter distressing and very sad situations, however, it is a hugely rewarding job where no two days are alike where you will feel an immense sense of satisfaction knowing you have helped someone at one of the worst times of their life.

What do you need to be a Contact Officer?

  • The ability to make decisions under pressure
  • Be organised with the ability to prioritise
  • Be able to transcribe and accurately record information
  • Have highly developed problem solving skills
  • Be able to deal with callers who are distressed, angry, upset or aggressive in a professional manner whilst using your influencing and verbal communication skills to gather information
  • Have the ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Be very customer focused with the ability to empathise but take affirmative action
  • Have excellent IT skills and accurate keyboard skills -at least 25 words per minute

 

Dispatchers at West Midlands Police work alongside Contact Officers and pick up the baton once a call for help has been initially dealt with by a Contact Officer. Dispatchers have the critical role of managing police resources on the ground and deciding which officers are sent to which call for help.

Dispatchers need to be ready to deploy a resource to incidents 24/7 and are the invisible link between the public and the police, ensuring the nearest and the right police resource is sent to an incident. They are also the lifeline for the boots on the ground ensuring their safety, being able to send in extra resources quickly if the situation warrants it.

What do you need to be a Dispatcher?

  • Have considerable patience, professionalism and the ability to multi task
  • Able to remain calm to give as much information to the officer on the ground whilst simultaneously managing resources
  • Have strong communication skills
  • Possess the ability to gather and disseminate information to officers as well as remembering officer locations whilst continually adjusting priorities.

Have you got what it takes? Interested?

To apply for a role within our Force Contact Team click here

Additional information

  • Contact Centre Operators and Dispatchers will receive and process all calls for service made, via all channels, to West Midlands Police by the public, other agencies and Forces. Engage with other emergency services, internal departments and external partners as required.
  • Make clear, timely decisions ensuring all calls for service are assessed, graded and dealt with in line with the National Decision Model, THRIVE+ and force policy to a level which enables the safe and effective allocation of appropriate resources.
  • Use all available technology within the contact centre environment. This will include the operation, understanding and interrogation of all IT systems relevant to the role.
  • Deal with calls for service at the first point of contact where appropriate and possible, utilising the Grading Framework to identify the most appropriate service option where resolution is not possible at first point of contact.
  • Deal with and ensure that the appropriate manager is informed and updated regarding any issues pertaining to threat, harm, risk and vulnerability which are likely to impact on or affect service delivery and performance.
  • Apply and work to current local and national standards as applicable e.g.
    • Home Office Counting Rules
    • National Standards of Incident Recording
    • National Call Handling Standards
    • Force Contact Call Handling Standards
  • Provide appropriate support, advice and/or guidance to victims and witnesses.
  • Gather and record intelligence for the purpose of preventing, reducing and detecting crime.
  • Take personal responsibility for daily self-briefing on all appropriate intelligence systems and partake in scheduled briefings.
  • Maintain an up to date understanding and access of all operating systems, protocols, policies and procedures relevant to Force Contact responsibilities.
  • Actively support colleagues in line with any recruitment and training for Force Contact.
  • Carry out such other duties which are consistent with the nature, responsibilities and grading of the post.

Essential skills

  • Accurate keyboard skills, minimum 25 wpm
  • Accurate verbal and written language skills
  • Able to prioritise and multi-task under pressure, achieve deadlines, whilst maintaining quality
  • Be a proven decision maker
  • Take personal responsibility for self-development which the organisation will support e.g. eDR

Selection Process

Applicants will follow our specific recruitment and selection process for Contact Centre roles, which involves:

  • Initial Online Application
  • Online Test (SHL)
  • Online Listening and Prioritising Test
  • Interview
  • Conditional offer of employment -subject to recruitment checks outlined below:
    • Medical checks and clearance
    • Vetting checks and clearance
    • Reference checks and clearance
  • Formal offer of employment

Hours of Work and Shift Patterns

Force Contact operates on a 24/7, 365 days a year basis to be able to deliver a service to our communities across the West Midlands and be there to help those who are in need.

In order to deliver this service our Dispatchers and Contact Handlers work a variety of shift patterns. Your shift pattern will be allocated once you have been successfully selected and formally offered a role with us. The roles attract a shift allowance on top of your basic salary.

 

Have you got what it takes?

Interested?

To apply for a role within our Force Contact Team click here