Portsmouth - Communications Supervisor

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Job Overview

Department Portsmouth Police Department
Job TitleCommunications Supervisor
Salary$63,424.92 - $80,811.49
Location Portsmouth, NH

Job Announcement

Portsmouth, New Hampshire Police Department

Job Description


Standard Workweek- 40 Hour PMA Grade 15 (57,446-73,009) (Mon-Fri primary duty hours between 0500-1900hrs).

Nature of Work

Position provides supervisory, technical, and administrative work in the coordination, operation, and maintenance of a Police, Fire, and EMS Communications Center; supervises trains and schedules dispatch personnel; coordinates and ensures for the accuracy of Computer Aided Dispatching (CAD) and overall IMC systems; operates and maintains all equipment supporting the Communications Center.  Other activities include specialized report preparation and analysis.

Assists in the support of the Police Department servers and interfaces, local area networks and related peripheral devices, security control system, telephone systems, wireless systems such as department radio system infrastructure, device installation and troubleshooting, loading software and updates, system backups, training, evaluating and recommending system and service enhancements and acquisitions, and providing for data and systems security.  Applications used include specialized police information systems (e.g. IMC), office automation systems.


Incumbent works under the general direction of the Operations Support Lieutenant.  The incumbent plans and carries out regular work in accordance with standard practices and previous training, with substantial responsibility for determining the sequence and timing of action and substantial independence in planning and organizing the work activities, including determining the work methods.  Incumbent solves problems of detail or unusual situations by adapting methods or interpreting instructions to resolve a particular problem. Instructions for new assignments or special projects usually consist of statements of desired objectives, deadlines and priorities.  Technical and policy problems or changes in procedures are discussed with supervisor.  Work is generally reviewed only for technical adequacy, appropriateness of actions or decisions, and conformance with policy or other requirements.

Position is responsible for the direct supervision of all Communication Division full-time employees and on-call part-time staff, providing guidance and training, reviewing their work for conformance with Department policies and procedures and any applicable Federal, State or local laws. Employees work on different shifts at the same location as the incumbent.  The workload fluctuates with some predictability throughout the year.  Incumbent has access to confidential personnel files of the division, and criminal investigation records of the Police Department. 

Job Environment

Position requires examining, analyzing and evaluating the Police, Fire, and EMS Communications Center as well as department electronic information systems and determining actions that need to be taken in its operation, coordination, maintenance and/or repair.  Judgement is needed to understand, interpret and comply with complex federal, state and local regulations as they pertain to the operation of the departments and communication systems. Assignments typically involve evaluation and interpretation of factors, conditions or unusual circumstances; inspecting, testing or evaluating compliance with laws and regulations; and determining and supervising the methods to accomplish the work.

The position has daily contact with co-workers, other city departments, and other dispatch agencies, for coordinating and assigning work and rendering services.  The incumbent has regular contact with the public, state agencies, and vendors.  The purpose of these contacts is to obtain information, services, and/or products, respond to inquiries and complaints, render service, give or receive information, or explain policies and procedures.   Contacts occur in person, in writing, via e-mail, and on the telephone.

Position Functions

The essential functions or duties listed below are intended only as illustration of the various types of work that may be performed.  The omission of specific statements of duties does not exclude them from the position if work is similar, related, or a logical assignment to, or extension of the position.

Examples of Essential Functions

  • Supervises the daily operation, coordination, maintenance, and repair of the Police Communications Center Systems as directed by the Chief of These functions include routine installations of computer version/upgrades onto the servers and work stations.
  • Provides direct supervision of all Communications Division personnel including scheduling, training, and compliance with rules, regulations, and standard operating If necessary, performs the function of Public Safety Dispatcher for Police and Fire.
  • Coordinates the Center's response to disaster or emergencies of a complex and critical nature through direct supervision of work activity. 
  • Maintains the accuracy and integrity of the Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) program Maintains the geographical database, design unit response areas, and codes. Designs and runs Computer Aided Dispatch reports providing analysis of the CAD files as requested by Department personnel and outside sources.  Audits dispatch logs for accuracy.
  • Operates, oversees, and/or assists with maintenance on all equipment supporting the Communications Center including: Police Department security system; logging recording equipment; video and audio monitoring and recording equipment; radio systems: base stations, mobiles and portables, radio computer equipment and other associated radio equipment; weather monitoring station; electrical power devices: uninterruptible power supplies, electrical power supply monitor; Fire alarm monitoring panel; State Police On-line Telecommunications System (SPOTS) monitors, modem, cables and printers; all telephone systems: both the business phone system, its voice mail component and the emergency phone system; cellular telephones and pagers.
  • Operates and oversees operation of all equipment supporting the Redundant Dispatch Center including back up sever, interfaces and back up recording devices.
  • Develop department policy and procedures in regards to communications and applicable technology. Ensure that existing department policies and procedures, with respect to communications, are complete and timely.
  • Make copies of audio and video logging recordings as required for evidence, court, and internal needs.
  • Prepares recommendations for the Communications Center operating Administers the budget under the general guidance of the Administrative Manager.
  • Reviews and recommends emerging technologies. 
  • Assists Personnel and Training Division in the hiring process of new Assists with the investigation of complaints and infractions of rules, regulations, and policies.
  • Acts as a liaison between the Police, Fire and Public Works Departments with respect to Communication operations; is the liaison between the City of Portsmouth and the communication Serves as the Departmental representative to the State's 911 Bureau of Emergency Communications operations; represents the Department in meetings with other agencies on issues involving emergency communications and operations.
  • Develop, operate and maintain the department's communications programs such as, Computer Aided Dispatch; assists with administering system operations, including protecting systems from catastrophic failure; developing and implementing security; obtaining, installing and maintaining applications and their upgrade; performing backups, restorations and rebuilds, and providing user orientation training.
  • Recommend and implement the appropriate allocation of resources for hardware, software, and user development to maintain or improve system effectiveness.
  • Monitor system databases and audits for data integrity such as arrests warrants, domestic violence petitions, and orders of commitment having applicability in Researches, manages and deploys new technology for the communication center.
  • Provides technical support to Fire, and other City Department members in the areas of computers, radios, telephones, pagers, and other technology type devices.
  • Provides assistance to and works with the department’s IT Administrator in developing and operating the department’s CAD Computer Aided Dispatch program, Police Reporting computer program and Fire/EMS Management System; assists the IT Administrator with the operation of the department’s local area network.
  • Attend regularly scheduled Coordinate meetings, as needed, with the City IT Department.
  • Supervises and participates in projects assigned by the Chief of Police or designee.
  • Able to respond to emergencies after normal business hours and on weekends.
  • Performs other duties as assigned by the supervisor.
  • Be able to acquire NH SPOTS, FBI CJIS certification as an operator and TAC required.

Recommended Minimum Qualifications

Physical and Mental Requirements

Incumbent works in a moderately noisy dispatch setting and is required to sit more than 2/3'd of the time; talk, listen/hear and reach with hands and arms up to 2/3 rd of the time; use hands, stand, stoop, kneel, crouch or crawl, and walk up to 1/3rd of the time.  Incumbent frequently lifts up to 10 pounds, occasionally lifts up to 30 pounds, and seldom lifts up to 60 pounds. Normal vision, with the ability to distinguish colors, is required for the position.  Equipment operated includes: automobile, hand tools, office machines, and computers.

Education and Experience

A candidate for this position should have a Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent related experience in Electronics, Computer Science, Communications or related field, and five (5) years of police and fire dispatch experience, with at least one (1) year as a supervisor.  Should have proficiency in various operating systems. Experience with radio communications, telephone equipment, computer servers, networks and other technical products.  Valid Driver’s License, NH SPOTS certification, and meets CJIS certification guidelines. Ability to pass a department background check.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

An incumbent in this position consistently demonstrates a (n)...

  • Strong knowledge of the Departments information systems and the use of information systems by public safety agencies.
  • Strong knowledge and implementation of computer hardware and software systems, practices and systems maintenance.
  • Working knowledge of communication software applications used by the Department and provide orientation training in their use.
  • Ability to prepare ad hoc IMC system inquiries for detailed and summary reporting to assist in policing and police administrative functions.
  •  Knowledge of public safety operations, department policies and procedures.
  • The ability to troubleshoot and diagnose problems with computers, communication software, telephone systems, radio systems, SPOTS network systems, and perform repairs as necessary.
  • An ability to communicate effectively with customers, co-workers, other employees, departments, officials and other agencies orally and written. One of the Department representatives in NH CLEAT and IMC.
  • An ability to establish and maintain effective confidential working relationships with officials, other employees and department customers and vendors.
  • Attend additional training as necessary.   EOE/AA

Please direct questions regarding this position to tbarrett@cityofportsmouth.com

Jobs close at 11:59 PM (Eastern) on the deadline date specified, or when the position capacity has been met, or unless otherwise specified in the announcement. If the deadline date is not specified in the announcement, the agency has sole discretion on setting the deadline and jobs may close without notice. It is the applicant's responsibility to thoroughly read and understand the deadline requirements and capacity limits as outlined by the agency.

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