Career and Education Opportunities for Dispatchers in Chicago, Illinois
There are many career and education opportunities for dispatchers in the Chicago, Illinois area. There are currently 8,660 working dispatchers in Illinois; this should grow 3% to 8,950 working dispatchers in the state by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for dispatchers are expected to shrink by about 2.6%. In general, dispatchers schedule and dispatch workers, work crews, or service vehicles for conveyance of materials, freight, or passengers, or for normal installation, service, or emergency repairs rendered outside the place of business.
Income for dispatchers is about $17 hourly or $36,890 yearly on average in Illinois. Nationally, their income is about $16 hourly or $33,850 annually. Dispatchers earn more than people working in the category of Dispatching and Logistics generally in Illinois and more than people in the Dispatching and Logistics category nationally.
The Chicago area is home to 180 schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can get a degree as a dispatcher. Given that the most common education level for dispatchers is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a dispatcher if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Dispatcher
In general, dispatchers schedule and dispatch workers, work crews, or service vehicles for conveyance of materials, freight, or passengers, or for normal installation, service, or emergency repairs rendered outside the place of business. They also duties may include using radio, telephone, or computer to transmit assignments and compiling statistics and reports on work progress.
Dispatchers advise personnel about traffic problems such as construction areas and other hazards. They also talk with customers or supervising personnel to address questions and requests for service or equipment. Equally important, dispatchers have to decide on types or amounts of equipment or personnel required in line with work orders or specifications. They are often called upon to monitor personnel or equipment locations and utilization to direct service and schedules. They are expected to schedule and dispatch staff, work crews or service vehicles to appropriate locations in line with customer requests or needs, using radios or telephones. Finally, dispatchers record and maintain files and archives of customer requests, work or services performed, charges and other dispatch data.
Every day, dispatchers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment.
It is important for dispatchers to receive or ready work orders. They are often called upon to manage needed repairs to restore service and schedules. They also oversee all communications within specifically assigned territories. They are sometimes expected to relay work orders and data to or from work crews and field inspectors using telephones or two-way radios. Somewhat less frequently, dispatchers are also expected to order supplies and equipment, and issue them to personnel.
And finally, they sometimes have to record and maintain files and archives of customer requests, work or services performed, charges and other dispatch data.
Like many other jobs, dispatchers must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chicago include:
- Freight Representative. Expedite and route movement of incoming and outgoing cargo and freight shipments in airline, train, and trucking terminals, and shipping docks. Take orders from customers and arrange pickup of freight and cargo for delivery to loading platform. Prepare and examine bills of lading to determine shipping charges and tariffs.
- Front Desk Manager. Accommodate hotel, motel, and resort patrons by registering and assigning rooms to guests, issuing room keys, transmitting and receiving messages, keeping records of occupied rooms and guests' accounts, making and confirming reservations, and presenting statements to and collecting payments from departing guests.
- Order Filler. Fill customers' mail and telephone orders from stored merchandise in accordance with specifications on sales slips or order forms. Duties include computing prices of items, completing order receipts, keeping records of out-going orders, and requisitioning additional materials, supplies, and equipment.
- Procurement Clerk. Compile information and records to draw up purchase orders for procurement of materials and services.
- Shipping and Receiving Clerk. Verify and keep records on incoming and outgoing shipments. Prepare items for shipment. Duties include assembling, addressing, and shipping merchandise or material; receiving, unpacking, verifying and recording incoming merchandise or material; and arranging for the transportation of products.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Dispatcher Training
Elmhurst College - Elmhurst, IL
Elmhurst College, 190 Prospect Ave, Elmhurst, IL 60126-3096. Elmhurst College is a small college located in Elmhurst, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,315 students and an admission rate of 69%. Elmhurst College has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Logistics and Materials Management.
Emergency Number Professional: Certification is a tool of a professional association to establish the benchmarks of performance that will signify a broad-based competence in the professional field.
For more information, see the National Emergency Number Association website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Chicago, Illinois
Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.
The three big industries for women in Chicago are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.
The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.
Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.