SDPD is still hiring amid the COVID-19 crisis. All testing processes are continuing as scheduled.


San Diego

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Police Dispatcher Application Process

Police Dispatcher and Police 911 Dispatcher applicants must apply online. To apply for 911 Emergency Dispatcher or Police Dispatcher click on the link below for the City of San Diego's Personnel Unit "Open Job Opportunities" Webpage. When the online application process is open for either position, just click on "911 Emergency Dispatcher" and/or "Police Dispatcher" and follow the instructions.City of San Diego Job Opportunities

Once City Personnel has approved the employment application, the candidate is notified by mail of the time, date, and place to report for the entry-level computerized test battery. The San Diego Police Department's computerized testing product, CritiCall, will take approximately two and one half hours to complete.

City Personnel will place the name of applicants who have passed the test on an eligibility list. Candidates on the eligibility list may be called for interviews by San Diego Fire & Life Safety Services, Public Works Dispatch in Transportation and Storm Water, as well as San Diego Police Communications Division.


Each of the departments hiring from the eligibility list conduct their own interviews for the positions they have available. Police Communications' Staff Supervisor, at the direction of the Program Manager, generally schedules interviews two to four weeks after candidates successfully complete the CritiCall test.

The interview is approximately 30 minutes, however, candidates may be asked to complete a Pre-Investigative Questionnaire (PIQ) as part of the background process. Candidates should allow two to three hours to complete the PIQ.

Candidates continuing through the process will be:

  • Scheduled for an in-depth interview with a SDPD background investigator, who contacts current and prior employers, relatives, references, and checks and verifies employment and credit history, driving record, moral character and other pertinent information.
  • Required to pass a polygraph examination as well as a fingerprint check through the FBI and Department of Justice.
  • Be required to pass a City medical examination

At the successful completion of all requirements, the SDPD Staff Supervisor at the direction of the Program Manager will contact the candidate and issue a hire date.