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  • Dispatch Schedules

    I know, I know... I've used the SEARCH feature but can't find what I'm after.

    DISPTACHERS:
    How can you make a 15-20 person dispatch center run 12 hour shifts while maintaining at least 3 persons 24/7.

    I've been trying to make it work to increase staffing without having to hire additional personnel and getting people an additional day off.

    I can make the 3x12 work but where do we come up with the extra 4 hours?

    Is there any rule out there that says we can work 36 and still be "full-time" benefitted employees?

    My other idea making up that 4 hours is every 3 weeks work a 4th day.

    Anyone make this work and be efficient?

    Thanks!
    *Mark
    FTM-PTB-RFB-EGH

  • #2
    Depending on how your paid weekly bi weekly etc you could look into doing what some police departments do. 3-12 hour shifts then off 2 days then 2 12 hour shifts off 3 days. You wind up haveing to pay some in overtime but not very much.
    IACOJ
    FTM-PTB

    Comment


    • #3
      maybe tight.....but...

      Here we run 3 days on, 3 off, next week 4 days on 4 days off. Every dispatcher gets 4 hours of OT every pay period.

      12 hour shifts and we run with 20-25 dispatchers depending on turn over.
      Last edited by SSTONER; 09-15-2006, 04:51 AM.
      Warm Regards,
      Shawn Stoner
      EMT-B

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by mark440
        I know, I know... I've used the SEARCH feature but can't find what I'm after.

        My other idea making up that 4 hours is every 3 weeks work a 4th day.

        Anyone make this work and be efficient?

        Thanks!
        *Mark
        Your math is off. In order to keep an 80-hour pay period (2 weeks), you'd have to have something like this:
        Week 1: 3x12 on, 4 off (36 hrs)
        Week 2 3x12 & 1x8 on, 3 off (44 hrs)

        SO runs dispatch for us, their setup is like this:
        Day shift: 5A-5P M-W, 8hr day 2nd Sun of pay period
        Night shift: 5A-5P Thu-Sat, 8 hr day 1st Sun of pay period
        Day relief: 5P-5A M-W, 8 hr 1st Sun of pay period
        Night relief: 5P-5A Thu-Sat, 8 hr 2nd Sun of pay period

        There are 4 dispatchers per shift: one calltaker, one SO radio, one Fire radio (doubles as calltaker and makes calls to outside agencies), and one supervisor (also fills in as calltaker and covers breaks for other consoles).

        On the 8-hr day, shifts are split, usually first two on from 5A-1P, another two from 9A-5P. Nights works same way, cept switch the As & Ps around.

        That's the way we do it, but we're a pretty rural county...so what works here may (probably *LOL*) won't work for you.
        My opinions might coincide with someone of importance's POV... I wouldn't know, since I never bothered to ask. My policy is: "Don't ask, don't care."

        IACOJ--West Coast PITA

        Comment


        • #5
          The dispatchers in our Public Safety Comm Center (they dispatch both PD and FD) work 8 hour shifts. There are also part time dispatchers that fill in any holes inthe schedule as required.
          ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
          Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by mark440
            I know, I know... I've used the SEARCH feature but can't find what I'm after.

            DISPTACHERS:
            How can you make a 15-20 person dispatch center run 12 hour shifts while maintaining at least 3 persons 24/7.

            I've been trying to make it work to increase staffing without having to hire additional personnel and getting people an additional day off.

            I can make the 3x12 work but where do we come up with the extra 4 hours?

            Is there any rule out there that says we can work 36 and still be "full-time" benefitted employees?

            My other idea making up that 4 hours is every 3 weeks work a 4th day.

            Anyone make this work and be efficient?

            Thanks!
            *Mark
            Make the 4 hours OT. You can't get something for nothing. As long as it is in the contract you can make any number of hours a full time work week. I know an electrians union back in the 60s-70s had just a contract with a 36 hour work week. They still worked 40+ but those 37,38,39 &40 hours were on OT.

            FTM-PTB

            PS- It's a little hard to understand how many groups you need to fill. 15-20 makes a differencem is it 16, 18? and if it is possible to have more than 3 on duty. How many people should be comming in for a tour?

            PPS-I just saw Stoners reply and I guess they already do what I was thinking.
            Last edited by FFFRED; 09-15-2006, 08:30 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              Mark- Where have you been?

              Anyways- Out in CA, some places work 8 and 12 hour shifts. (LA Co, Sac Metro)

              But some centers work the 24 hour Firefighter schedule of 3/4 kelly and 48x96 aka 2x4.
              (Orange Co, Ventura Co, Contra Costa)

              If you need more details, I can put you intouch with someone.....Bou

              Comment


              • #8
                I think Federal law considers "full time" 32 hours per week, of course union negotiations can make what ever the union / management will go for, 20 hours a week can be full time if that is what the contract says.

                I get 32 because years ago I worked for a cheap mom & pop ambulance company and we tended to work 3 weeks with 30-50 hours, then a week with no hours so they could avoid paying benefits, at the time they said if we worked 32 hours or more for 1 month Dept or Labor said they had to pay us benefits.

                I know of a few ambulance companies that work the 12 hour 3 on / 4 off, 4 on / 3 off but I think it does require a little built in overtime, seems like a nice schedule to work.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Tann3100 - Bi-Weekly, our week starts on Saturdays.
                  SStoner - I'm trying to get this done without increasing any overtime. Right now overtime is tight... not much handed out.
                  the1141man - You're correct, my math is off. Your set up sounds much similar to ours here. I like the schedule, might have to put some work into that and customize it.
                  CaptGonzo - We used to work 8's about 5 years ago and we finally talked the City and management into going with 10 hour shifts. Now we'd like to get to 12's...
                  FFFred - We are allotted 20 dispatchers by the City. Right now we have 15. So it could change next week or next year when we hire more to full staff. Our minimum is 3. More is obiviously better.
                  Bou - I've been keeping low profile. Working at getting into Medic school. I got my acceptance letter Thursday by the way! Now I'll be visible for a couple months and then only visible in the classroom and on the road after January!!! I like the 24 hour dispatch shift. I'd work 24 and suffer my azz for that, but the City will not go for that. How do those departments work that with the dispatchers? Do they get rest periods like the firefighters do. Even if the City won't go for that, I'm still interested in how they make that schedule work.
                  NonSurfinCaFF - I wish we had the chance for bargaining or contracts. Sadly we don't have any unions or bargaining. I attempted a union creation but found no support for it other than myself. No one has ever been a member of one besides myself. And Utah isn't a big union recognizing state.

                  Still kicking,
                  *Mark
                  FTM-PTB-RFB-EGH

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Twenty-four hour 911 centers, which there are few of, get sleep periods. Staying awake constantly would be a field unit/citizen safety nightmare.
                    Someone once told me that time is a predator that stalks us all our lives. But maybe time is also a companion who goes with us on our journey, and reminds us to cherish the moments of our lives because they will never come again.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Dispatch Schedules ...

                      Our dispatch office overworks 8 fulltime operators. And I say over worked because I am one of those 8. We run 12 hour shifts. Our pay period runs Sunday to Saturday. So we have a 2 week schedule. Everyone works 4 hours and Tuesday and part time operators fill in the gaps on that day. So Week 1 I work Sunday, 4 hrs Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday (40 hrs). Week 2 I work Monday, 4 hrs Tuesday, Friday and Saturday (40 hrs). Then it starts over. With this we get a 3 day weekend every other weekend. The Tuesdays can be a pain in the *** though. Hard to plan anything on that day. Hope this helps!!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        we have an interesting schedule. our dispatchers (EMS only) work the same schedules as our field personnel, as well as have the same supervisors. 12 hours shifts (either day or night shift, but not alternating) 2 on 2 off, with an additional day off (we call it a float day) every two weeks. keeps us at 80 hours every two weeks.
                        If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

                        FF/EMT/DBP

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          we are having a terrible time trying to convince our administration to keep us on 12 hour shifts they are totally convinced that 8 hours is the way to go. We have often told them that 8's will not no one will cover on thier days off call outs will be more often than 10's or 12's. Any ideas?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            We work 12 hours shifts with set days. My rotation is, every Wed., Thurs., Fri., and every other Sat. I always work 8a to 8p. So its, work 3 days off 4, work 4 off 3. Total of 84 hours per pay.
                            IACOJ - Senior Jake

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Talk to 77 or weruj, they both dispatch for a local county ems agency.
                              ------------------------------------
                              These opinions are mine and do not reflect the opinions of any organizations I am affiliated with.
                              ------------------------------------

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