If you have skills in whipping up coffee beverages and making customers smile, Grapevine’s police department wants to hire you.
Not to make coffee for the cops. To answer 911 calls.
Grapevine police said in a LinkedIn post they shared on Twitter Thursday that baristas’ skills in multi-tasking “make them excellent first responders.”
Many police agencies in the region have seen an increased need for 911 call operators. In Fort Worth, 911 operators for the fire department are helping take some calls for police dispatchers. Officers with Dallas police are taking shifts answering calls on their days off for overtime pay, the Dallas Morning News reported.
And it’s not just DFW police agencies that are suffering from the shortage. Austin police are facing the same problems, Austin NBC affiliate KXAN reported.
Grapevine police think they’ve found the solution in baristas.
The department points to Kaitie Campbell, a 911 operator in the city who spent four years working at Starbucks working to meet the company’s goal of “world class customer service,” she said in the LinkedIn post.
She said her experience working in a coffee shop prepared her well for a 911 call center. She had to multi-task, appropriately handle positive and negative interactions with customers and learn to see each customer as a person and “not just a number.”
The job also taught her problem-solving and how to use the short interactions she had with customers to leave a good impression. Since 911 operators usually have about two minutes with callers, that’s a vital skill to have, the department said in the LinkedIn post.
Grapevine police said all of that is necessary for a 911 call operator.
The department is offering $19.67 to $27.54 an hour for full time emergency dispatchers.
“The payoff is making a difference in people’s lives, and working with a team of people who care,” the department said in the LinkedIn post. “First responders are a family, and once you’re part of that family, you find the joy and rewards are unmatched anywhere else.”
Grapevine police did not say how many openings its has open. Apply at grapevinepd.org/1403/recruiting.