Communications Tactical Advisor

Job Family Operational Support
Job Sub Family Control Centre
Code OPS-CON-SD-Communications Tactical Advisor v1.0

Role Purpose

The Communications Tactical Advisor acts as a strategic, tactical or operational resource to be deployed at pre-planned or spontaneous events and incidents and is responsible for the provision of appropriate, valid and reasonable advice in relation to radio communications.

This role is aimed at police, fire and ambulance services, as well as responder services such as Highways Agency and defence organisations.

This role is suitable for those working in a control room environment where they may be called upon to give spontaneous advice, or those from planning departments who will be involved with the pre-planning of events. This could include other roles where spontaneous and/or pre-planned advice is required.

Key Accountabilities

  • Provide advice, guidance and information on the effectiveness and limitations of various operational communication options in order to support commanders’ aims and objectives.
  • Provide commanders and control room operators with timely, accurate and relevant advice when radio communications problems arise during live incidents in order to promptly provide alternative and mitigating options.
  • Provide advice for fall-back or contingency arrangements at the site of an event or incident in order to sustain effective radio communications in the event of communication issues.
  • Evaluate the provisions in place for the use of operational communications, including any restrictions that may be in place or likely to arise, in order to support command decision making and the effective policing of pre-planned and spontaneous events and incidents.
  • Support the development of robust joint operating rules and working practices for operational communications use in order to contribute to organisational learning.
  • Provide communications input into reviews of current major incident and contingency plans in order to achieve strategic, tactical and operational objectives.
  • Maintain full knowledge of all relevant national guidance and policies surrounding operational communications in order to provide advice that is lawful and proportionate to the situation.
  • Maintain records of all advice provided and the subsequent decisions made and actions taken to ensure there is an accurate audit trail.
  • Demonstrate and champion interoperability by working with relevant colleagues, stakeholders and partners in order to better understand differing organisational approaches to operational communications and factor them into the development of communication plans for pre-planned and spontaneous events and incidents.


All roles are expected to know, understand and act within the ethics and values of the Police Service.

The Competency and Values Framework (CVF) has six competencies that are clustered into three groups. Under each competency are three levels that show what behaviours will look like in practice.

It is suggested that this role should be operating or working towards the following levels of the CVF:

Resolute, compassionate and committed

Inclusive, enabling and visionary leadership

Intelligent, creative and informed policing

Education, Qualifications, Skills and Experience

Prior education and experience:

  • Prior experience of using the Airwave network as an end user or from an operational planning perspective.
  • Must have successfully completed the Communication Tactical Advisor course.


  • Able to set out logical arguments clearly, adapting language, form and message to meet the needs of different people/audiences.
  • Able to appropriately prioritise and plan own work and use resources effectively and efficiently.
  • Able to identify cause and effect and develop a course of action designed to target root causes and mitigate risks.
  • Able to identify potential opportunities to enhance efficiency and/or effectiveness within own area of work.
  • Able to work effectively in a team to achieve shared objectives, demonstrating awareness of individual differences and providing support as required.
  • Able to review own performance objectively and to take steps to maintain and enhance competence and professional standards appropriate to the role.
  • Able to proactively develop effective working relationships with peers, senior managers, partners and other stakeholders.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

  • Undertake Airwave update day refresher training every 12 months.
  • Maintain an up to date understanding of regulations and guidance, best practice and any local policy applicable to the operational service context, and the role of Communications Tactical Advisor.
  • Maintain and update key knowledge, understanding and skills relating to policy and practice across all functional areas of operational work.
  • Maintain knowledge and understanding of new approaches identified by evidence based service research and problem solving, test and synthesise these into working practice, championing innovation and changes to practice.
  • Regularly share best practice with colleagues e.g. contribute to relevant communities or deliver informal briefings.
  • Understand and develop knowledge of other roles within service e.g. work alongside other colleagues in another department to further operational knowledge of other roles.

Professional Registration/Licenses

  • Must complete refresher every 12 months and provide a portfolio of evidence to maintain qualification for the role.

Links to other Profiles

  • Contact Centre Officer
  • Dispatch Controller
  • Control Room Supervisor
Leave Feedback