Wayne Alarm Systems begins CSAA level II course

Thursday, May 25, 2006

LYNN, Mass.--This week, Wayne Alarm Systems launched the Central Station Operator level II class for the full-service alarm company's dispatching staff.
The company's eight supervisors with more than one year of experience at the central will take the course first, followed by its 32 operators.
The course, available online through the Central Station Alarm Association web site, explores various modules that operators encounter daily, such as handling difficult customer situations. For example, the training provides methods for determining "what kind of customer you are dealing with and adjusting your own speech to meet a pattern that is agreeable to them," said Annie Roderick, central station manager.
There are two levels in the training program, and Roderick said the level I course is very basic. "Someone could walk off the street and take that [course] and learn a good bit about how to be a dispatcher." On the other hand, the level II course, Roderick said, is not for "someone off the street. They would run for their life. The operator needs to be in the organization for at least a year in order to be prepared to take that course. Some central station managers believe even longer," she added.
For system integrator Wayne, which monitors its own and third-party accounts, the level II course made sense.
Other modules in the course include training for specialty alarms, communication methods, and receivers and receiver formats, which "cover all the different ways signals can be communicated to the central station like VoIP, Internet monitoring, how the DSL echo can affect the signals and false alarm management," Roderick said.
Although the course has 200 questions stored into the program, each test has 40 questions. This provides variety, "so the next operator isn't getting the same questions as the one before," Roderick said. However, the course content itself is standardized. As a virtual program, operators have up to six months from the time they sign up to view their test. In order to pass the course, operators need to achieve a 70-percent passing grade, she added.
"I think once more of the operators have this knowledge under their belts, we will have some of the most professional people we have ever had," Roderick said.