Operational Communications Adviser Course


The Operational Communications Adviser Course (previously known as 'Airwave Tactical Adviser' course) replaces previous single service training on this topic. The course has been revised during 2016 and now contains the most up to date and relevant information. As is the ethos of JESIP, it will be delivered by a multi-agency training team and delivered to multi-agency audience to maximise the benefit for all attendees.

When trained, the Communications Adviser will be responsible to their operational and tactical planning teams, providing advice and best practice guidance on all aspects of the operational use of Airwave.

They will have a high level of understanding of the provisions made for the operational use of mandated and mutual aid talk groups, together with the Airwave service requirements around major incident and event planning.

For them to be effective, the Communications Advisor must be invited to participate at the very earliest stages of major event planning and importantly be invited to assist where protracted spontaneous incidents are encountered in control rooms.

Who should attend

​The course is aimed at Police, Fire and Ambulance services, as well as responder services such as Highways Agency and Defence organisations. Roles suited for this course are 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 can include other roles where spontaneous and/or preplanned advice is required.

See below for one day refresher courses for existing advisers.


To qualify selected personnel to act as communications advisors on all aspects of emergency services operational communications, to support the Operational and/or Tactical Commander in the effective management of both pre-planned events and spontaneous incidents.


On completion of the course the successful student will be able to:

◾LO1. Describe the roles and responsibilities of a Communications Advisor
◾LO2. Describe communications requirements for pre-planned and emergency situations
◾LO3. Describe the importance of operational communications and their usage
◾LO4. Develop joint operating rules and working practices within their own organisation

◾LO5. Demonstrate a thorough knowledge of all relevant national guidance and policies covering operational communications
◾LO6. Describe the importance of interoperability and the different operational communications approach in other organisations
◾LO7. Describe the operation and flexible use of Airwave
◾LO8. Demonstrate an ability to provide communications advice to Incident Commanders

 Entry requirements

None, although prior to attending this course it is advisable that you make yourself aware of the following documents:

  • JESIP Doctrine
  • There are 3 key components of this
  • Five principles of Joint Working
  • Joint Decision Model (JDM)
  • An awareness on how your organisation uses Airwave in a Tactical and Operational role. For further information on this speak to your organisations Airwave Team.

Students should familiarise themselves with Airwave handsets and vehicle sets (terminals) if they do not regularly use them, and what control room equipment is used.

Course Dates and Venues*

Start date End date Venue Places
29/01/2019 31/01/2019 Emergency Planning College, York Please email
05/02/2019 07/02/2019 Swinton, Manchester Please email
06/03/2019 08/03/2019 Eastleigh, Hampshire Please email
12/03/2019 14/03/2019 Coventry Please email
14/05/2019 16/05/2019 Carmarthen Please email
09/07/2019 11/07/2019 Emergency Planning College, York Please email
17/09/2019 19/09/2019 Venue TBC Please email
12/11/2019 14/11/2019 Venue TBC Please email

(*subject to minimum delegate numbers being met)

Course duration

​The course is 3 days in duration, running from Tuesday-Thursday.

Methods of delivery

The course is classroom based delivery, supported by delegate notes and delegate participation in problem solving scenarios.

Assessment processes / accreditation details

There is an assessment process in place with continual assessment and a knowledge check and individual competency scenario test on the final day.


​In order to successfully complete the course a delegate must complete the classroom phase and be considered suitable to give advice at the stage of forward planning and at the time of an ongoing incident. Delegates are required to show continual professional development following the course and ensure they stay up to date with all relevant doctrine, policies and procedures, nationally and locally. Delegates must attend a CPD event within 18 months of completing the course.

Additional information

​Courses cost £400 per delegate, with additional accommodation costs for delegates wishing to stay on site.

One day refresher courses

22/01/2019 Newtown, Wales
23/01/2019 Staffordshire Police HQ
13/02/2019 Portishead
20/03/2019 Manchester Police HQ
28/03/2019 New Scotland Yard, London
29/03/2019 Cambridgeshire Fire Service HQ

Cost £80 per person (subject to minimum delegate numbers being met)


Booking contact: deliveryadmin@college.pnn.police.uk

Email: deliveryadmin@college.pnn.police.uk