1. Home
  2. Career Explorer
  3. Forklift Operator
  4. Skills
Content has loaded

How to become a Forklift Operator

To work as a forklift operator you must be 18 years of age or older, possess a high school diploma or equivalent and be certified as a forklift operator in accordance with the requirements outlined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Although OSHA sets the expectations, they do not certify individuals themselves. Employers, training programs or online organizations can certify individuals through coursework, hands-on training hours and successful passing of an exam.

How to become: Warehouse Worker · Material Handler · Order Picker · Warehouse/Driver · Laborer
These qualifications are required: CDL · Forklift Certification · Driver's License
Is this useful?

What skills help Forklift Operators find jobs?

  • Basic math
  • Bilingual
  • Cherry picker
  • Clamp truck
  • Communication skills
  • Computer literacy
  • Computer skills
  • Customer service
  • Driving
  • English
  • Forklift
  • Freight
Is this useful?

Career progression for Forklift Operator

Education levels for Forklift Operators

Based on the requirements of Forklift Operator job openings on Indeed in the United States within the last three years.
required level of educationpercent of job openings
High school diploma or GED89.0%
Associate's degree7.0%
Bachelor's degree3.2%
Middle school education0.4%
Master's degree0.4%
Doctoral degree0.1%
Is this useful?

Expected salary by experience

Based on resume data from Indeed users who reported working as a Forklift Operator in the United States within the last three years.
Years of experienceAnnual salary in USD
0 - 4$24,700
4 - 8$26,300
8 - 12$27,200
12 - 16$27,700
16 - 20$28,000
20 - 24$28,300
Is this useful?

Common qualifications for Forklift Operators

Explore popular schools to earn these qualifications

Forklift Certification

OSHA Training University
486 reviews
Explore other and more common qualifications
  • certificationCDL A
  • certificationCDL
Is this useful?

Common questions about career advices for a Forklift Operator

What skills are needed to be a forklift operator?

The most important skills for a forklift operator to have include paying close attention to detail, a discipline to comply with safety and organizational standards, good hand-eye coordination and strong organizational skills. Possessing technical knowledge about the machines being operated and good judgment about risk and corresponding safety precautions are also important.

Was this answer helpful?

Career insights

Frequently searched careers

Registered Nurse

Police Officer

Software Engineer

Administrative Assistant

Customer Service Representative

Truck Driver

Substitute Teacher


Nursing Assistant



Dental Hygienist