What does a Forklift Operator do?
Forklift Operators are employed by manufacturing and shipping companies at factories, construction sites, warehouses and other storage spaces to safely and efficiently transport heavy cargo based on necessary workflows. Forklift Operators track inventory, inspect goods before and after shipping to identify imperfections or damage, lift heavy materials onto pallets and secure them with cord or packaging, stack merchandise and count inventory in-stock to fill orders. Forklift Operators can operate different types of lifting machinery such as pallet jacks, order pickers, side loaders, reach fork trucks and counterbalance forklifts depending on the tasks they need to complete and a warehouse’s setup.
Forklift Operator skills and qualifications
A successful Forklift Operator will have the necessary skills and qualifications that prepare them for the job. This includes any training certifications you may require for the position, as well as more specific skills they might need. If there are any software programs they need to be familiar with, this is where you list them. Examples of skills and qualifications a forklift operator may need are:
- Education requirements (i.e. high school diploma, GED, etc.)
- Physical requirements
- Safety training certifications
- Years of experience in the field they’re applying for
- Ability to operate powered industrial machinery
- They must be over the age of 18
Forklift Operator salary expectations
A Forklift Operator makes an average of $14.39 per hour. Pay rate may depend on level of education, experience and geographical location.
Forklift Operator education and training requirements
Most employers require Forklift Operators to have their high school diploma or GED. Depending on what items the operator might be moving, the operator may need specialized certifications, especially when they’re transporting chemicals and dangerous items. The operator may also need to complete a training course on how to use the machines they’ll be using, and then pass a test of their knowledge. Often, these courses and tests are provided by the employers who hire them. Without proper training, a forklift operator is at risk of creating a dangerous environment for other employees and to themselves.
Forklift Operator experience requirements
Many employers require forklift operators to have experiences working in a similar environment to the one they’re applying to. Their applicants must have experience working in a warehouse, construction site, in the outdoors—anywhere that might prepare them for the environment a prospective employer might put them in. Some employers also require actual forklift operating experience, especially those who work with sensitive materials such as chemicals. No matter what the forklift operator is moving, they must be certified to use the machine. The level of experience they are required to have depends on the employer’s needs.
Job description samples for similar positions
Are you looking for another job description sample? If you’re trying to find something similar, here are some options: