What does a Material Handler do?
Material Handlers work within a company’s warehouse, moving, handling and storing different materials. They track the stock within the warehouse, record orders and store the company’s merchandise. Material Handlers are regularly on their feet loading and unloading inventory, supplies and other packages from various locations, like storage and production areas, delivery trucks and loading docks.
Before loading up trucks for delivery, the Material Handlers check their files and records to make sure all of the incoming deliveries follow what’s written in their purchase orders. They’re also in charge of storing cargo in various assigned locations, using materials like pallets and cargo boards. After moving different units, they log the total number they’ve moved for the day in their production sheet.
Material Handler skills and qualifications
In order to be a successful Material Handler, a candidate should be able to work with minimal supervision, be proactive and manage other workers effectively. Some of their other essential skills include:
- Certification in forklift operation
- Knowledge of operating other warehouse machinery
- Data entry, math and computer skills
- Physically fit with the ability to lift objects weighing between 50-100 pounds
- Effective leadership and team management skills
- Attention to detail and problem-solving skills
- Excellent time management and organizational skills
- Written and verbal communication skills
Material Handler salary expectations
A Material Handler makes an average of $13.70 per hour in the United States. This pay rate may vary based on a candidate’s skills, experience and educational qualifications.
Material Handler education and training requirements
In order to work as a Material Handler in any company, candidates should have a high school diploma or equivalent GED certificate. However, some employers may also look for applicants who have earned an associate degree or certification in warehouse management through technical or vocational institutes or online learning programs. Someone with an advanced degree will not only be prepared to perform the everyday tasks of a Material Handler, but they will possess managerial expertise and knowledge of accounting, purchasing and expense analysis. This education may not be as necessary for an entry-level position, however.
Material Handler experience requirements
Most employers look for Material Handler candidates with 1-5 years of experience operating heavy equipment and working in a warehouse setting. They also prefer candidates who are physically fit and certified to drive a forklift. Experience in record keeping, data entry and stock management is also a plus. Most entry-level roles provide on-the-job training, so candidates may need less experience for these positions.
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