Shipping and Receiving Clerk: Career Info and Requirements for Becoming a Shipping and Receiving Clerk
Shipping and Receiving Clerks complete tasks that help a warehouse run smoothly. In addition to tracking inventory and keeping records, they may also package items, inspect merchandise and complete other related duties.The job of a Shipping and Receiving Clerk is an entry-level position, so an applicant only needs a high school diploma or equivalent. A Clerk in a Shipping and Receiving department will work in a warehouse environment and will gain experience in inventory, logistics and distribution.
Shipping and Receiving Clerk Career Definition
Shipping and Receiving Clerks typically work in a warehouse environment and are responsible for tracking inventory levels, handling all aspects of shipping and receiving and keeping accurate records. On the shipping side, they package items, print labels, weigh packages and determine appropriate postage. As Receiving Clerks, they are responsible for comparing bills of lading against actual merchandise received, inspecting for damaged goods and, once approved, distributing merchandise to the correct departments. Shipping and Receiving Clerks use hand tools like box cutters and pry bars; they may also operate forklifts or similar vehicles.
How to Become a Shipping and Receiving Clerk
Required Education for a Career in Shipping and Receiving
Since the Shipping and Receiving Clerk position is entry-level, a high school diploma or GED is the only educational prerequisite. Most training for new workers is completed in-house and is provided by senior Shipping and Receiving Clerks. If a Shipping and Receiving Clerk is interested in advancing to a supervisory position, he or she may consider taking continuing education courses in warehousing and logistics, which are offered online by professional warehousing organizations (www.werc.org).
Skills Required for a Career in Shipping and Receiving
The Shipping and Receiving Clerk should be familiar with computers and have basic math skills. The individual should be organized and able to work well under pressure. He or she must be able to understand and adhere to oral and written instructions. Additionally, physical strength is a necessity since Shipping and Receiving Clerks generally lift heavy packages.
Career and Economic Outlook for Shipping and Receiving
The Shipping and Receiving sector is projected to have a four percent employment rise through 2016, which is slower than average. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated that the mean hourly rate for a Shipping, Receiving and Traffic Clerk in 2008 was $14.03. Warehousing and storage facilities and courier services account for over 66,000 jobs and are two of the highest employing subsectors in the industry. Postal service Shipping, Receiving and Traffic Clerks earn the most per hour, with a mean wage of $27.50 (www.bls.gov).
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