A warehouse clerk maintains the order of a building or room normally dedicated to the storage of materials, products, equipment or tools. He is typically required to keep detailed records of the warehouse contents manually, on a desktop computer or using a handheld electronic tracking device. When a requisition for an item is received, he is normally expected to provide the item and update his records to reflect the transaction.
If the warehouse is large or the items are bulky enough to require motorized equipment to move them, a warehouse clerk’s job normally requires operating a forklift or pallet jack. He may also use a hand truck or dolly to move merchandise. Items for transport generally include incoming shipments as well as those being shipped or re-categorized. If the company has multiple warehouses or branch locations, the clerk is customarily expected to drive a truck or automobile to transport goods or paperwork as needed.
Efficiently sorting and storing items is often a major part of a warehouse clerk’s job. Depending on the nature of the business and the items stored in the warehouse, this may involve building shelves, bins or racks to organize the goods. Further sorting of stored merchandise is commonly based on product identification numbers, color, size or type. Choosing the mode of storage and how goods are classified may be at the discretion of the clerk or dictated by the warehouse manager.
The ability to read and interpret instructions typically is an important attribute for a warehouse clerk. He is regularly required to prepare shipments and orders based on his understanding of requisitions, production schedules, work orders or customer invoices. His accuracy in understanding the requests of these documents can significantly affect daily operations and customer satisfaction.
If a warehouse clerk directly interfaces with the production or manufacturing department, he is typically required to keep accurate records of all the parts necessary to assemble products. He is frequently expected to monitor inventory levels and place orders to keep items appropriately stocked. Acuity in performing this task ensures the production flow is not decelerated or interrupted.
A high school diploma or equivalent is a normal requirement for the position of warehouse clerk. Previous job experience in a warehouse or any environment where inventory control is a key element is highly preferred. Good communication and computer skills can contribute to the success of the clerk and may help him advance within the company.