What does a Material Handler do?

Material handlers move products in warehouses and manufacturing facilities, either manually or using equipment such as trucks or forklifts. Their responsibilities may include pulling inventory and moving stock and other materials to fulfill orders, and unloading product deliveries by pulling them off of trucks and putting them on shelves.

There are no specific education requirements, but many employers prefer a high school degree or equivalent. In some positions, material handlers need a certificate to operate a forklift or other equipment. Material handlers need to have stamina and strength since they are typically on their feet for long periods of time and often need to lift heavy products.

What responsibilities are common for Material Handler jobs?
  • Load and unload incoming and outgoing materials and products
  • Move materials to and from loading docks, delivery trucks, storage areas, and manufacturing areas
  • Identify and label materials, and record their locations in the warehouse/on the shelves to maintain inventory
  • Prepare finished products for shipment by identifying their location, then pulling, packing, and loading them
  • Operate trucks, forklifts, cranes, and other equipment to move freight
  • Perform and report cycle counts
  • Comply with all warehouse safety rules and guidelines
What are the typical qualifications for Material Handler jobs?
  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • 1-5 years of experience working in a warehouse setting or in logistics; experience in operating material handling equipment preferred
  • Certification to ride forklift truck preferred
  • Must be able to work well in a team
  • Ability to read.write and to follow instructions, and work independently with little guidance
  • Ability to stand or walk for extended periods of time; ability to bend and to lift heavy materials
  • Ability to operate computers and relevant warehouse management computer software
  • Willingness to work flexible hours, including overtime and weekends
EducationBachelor's Degree
Work/Life Balance
3.1 ★
Total Pay--
Career Opportunity
3.1 ★
Avg. Experience8+ years

How much does a Material Handler make?

Confident
$51,858 /yr
Total Pay
$35,040
 /yr

Base Pay

+
$16,817
 /yr

Additional Pay

$51,858

 / yr
$28K$315K
Most Likely Range
Possible Range
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Material Handler Career Path

Learn how to become a Material Handler, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

L2
Material Handler
$51,858/yr
L3
L2

Average Years of Experience

0 - 1
26%
2 - 4
23%
5 - 7
0%
8+
51%
Not including years spent in education and/or training
See Career Path

Material Handler Insights

Read what Material Handler professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Ryder Intergrated Logistics
Material Handler
Jun 19, 2020

“Not many areas for career development and sometimes cross training allows employees to perform any tasks”

Lee HealthLee Health
Material Handler
Sep 9, 2021

“It was fun and fairly easy; i would often finish quick with my work and my boss wouldn't be a pain about it.”

Scot ForgeScot Forge
Material Handler
Sep 24, 2020

“Paid weekly and monthly bonuses based on company preformance.”

O'Reilly Auto PartsO'Reilly Auto Parts
Material Handler
Nov 19, 2020

“Great flexible hours and pay.”

PAL Environmental ServicesPAL Environmental Services
Asbestos Handler
Sep 1, 2020

“It's one of the best compenies were one can learn and grow ethically and professional.”

Kysor WarrenKysor Warren
Material Handler
Nov 2, 2021

“Been here six months and have been promised a raise and to get hired on and got neither.”

CTDICTDI
Material Handler
Mar 26, 2022

“I was praised for my hard work and ability to learn and cross train easily.”

Valiant Artificial Lift SolutionsValiant Artificial Lift Solutions
Material Handler
Apr 22, 2021

“Dead end job felt like I couldn't move up”

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Material Handler Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the roles and responsibilities of a Material Handler

When working as a Material Handler, the most common skills you will need to perform your job and for career success are Load Unload, English Language, Computer Literacy, Attention To Detail, and Written Communication.

The most similar professions to Material Handler are:
  • Laborer
  • Packer
  • Forklift Operator
  • Warehouse Worker

The most common qualifications to become a Material Handler include a minimum of a Bachelor's Degree and an average of 0 - 1 years of experience not including years spent in education and/or training.

Related Careers

Laborer
$51,924
38% skills overlap
Packer
$45,827
50% skills overlap
Forklift Operator
$56,214
50% skills overlap
Warehouse Worker
$50,079
63% skills overlap

Material Handler Jobs