If you want to become a forklift operator, you will need to obtain a forklift certification before you can legally work in this position. Although it does take some work to get certified, the benefits of becoming an operator make the effort well worth it.
While the weakened economy of the last few years has made it very challenging for many people to find jobs, there are some industries that have actually managed to grow during these tough times. Manufacturing is one sector that has flourished. Not long ago, most signs pointed towards all manufacturing being done overseas. The reason is companies of all sizes didn’t think they could remain competitive if they continued to pay more for domestic manufacturing.
Even though huge amounts of manufacturing moved overseas in a fairly short period of time, it didn’t take long for companies to realize that this strategy wasn’t a silver bullet. In exchange for lowered costs, businesses across a wide range of industries had to deal with issues ranging from quality control problems to delayed shipments to increased difficulty with producing innovative products.
After the initial excitement around offshore manufacturing began wearing off and companies started crunching the numbers, many realized that when they took all of the previously discussed factors into account, they weren’t saving nearly as much as they thought. Because of this harsh dose of reality, even huge corporations like GE have started to move parts of their manufacturing back to the United States. Companies will continue to use offshore manufacturing. But instead of viewing it as some type of ultimate solution, most will use it as a supplement to their primary domestic operations.
Thanks to this learning experience for all kinds of businesses, the value of a forklift certification is quite high. Whether you’re entering the workforce for the first time or want to make a career change, becoming an operator is an option that’s definitely worth exploring.
What Does a Forklift Operator Do?
The basic requirements of this job are lifting, transporting and delivering heavy loads. Depending on the specific job, this may be done from one company to another, or simply within the property of a single company. Because there are all kinds of loads that need to be transported, there are multiple types of forklifts. Rider and warehouse forklifts are just two examples of the types of machines an operator may need to handle. After becoming certified, someone who wants to work in this profession will know how to operator scissor, boom and aerial lifts, as well as telehandlers. Additionally, not only are operators capable of moving loads on the ground, but they are able to keep whatever they’re moving secure even if they’re moving it through the air fifteen feet above the ground.
Since forklifts are needed in so many different settings, there’s really no such thing as a standard work environment. Depending on the opportunities someone’s interested in, they may find themselves working on a farm or in an industrial complex. But regardless of where their work takes place, they can count on being challenged and engaged on a daily basis.