Businesses that deal with merchandise often have specialized departments that track the movement of those goods in and out of the company. This is where shipping and receiving clerks work. They keep records of all stock – when it was sent from suppliers and when it arrived. They are also responsible for all outgoing shipments. Typical job duties include:
- Checking invoices and cartons of outgoing orders for accuracy
- Packaging merchandise for shipments
- Verifying incoming shipments with order forms
- Scanning packages’ bar codes
- Transferring data to the computer for inventory control
Nearly 75 percent of shipping and receiving clerks work for wholesale, retail or manufacturing firms. Many others work for the U.S. Postal Service. Most of the jobs are located in and around large cities. Duties include preparing items for shipment, assembling, addressing, stamping, and shipping merchandise or material. Shipping and receiving clerks also need to verify and maintain records on incoming and outgoing shipments.
Recommended education and training includes good reading, writing and business arithmetic skills, as well as computer knowledge. Most employers prefer high-school graduates.
Additional training may lead to a warehouse manager position. Earnings typically range between $12 and $15 per hour. (Salary data is based on information from PayScale.com and varies based on experience.)