Five Tips for Hiring a Forklift Operator

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Driving a forklift is no easy task. Maneuvering through some of the tight spaces
found in factories and warehouses can be a nightmare. Forklift operators must
have certain characteristics. When hiring a forklift driver, these are some
defining attributes:

 Forklift experience: The obvious
signature of any promising prospect is familiarity with the vehicle itself.
Forklift operation requires skill and know-how. Experience is the best indicator
in finding the right driver for the job.

Previous warehouse or
factory experience:
 Forklifts are a common breed found along the floors
of plants worldwide. In many other instances, forklifts are also used in
exterior operations to unload trucks that come in with deliveries or freighters
going out with shipping orders. Any great candidate is integrated with the flow
of factory operations and acclimated to an industrial environment. The best
drivers have prepared pallets for a forklift driver or have unpacked unloaded
pallets. Employees of this nature understand the ebb and flow of the floor and,
thus would bring this experience to the role of a forklift
driver.

Commercial driver license: A forklift is a
heavy piece of machinery. For all drivers who wish to get behind the wheel of a
heavy vehicle, they are required to apply for and maintain a commercial driver
license. Some of the best forklift drivers could be people that regularly hit
the gas on a box truck or eighteen-wheeler. What is the correlation? Commercial
drivers efficiently and safely operate large vehicles daily. Furthermore, they
are held to a high standard and commissioned to a superior level of conduct.
Additionally, they are accustomed to the cumbersome ways of heavy machinery. Any
holder of a commercial driver license is cognizant of the hazards this equipment
can bring and face. Potentially, any CDL holder can be the best candidate for a
forklift driving position.

• Committed to safety: While
you will not be able to find this information on a resume, service records could
showcase a potential operator’s commitment to safety. In reference checks,
previous employers would be excited to share the exceptional performance of the
prospective employee. With this being mentioned, safety is truly paramount when
using a forklift. The consequences of negligence or reckless engagement could
result in injury or death. A driver who is committed to safety can ensure that
accidents will be avoided at all costs. Lastly, a driver who is committed to
safety assures you that you have a responsible operator behind the wheel. The
driver will not take too many risks or gamble at the expense of the welfare of
others. In summation, an already potentially dangerous environment has one less
possible pitfall.

• Detail oriented: A great forklift
driver pays attention to detail. This is absolutely essential. This
characteristic provides safety to the team and can also expedite assignments. A
good forklift driver knows how much stock he needs and how long it will take him
to get it where it needs to be. These assessments come from an individual who
refines his focus on the smallest of details.

So what does it take to be
a good forklift driver? Experience is always a plus. Having the credentials and
background is even more of a benefit. However, any individual that is committed
to safety and is detail oriented could also be a great candidate. Ultimately, it
boils down to dedicating one’s self to mastering the craft. This of course,
comes from learning as much as doing. With these attributes and attitudes, any
organization can hire the perfect forklift operator.

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