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Forklift Operator

Traineeship Year 10 Preferred Minimum Age 18+

Also known as Forklift Driver.

Forklift operators drive forklifts to shift and stack bales, cartons, containers, crates and pallets of goods in areas such as timber yards and warehouses.

They may also move shipping containers on the waterfront.

Forklift operators work indoors and outdoors.

They may be required to work shifts and may have some contact with the public.


    Forklift operators may perform the following tasks:

  • lift, stack and unstack articles and materials using diesel, electric, gas or petrol powered trucks equipped with fork attachments
  • move raw materials and finished goods to processing or dispatch areas of factories
  • ensure goods are stored in the correct area of a warehouse so they may be located easily when making up orders
  • load transport vehicles, ensuring loads are evenly and securely placed
  • service and make minor adjustments to the forklift
  • keep a record of daily operations


  • enjoy practical and manual activities
  • able to judge distances
  • safety-conscious
  • good hearing and eyesight (may be corrected)
  • meet appropriate age restrictions

Interest Area



Traineeship Year 10 Preferred Minimum Age 28+

To become a forklift operator you usually have to obtain a licence to Perform High Risk Work issued by SafeWork NSW or WorkSafe ACT. To gain a licence, you will need to complete units of competency at an approved Registered Training Organisation and work under the supervision of a licensed operator. You will also need to keep an approved logbook to record competencies achieved during training.

Assessment by an independent assessor will then be required. The Perform High Risk Work Licence is issued under the National Standard for Licensing Persons Performing High Risk Work.

You can also become a forklift operator through a traineeship in Warehousing Operations.

Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10.

Additional Information

    You must be 18 years of age to be eligible to obtain a Perform High Risk Work Licence. However, training may commence at a younger age.

    Once you are employed, you may be able to develop, and have recognised, additional skills under the Transport and Logistics Training Package that will expand your career opportunities within this industry.


Forklift operators work in warehouses in the wholesale, manufacturing, freight forwarding and primary industries. Federal, state and territory government departments also employ forklift operators. Some forklift operators also perform other tasks such as stores or clerical work. Promotion to positions such as supervisor may be possible in larger firms.

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More Information - External Links

Job Outlook for Forklift Operator Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport Logistics Information and Navigation Centre Transport and Logistics Industry Skills Council WorkSafe ACT SafeWork NSW

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