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Material Handlers

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NOC:7452
Occupation:Material Handlers
Category:Trades and Transportation

About the job

Nature of work:

Materials handlers handle, move, load and unload materials by hand or using a variety of material handling equipment. They are employed by transportation, storage and moving companies, and by a variety of manufacturing and processing companies and retail and wholesale warehouses.

Job duties:
Material handlers (manual) perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Load, unload and move products and materials by hand or using basic material handling equipment.
  • Move household appliances and furniture onto and off moving trucks or vans.
  • Perform other material handling activities such as counting, weighing, sorting, packing and unpacking.
Material handlers (equipment operators) perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Operate winches and other loading devices to load and unload materials onto and off trucks, railway cars and loading docks of warehouses and industrial establishments.
  • Operate industrial trucks, tractors, loaders and other equipment to transport materials to and from transportation vehicles and loading docks and to store and retrieve materials in warehouses.
  • Connect hoses or pipes and operate equipment to load and unload liquid petroleum, chemical or other products into or from tank cars, tank trucks or storage tanks.
  • Operate equipment to dump materials such as coal, ore and grain into or to remove materials from railway cars, trucks or other vehicles.
  • Operate conveyors and equipment to transfer grain or other materials from transportation vehicles to elevators, bins or other storage areas.
  • May perform other activities, such as opening containers and crates, filling warehouse orders, assisting in taking inventory and weighing and checking materials.
Sample job titles:
  • forklift operator
  • freight handler (except air transport)
  • furniture mover
  • lumber handler - building supplies
  • material handler - manufacturing and warehousing
  • railway car loader
  • truck loader
  • warehouse worker - material handling
  • warehouseperson
Skills:

To work in these jobs, you should have good health, physical stamina, and strength for material handlers who work with heavy materials. Agility, coordination, and a mechanical aptitude would be helpful. You must be able to take direction and carry out instructions given by a supervisor.

Job requirements:
  • Some secondary school education may be required.
Other considerations:

None

Labour Market Information

Work Prospects:Fair

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “average”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is comparable to the average for all occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a fairly large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities occur fairly regularly. The number employed in this occupation is expected to decline moderately over the next few years, which will likely limit the number of new opportunities available. With a large percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to be a key contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Material Handlers most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs may either be permanent or temporary positions, as both are common.

The median employment income for 51% of Material Handlers who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $38,904. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

OccupationEstimated employment in 2018Estimated change in employment between 2017 and 2019Estimated openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019Estimated rate of unemployment in 2018 Estimated hourly earnings in 2015 (learn more)Estimated annual earnings in 2015
Material Handlers3,485decline160Moderate
Minimum: $11.00
Median: $14.50
Maximum: $25.00
Minimum: $5,103
Median: $27,417
Maximum: $53,776
Occupations in Trades and Transportation57,925Decline slightly3,400High
Minimum: $13.00
Median: $20.35
Maximum: $34.00
Minimum: $7,580
Median: $37,269
Maximum: $79,787
Material HandlersCompared to: Occupations in Trades and Transportation
Percent employed full-time80%89%
Percent self-employed3%13%
Where will I likely work?
Area of EmploymentMaterial HandlersCompared to: All NS Occupations
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Southern10%x12%$30,581
Northern22%x16%$33,660
Cape Breton8%x13%$32,974
Halifax43%x47%$41,209
Annapolis Valley16%x13%$32,958
What are the workers like?
AgeMaterial HandlersCompared to: All Trades and Transportation
% Employed% Employed
15-2424%x
25-3418%13%
35-4415%33%
45-5420%34%
55-6419%19%
65+4%x
Median Age3947
GenderMaterial HandlersCompared to: Occupations in Trades and Transportation
% Employed% Employed
Female10%5%
Male90%95%
EducationMaterial HandlersCompared to: All Trades and Transportation
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Less than high school26.6%$46,66118.2%$25,753
High school47.8%$41,04025.5%$28,089
Trades certificate8.2%$59,43629.4%$40,890
College certificate or diploma13.0%$51,83822.6%$39,023
University certificate or diploma0.7%x1.0%$35,969
Bachelor's degree3.3%x2.7%$36,972
University advanced certificate or diplomaxx0.2%$41,705
Master's degreexx0.3%x
Doctorate0.2%x0.0%$36,029
Medicine, dentistry, veterinary, optometryxx0.0%$3,714
Total100%100%
Wage Disclaimer

Hourly earnings data are from the Labour Force Survey by Statistics Canada. Data are not available for all occupations. Hourly earnings are calculated based on usual hours worked per week. This is how an annual salary, for instance, gets converted to an hourly rate. The data include full and part-time workers along with new and experienced workers. Self-employed workers are excluded.

Annual employment income data reported in the Work Prospects section, are from the 2011 National Household Survey by Statistics Canada. Much of the data (around 70%) came directly from tax records. The data relates to the year 2010 and includes total wages and salaries and net income from self-employment.

Sources

Employment Requirements & Contacts

Regulations:
No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile
No contacts were found under this occupation profile

Training Paths & Education

Program Name:Adult high school/secondary diploma programs
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the high school level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that defines the prescribed requirements, specified by the appropriate jurisdiction, for the completion of and graduation from a secondary school program of academic subject matter offered for adult learners outside of the regular secondary school program. This does not include adult compensatory education programs resulting in completion of a high school equivalency certificate or diploma.
See all institutions providing this program+
Universite Sainte-Anne
Siège Social: 1695, Route 1
Pointe-de-l'Église, NS B0W 1M0
(902) 769-2114
Blanche.Theriault@usainteanne.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Annapolis Valley Campus
50 Elliott Road
Lawrencetown, NS B0S 1M0
(902) 825-3491
avc.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Cumberland Campus
PO Box 550, 1 Main Street
Springhill, NS B0M 1X0
(902) 597-3737
cumberland.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Akerley Campus
21 Woodlawn Road
Dartmouth, NS B2W 2R7
(902) 491-4900
akerley.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Burridge Campus
372 Pleasant Street
Yarmouth, NS B5A 2L2
(902) 742-3501
burridge.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Kingstec Campus
236 Belcher Street
Kentville, NS B4N 0A6
(902) 678-7341
kingstec.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Lunenburg Campus
75 High Street
Bridgewater, NS B4V 1V8
(902) 543-4608
lunenburg.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Institute of Technology Campus
5685 Leeds Street
Halifax, NS B3K 2T3
(902) 491-6722
it.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Pictou Campus & School of Fisheries
PO Box 820, 39 Acadia Avenue
Stellarton, NS B0K 1S0
(902) 752-2002
pictou.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Shelburne Campus
PO Box 760, 1575 Lake Road
Shelburne, NS B0T 1W0
(902) 875-8640
shelburne.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Strait Area Campus & Nautical Institute
226 Reeves Street
Port Hawkesbury, NS B9A 2A2
(902) 625-2380
strait.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Marconi Campus
PO Box 1042, 1240 Grand Lake Road
Sydney, NS B1P 6J7
(902) 563-2450
marconi.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Truro Campus
36 Arthur Street
Truro, NS B2N 1X5
(902) 893-5385
truro.info@nscc.ca
Program Name:Ground transportation - Other
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the trades/college level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program not listed above that relates to Ground Transportation.
See all institutions providing this program+
McKenzie College
74 Townsend Street
Sydney, NS B1P 5C8
(902) 562-8549
registrar@mckenziecollege.com
Commercial Safety College
Highway #2, Masstown PO Box 848
Truro, NS B2N 5G6
(902) 662-2190
csc@safetycollege.ca
Additional resources:

There are no additional resources for this occupation.