Receiving Clerk Job Description

The primary function of a Receiving Clerk is to unload, record and process shipments sent to the warehouse in which they work. Receiving Clerks are in charge of receiving shipments, sorting items within the shipment into the appropriate storage areas, recording the number of items in each shipment and reporting that number to a manager.

Receiving Clerks can be employed by any company that uses a warehouse to receive goods. These kinds of companies can include retailers, B2B suppliers, wholesalers and more. Receiving Clerks work in a warehouse environment, and are required to constantly use their physical strength and stamina to complete tasks. In addition to the physical aspect of their work, Receiving Clerks may also be required to communicate with vendors, record inventory levels on an ongoing basis and purchase supplies.


Receiving Clerk Duties and Responsibilities

In order to ensure that all shipments are received and processed in a timely manner, Receiving Clerks perform a variety of tasks. We analyzed several online job listings to identify the following core duties and responsibilities.

Receive Shipments

Whenever a new shipment of goods, supplies or merchandise arrives at their warehouse, Receiving Clerks need to be their to receive and process the shipment. This commonly involves the lifting of heavy boxes or packages.

Organize Inventory

Once a shipment has been received, it’s the Receiving Clerk’s job to make sure that every item included in the shipment is organized and stored in its proper place. Depending on the size of their warehouse, this may involve delegating tasks to other warehouse employees.

Communicate with Vendors

If there are missing items in a shipment, or if any other issue arises, Receiving Clerks will often need to contact the vendor directly in effort to work things out. This can include calling, emailing or faxing.

Prepare Shipments

Although it might seem a bit counter intuitive, Receiving Clerks are often responsible for assembling and loading outgoing shipments.

Keep Records

To ensure the duplicate orders, missing items and other discrepancies are not missed, Receiving Clerks must keep detailed records of each shipment received. This can be accomplished either through a software program or through a more old-fashioned method, such as a pen and paper.


Receiving Clerk Skills

Successful Receiving Clerks and strong and energetic folks who have no trouble getting their hands dirty. They are just as skilled at performing physical labor as they are at keeping detailed records, and they have a knack for understanding logistics. In addition to these general personality traits, employers are looking for Receiving Clerks with the following skills and qualifications:

Physical stamina – Without physical stamina, Receiving Clerks will simply not be able to perform their job. This includes hours of walking, standing and lifting each day.

Attention to detail – Because they are charged with keeping records of each shipment received, Receiving Clerks need to have a high level of attention to detail. This will enable them to document the contents of each shipment in its entirety.

Communication skills – Receiving Clerks are typically required to communicate with vendors and suppliers. Thus, they must have excellent written and verbal communication skills, and may also benefit from conflict resolution skills.

Basic financial skills – In some cases, Receiving Clerks will need to keep track of the ordering of supplies. For this reason, they must be able to understand and apply basic principles of financing and accounting.

Organizational skills – Since they are responsible and reorganizing the items of a shipment after they’ve been received, it’s important that Receiving Clerks possess excellent organizational skills.


Receiving Clerk Salary

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Shipping, Receiving and Traffic Clerks (which includes Receiving Clerks) make an average annual salary of $31,180 per year. The lowest paid earn $21,010 per year, while the highest paid earn $48,760 per year. Those in the states of the District of Columbia, Alaska and Washington enjoy the highest median annual salary in the country, earning $45,670, $37,730 and $36,100 per year respectively.


Receiving Clerk Tools of the Trade

To accomplish their daily tasks, Receiving Clerks use a variety of tools. If you want to become a Receiving Clerk, make sure that you have at least a basic understanding of the following tools.

Product scanners – In order to enter each item of a shipment into their warehouse’s system, Receiving Clerks will likely need to use some sort of product scanner to read barcodes.

Heavy machinery – Depending on the type of shipments received, Receiving Clerks may need to use heavy machinery such as forklifts to move items through the warehouse.

Telecommunications equipment – In order to contact vendors and communicate with their supervisors, Receiving Clerks must be comfortable using telephones, walkie-talkies, intercoms and other types of telecommunications equipment.

Inventory software – Depending on the scope of their work, Receiving Clerks may need to know how to operate inventory management software.


Additional Receiving Clerk Resources

We put together the following list of resources to help you continue exploring your career as a Receiving Clerk.

Warehouse and Distribution Management – With more than 60,000 members, this LinkedIn group is the perfect place to go if you want to network with Receiving Clerks as well as other warehouse and distribution professionals.

Supply Chain Minded – Use this group to network with more than 50,000 other supply chain and warehousing professionals.

Warehousing Education and Research Council – Focused on providing learning opportunities to its members, the WERC provides conferences, online learning, webinars, a research library and more.

International Warehouse Logistics Association – From an annual convention and expo to news articles and newsletters, this 125-year-old professional association has it all.


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