Getting your forklift license is the easy part, and starting your new career is exciting. It is the process in-between that makes most people cringe. If your current employer is having you get certified, so you can be promoted to a forklift operator then you have it made and get to skip all the less fun steps. Otherwise, like most other careers, you are going to need a resume. If you have never written a resume before then just the thought of the process is probably intimidating. Even if you have created one for a different line of work, you need a completely new one to apply for forklift positions.
Double check your contact information. You would not believe how many people skim over this area while editing and don’t realize something is incorrect. Ideally, you will supply an email address. If you have been using the same “questionable” email address since your freshman year in high school, you will want to get a new one to use for professional purposes.
The objective is one of the most important components of a forklift resume yet it is often an element that is neglected. This brief statement is an introduction and tells the potential employer what job you are interested in.
Your objective does not need to be more than a couple sentences. Three is the maximum number of sentences you should have here. Review the job description. Take notes of duties listed and make a note of a specific skill you have that meets the description. For example, you may have experience with a specific attachment. If you don’t have any special qualifications to add here, use hot words like “certified” or “hard worker.” “Self-motivated” is always a good one, too.
There are a variety of headings you can use for the skills area. A few include:
• Qualifications Summary
• Summary of Skills
• Summary of Qualifications
• Skills and Awards
• Accomplishments and Skills
• Certifications and Skills
In this section, you want to provide a list of bullets, highlighting your skills, accomplishments, awards, and certifications. Your forklift certification should be listed here along with any industry-specific knowledge bases you have. A few examples include:
• Capable of prolonged periods of physical activity
• Ability to meet deadlines
• Fast problem solver
• Excellent writing and communication skills
• Experience picking orders according to the pick sheet
• Proficient in operating pallet jacks (and any other relevant machinery)
You are usually going to list your most recent experience first. However, if you were a forklift operator years ago, went into management, and now want to get back into an operator position again, you want to create a “Relevant Experience” heading first. List relevant jobs, and then add an “Additional Experience” heading where you can list your most recent, but potentially non-related position.
Under each experience heading, use bullets to describe your responsibilities. If you don’t have any job experience yet, use this opportunity to list internships or volunteer experience.
List your high school diploma or GED. You can put your certification course or any other special training you have had here, as well.
It is not necessary to list references right on the resume. Add a headline that says, “References Available Upon Request.” Have a typed list completed to provide at an interview, if requested.