Epic guide to working in a warehouse part 2

Epic guide to working in a warehouse part 2

As the end of another year looms we have been reflecting on all of the tips, tricks and advice that now adorns our warehouse blog pages.

Part one of this two part series addressed the warehouse industry in general, getting a warehouse job and budgeting and pay advice, if you missed it, you can read part 1 here. 

Once again, get comfortable and grab a cuppa as we proudly bring you part two of the most epic guide to working in a warehouse covering the topics, warehouse career development and how to survive and thrive when you are working shifts. There is a bit to get through and sometimes it can be difficult to find what you are looking for, so you can either scroll to read through all of the sections in turn or use the contents list to jump to the section you are most interested in. 

Section 1. How to survive and thrive in warehouse shift work
Section 2. Warehouse Career Development

Section 1. How to survive and thrive in warehouse shift work

Caring for your back and wrists

For most of us, time off work is a luxury we cannot afford so taking care of yourself and ensuring you are protecting your joints from overuse and strain should be your primary concern. This article provides detailed advice and tips for protecting your back and wrists.  

You can also download our handy infographic if you would prefer a quick reference guide.  

Taking care of your feet

Foot pain from standing and walking all day can turn an otherwise enjoyable job into one you would rather avoid at all costs, but there are things you can do to stop your feet hurting at work and bring that spring back into your step. 

Top Tips for selecting the right shoes
  • Always have both feet measured – many people have different sized feet. Even a small variation can affect how comfortable the shoes are.
  • Make sure there is 1cm space between the end of your longest toe and the end of the shoe.•
  • When choosing shoes consider the width and depth of the shoe, not just the length. Different manufacturers provide wider and narrower shoes, so it is best to try a few varying brands to get the right fit for you. 
  • Look at all aspects of the shoe and make sure they are all suitable: 

Top Tips for looking after tired feet

  • Stretching 
  • Ice baths
  • Massage
  • Elevation

Taking care of your hands

  • Combat Dry Skin - Cracked, split and dry hands can be avoided and relieved with the use of a good purpose-built moisturiser. 
  • Gloves - The best way to keep your hands healthy when you wear gloves is to make sure that your gloves are clean when you put them on. 
  • Washing & Drying - Wherever possible, avoid using fragranced soaps because they will dry out your hands. 

You rely on your hands to complete almost every aspect of your work and so if you don’t take care of them, they can quickly become extremely painful and can limit even the simplest day to day tasks.

Check out the full article for more information and links to some great tried and tested hand care products.  

Dealing with tiredness

  • Stress – Reduce stress with momentum
  • Tiredness – Make the most of your break
  • Negativity - Seek out the positive people

Read the detailed article here to find out more about combating tiredness, stress and negativity at work. 

Choosing the right workwear

No matter where you are working in the warehouse, from frozen to ambient and all of the areas in between, we have got you covered for affordable and durable workwear from top to toe not forgetting the all-important accessories too. Check out the full article here.

Related Content

Caring for hands and feet.  Check out our handy quick reference download for looking after tired feet and sore hands 

Avoid sore feet.

Section 2. Warehouse Career Development

Going Perm

6 ways to make sure that you are the one at the top of the permanent contract shortlist. 

1. Stick with it

How much time you have under your belt is your number one asset so stick with the job and learn as much as you can.

2. Make a great impression

Go above and beyond to show that you really do care about your job and the work that you do, pay close attention to detail and always strive to do your best.

3. Show you mean business

Work hard and strive to hit your targets. Being punctual and reliable goes a long way, management will always know who they can trust to get the job done and a reputation for hard work and reliability will stay with you throughout your career.

4. Be a team player

Be helpful to your colleagues, remember that all staff are working together to achieve the same goal. Training new starters or helping someone who may be struggling are all great traits that show an employer that you are a great person to have in the workforce.

5. Listen

Keep your ears open, make this business your business. What are the company plans? Are they hiring, are they expanding? Are they short of skilled staff? Is this your chance to get your forklift license and enjoy a pay bump?

6. Be Vocal

Talk to your supervisors, make it clear that you are willing to learn, to train, to try new things. Be open about your ambitions and where you see your career leading you.

Boost your career with upskilling.

There are 3 ways to upskill

Give Yourself a Lift 

As a warehouse operative one of the most useful and highly prized skills you can have is the ability to drive a counterbalance or reach forklift. Receive higher pay than for a standard warehouse operative role, increases your overtime opportunities and your chances of landing a sought-after position with a new employer if you choose to move onto other opportunities.

Computer Skills 

Being able to use programs such as Microsoft Excel for spreadsheets, Word for documents and Powerpoint for presentations will be essential if you are hoping for a promotion to Team leader in the future so get ahead of the game and enrol on an IT skills course to ensure you have what it takes when the opportunity arises. Vision2learn provides a range of fully funded, nationally accredited e-learning courses including a Level 2 Certificate in IT User Skills. 

The Full Package

Immersing yourself in the warehousing industry shows your commitment to building a long and rewarding career for yourself. Studying a full NVQ Qualification in Warehouse and Storage will give you a broad understanding of the skills and knowledge needed to work and succeed in higher warehouse roles.

5 steps to getting a promotion.

Do you have what it takes to be a great Team Leader? If you have your sights set on a promotion, these 5 steps will tell you exactly what you need to do to get there:

1. Spend time working in a role such as Warehouse Operative or Forklift Driver so you gain invaluable working knowledge of the systems and procedures that are in place. 
2. Work every day as though you are being assessed for a promotion – you never know when you managers are taking notice so always be ready to impress.
3. Go above and beyond to do great work by putting in the extra effort to ensure the success of the entire team, even if it means picking up other peoples’ tasks to get the job done.
4. Make an effort to be a positive and enthusiastic member of the team, helping your colleagues and being a source of happiness and inspiration will stand you in great stead throughout your career.
5. Say yes to as much training as you possibly can. Always have an improvement mindset, let your managers know that you want to gain new skills and that you want to be considered for promotion when the time is right.

Upskill and become a Forklift Driver

The three most common forklifts used in the warehouse industry are;

  • Counterbalance Forklift
  • Reach Truck
  • Pedestrian Controlled Lift Truck.

These accreditation bodies can help you find a reputable training course: 

Find out what to expect from your training course here.

Upskill and become a HGV Driver

There are 6 main steps to becoming an HGV/LGV Driver;

1. Get your car driving license
2. Get a medical & obtain a medical exam report (Form D4) from your doctor
3. Apply for a provisional lorry license
4. Sit your theory test
5. Take the driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) Test
6. Take the relevant category practical test

See each of the steps in detail here

Related Content

Going Perm. Find more information on how to go from temp to perm here.

Career Progression. Find out more about our 4 steps to career progression here  

Boost your career and pay. Find out how you can use upskilling to boost your career and your pay packet here

Becoming a Team Leader. For more information about becoming a Team Leader click here.

As we prepare for 2020 and all of the exciting opportunities it brings for the warehouse and logistics industry, this is the perfect opportunity for you to let know what we missed in 2019. Is there something you would like us to write about or any advice you wish we had included? Let us know here.