what does a picker/packer do?

  • job profiles
  • August 25, 2020

Pickers/packers go by a lot of different handles on job search sites: "Picker Packer - Lead," "Picker/Packer - Warehouse,” “Warehouse Associate - Picker/Packer,” “Warehouse Selector” and more. Despite having a hundred different names, however, the role is essentially the same in all of them. The crux of the job? Selecting appropriate items in a warehouse setting and preparing them for shipment.

On a more granular level, the daily duties assigned to pickers/packers also include:

  • moving and sorting goods and materials
  • picking, inspecting and packing products
  • labeling and boxing products prior to shipping.
  • continually stocking/unstocking shelves
  • attending to and processing shipments
  • helping to complete shipments, process and load orders
  • reading orders and placing them in the proper delivery areas
  • preventing on-the-job injuries by maintaining safety best practices across all areas of the operation
  • participating in preventive maintenance activities
  • coaching and mentoring peers

how do you become a picker/packer?

For those interested in becoming a picker/packer, good news: There are few barriers to entry for this entry-level role. Little previous experience is actually required, in fact, so you should be able to break into this space if you set your mind to it.

Does that sound like you? If so, why not get started with your job search today? Two ways that aspiring pickers/packers can get a foot in the door:

  • browsing picker/packer roles on job search sites
  • signing up with a staffing firm that can proactively identify relevant positions based on your interests and experience — and then email them directly to your inbox when they become available

what are the key skills of a picker/packer?

Success as a picker/packer depends on being self-motivated, quick on your feet and careful when following directions. It’s a role that comes with plenty of opportunities for on-the-job learning, growth and exposure to different areas of the operation. Given the key responsibilities, the following qualities are generally highly prized by employers when considering new hires:

  • team player
  • communication
  • physical fitness
  • ability to carry heavy loads
  • stamina to remain standing for long periods of time
  • attention to detail
  • ability to follow written and verbal instruction
  • self-motivated
  • demonstrated safety mindset
  • quality-oriented
  • time management

how much does a picker/packer make?

Pickers/packers tend to work in hourly shifts, with average wages that break out into three tiers, as follows:

  • low $12.45
  • middle $14.47
  • high $16.24

Given that level of variation in hourly wages, it might be a good idea for you to use our free salary comparison tool. That way, you can see how your market stacks up in terms of compensation compared to other markets and regions.

key takeaways

We've covered the ins and outs of daily work for your average pickers/packers. By now, you should have a pretty clear idea of what to expect in the role, as well as next steps to pursue if you're looking to get started.

To recap, we've covered:

  • what pickers/packers do on a daily basis
  • training, experience and core requirements
  • essential skills
  • salary
  • and more

Got it? Good! Now, it's time to take the next step: Search for picker/packer jobs. Plus, if you're up for a career change — and a pay-rate upgrade — check out these in-depth breakdowns of highly in-demand jobs in the manufacturing and logistics space. It’s an easy way to get actionable insights around exactly what steps you need to take to make your next move today.