Material recording clerks track product information in order to keep businesses and supply chains on schedule.
What they do
Material recording clerks typically do the following:
- Keep records of items shipped, received, or transferred to another location
- Compile reports on various aspects of changes in production or inventory
- Find, sort, or move goods between different parts of the business
- Check inventory records for accuracy
Material recording clerks use computers, tablets, or hand-held devices to keep track of inventory. Sensors and tags enable these computers to automatically detect when and where products are moved, allowing clerks to keep updated reports without manually counting items.
The following are examples of types of material recording clerks:
Production, planning, and expediting clerks manage the flow of information, work, and materials within or among offices in a business. They compile reports on the progress of work and on any production problems that arise. These clerks set workers’ schedules, estimate costs, keep track of materials, and write special orders for new materials. They perform general office tasks, such as entering data or distributing mail. Expediting clerks maintain contact with vendors to ensure that supplies and equipment are shipped on time.
Shipping, receiving, and traffic clerks keep track of and record outgoing and incoming shipments. Clerks may scan barcodes with handheld devices or use radio frequency identification (RFID) scanners to keep track of inventory. They check to see whether shipment orders were correctly processed in their company’s computer system. They also compute freight costs and prepare invoices. Some clerks move goods from the warehouse to the loading dock.
Stock clerks and order fillers receive, unpack, and track merchandise. Stock clerks move products from a warehouse to store shelves. They keep a record of items that enter or leave the stockroom and inspect for damaged goods. These clerks also use handheld RFID scanners to keep track of merchandise. Order fillers retrieve customer orders and prepare them to be shipped.
Material and product inspecting clerks weigh, measure, check, sample, and keep records on materials, supplies, and equipment that enters a warehouse. They verify the quantity and quality of items they are assigned to examine, checking for defects and recording what they find. They use scales, counting devices, and calculators. Some decide what to do about a defective product, such as to scrap it or send it back to the factory to be repaired. Some clerks also prepare reports, such as reports about warehouse inventory levels.
Stock clerks and order fillers usually work in retail settings and sometimes help customers. Production, planning, and expediting clerks; shipping, receiving, and traffic clerks; and material and product inspecting clerks usually work in an office inside a warehouse or manufacturing plant.
Although shipping clerks and material inspecting clerks prepare reports in an office, they also spend time in the warehouse, where they sometimes handle packages or automatic equipment such as conveyor systems.
How to become a Material Recording Clerk
Material recording clerks typically need a high school diploma or equivalent and are trained on the job.
Material recording clerks typically need a high school diploma or equivalent.
Production, planning, and expediting clerks need to have basic knowledge of computer applications such as spreadsheet software.
Material recording clerks usually learn to do their work on the job. Training for most material recording clerks may last less than a month. Production, planning, and expediting clerks’ training can take several months.
Typically, a supervisor or more experienced worker trains new clerks.
Material recording clerks first learn to count stock and mark inventory, and then move onto more difficult tasks, such as recordkeeping. Production clerks need to learn how their company operates before they can write production and work schedules.
The median annual wage for material recording clerks was $30,010 in May 2019. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $21,210, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $50,840.
Overall employment of material recording clerks is projected to decline 1 percent from 2019 to 2029. Employment growth will vary by occupation (see table below).
The increased use of radio frequency identification (RFID) tags should allow these workers to quickly locate an item or count inventory in some retail stores, requiring fewer overall workers to stock shelves and fill orders over the decade.
Both RFID tags and increased use of other technology, such as hand-held devices that read barcodes automatically, allow fewer clerks in warehouses to do the same amount of work. In addition, use of barcodes, electronic and optical readers, and RFID tags is expected to increase accuracy in shipping, thereby reducing the number of times a product needs to be weighed, checked, or measured.
Similar Job Titles
Material Control Associate, Order Fulfillment Specialist, Receiver, Receiving Associate, Receiving Clerk, Receiving Coordinator, Shipper, Shipping Clerk, Shipping Coordinator, Traffic Assistant
Courier and Messenger; Weigher, Measurer, Checker and Sampler – Recordkeeping; Mail Clerk and Mail Machine Operator (except Postal Service); Print Binding and Finishing Worker; Inspector, Tester, Sorter, Sampler and Weigher.
The trade associations listed below represent organizations made up of people (members) who work and promote advancement in the field. Members are very interested in telling others about their work and about careers in those areas. As well, trade associations provide opportunities for organizational networking and learning more about the field’s trends and directions.
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Content retrieved from: US Bureau of Labor Statistics-OOH www.bls.gov/ooh,
CareerOneStop www.careeronestop.org, O*Net Online www.onetonline.org