Material Handlers

(NOC 7452)

in All Trades and Transportation

Materials handlers handle, move, load and unload materials by hand or using a variety of material handling equipment. They are employed by transportation, storage and moving companies, and by a variety of manufacturing and processing companies and retail and wholesale warehouses.

Job Outlook

Average

Read more

  • Estimate decline employment change, 2017-2019
  • Estimate 160 openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019
  • Estimate Moderate rate of unemployment in 2016

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

  • Estimate Decline slightly employment change, 2017-2019
  • Estimate 3400 openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019
  • Estimate High rate of unemployment in 2016

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “average”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is comparable to the average for all occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a fairly large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities occur fairly regularly. The number employed in this occupation is expected to decline moderately over the next few years, which will likely limit the number of new opportunities available. With a large percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to be a key contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Material Handlers most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs may either be permanent or temporary positions, as both are common.

The median employment income for 51% of Material Handlers who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $38,904. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

$11.00

Minimum

$14.50

Median

$25.00

Maximum

Annual Pay

$5,103

Minimum

$27,417

Median

$53,776

Maximum

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

Hourly Pay

$13.00

Minimum

$20.35

Median

$34.00

Maximum

Annual Pay

$7,580

Minimum

$37,269

Median

$79,787

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Materials handlers handle, move, load and unload materials by hand or using a variety of material handling equipment. They are employed by transportation, storage and moving companies, and by a variety of manufacturing and processing companies and retail and wholesale warehouses.

Job duties

Material handlers (manual) perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Load, unload and move products and materials by hand or using basic material handling equipment.
  • Move household appliances and furniture onto and off moving trucks or vans.
  • Perform other material handling activities such as counting, weighing, sorting, packing and unpacking.

Material handlers (equipment operators) perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Operate winches and other loading devices to load and unload materials onto and off trucks, railway cars and loading docks of warehouses and industrial establishments.
  • Operate industrial trucks, tractors, loaders and other equipment to transport materials to and from transportation vehicles and loading docks and to store and retrieve materials in warehouses.
  • Connect hoses or pipes and operate equipment to load and unload liquid petroleum, chemical or other products into or from tank cars, tank trucks or storage tanks.
  • Operate equipment to dump materials such as coal, ore and grain into or to remove materials from railway cars, trucks or other vehicles.
  • Operate conveyors and equipment to transfer grain or other materials from transportation vehicles to elevators, bins or other storage areas.
  • May perform other activities, such as opening containers and crates, filling warehouse orders, assisting in taking inventory and weighing and checking materials.

Sample job titles

  • forklift operator
  • freight handler (except air transport)
  • furniture mover
  • lumber handler - building supplies
  • material handler - manufacturing and warehousing
  • railway car loader
  • truck loader
  • warehouse worker - material handling
  • warehouseperson

Skills

To work in these jobs, you should have good health, physical stamina, and strength for material handlers who work with heavy materials. Agility, coordination, and a mechanical aptitude would be helpful. You must be able to take direction and carry out instructions given by a supervisor.

Job requirements

  • Some high school education may be required.

Other considerations

None

By the numbers

Quick look

3,485

employed in 2016

80.1%

employed full-time

1.7%

self employed

9.9%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
90.1%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
38.9

median age

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

57,925

employed in 2016

88.8%

employed full-time

12.7%

self employed

5.3%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
94.7%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
46.8

median age

Where will I likely work?

43.1%

Halifax

22.4%

Northern

15.9%

Annapolis Valley

10.1%

Southern

8.4%

Cape Breton

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

Northern

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

21.1%

Retail Trade

20.9%

Transportation and Warehousing

17.4%

Wholesale Trade

8.4%

Food and Beverage Product Manufacturing

7.1%

Rubber, Plastics & Chemical Manufacturing

What is the age of Employment?

24.1%

15-24

20.5%

45-54

18.7%

55-64

17.6%

25-34

15.2%

35-44

4.0%

65+

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

34.1%

45-54

33.0%

35-44

18.7%

55-64

13.2%

25-34

Top levels of education

47.8%

High school

$41,040 median annual income
26.6%

Less than high school

$46,661 median annual income
13.0%

College certificate or diploma

$51,838 median annual income
8.2%

Trades certificate

$59,436 median annual income
3.3%

Bachelor's degree

N/A

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

29.4%

Trades certificate

$40,890 median annual income
25.5%

High school

$28,089 median annual income
22.6%

College certificate or diploma

$39,023 median annual income
18.2%

Less than high school

$25,753 median annual income
2.7%

Bachelor's degree

$36,972 median annual income

Education & training

Adult high school/secondary diploma programs

This program is typically offered at the high school level.

This instructional program class comprises any program that defines the prescribed requirements, specified by the appropriate jurisdiction, for the completion of and graduation from a secondary school program of academic subject matter offered for adult learners outside of the regular secondary school program. This does not include adult compensatory education programs resulting in completion of a high school equivalency certificate or diploma.

Institutions providing this program

Universite Sainte-Anne

Siège Social: 1695, Route 1

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS B0W 1M0

(902) 769-2114

Nova Scotia Community College - Annapolis Valley Campus

50 Elliott Road

Lawrencetown, NS B0S 1M0

(902) 825-3491

Nova Scotia Community College - Cumberland Campus

PO Box 550, 1 Main Street

Springhill, NS B0M 1X0

(902) 597-3737

Nova Scotia Community College - Akerley Campus

21 Woodlawn Road

Dartmouth, NS B2W 2R7

(902) 491-4900

Nova Scotia Community College - Burridge Campus

372 Pleasant Street

Yarmouth, NS B5A 2L2

(902) 742-3501

Nova Scotia Community College - Kingstec Campus

236 Belcher Street

Kentville, NS B4N 0A6

(902) 678-7341

Nova Scotia Community College - Lunenburg Campus

75 High Street

Bridgewater, NS B4V 1V8

(902) 543-4608

Nova Scotia Community College - Institute of Technology Campus

5685 Leeds Street

Halifax, NS B3K 2T3

(902) 491-6722

Nova Scotia Community College - Pictou Campus & School of Fisheries

PO Box 820, 39 Acadia Avenue

Stellarton, NS B0K 1S0

(902) 752-2002

Nova Scotia Community College - Shelburne Campus

PO Box 760, 1575 Lake Road

Shelburne, NS B0T 1W0

(902) 875-8640

Nova Scotia Community College - Strait Area Campus & Nautical Institute

226 Reeves Street

Port Hawkesbury, NS B9A 2A2

(902) 625-2380

Nova Scotia Community College - Marconi Campus

PO Box 1042, 1240 Grand Lake Road

Sydney, NS B1P 6J7

(902) 563-2450

Nova Scotia Community College - Truro Campus

36 Arthur Street

Truro, NS B2N 1X5

(902) 893-5385

Ground transportation - Other

This program is typically offered at the trades/college level.

This instructional program class comprises any program not listed above that relates to Ground Transportation.

Institutions providing this program

McKenzie College

74 Townsend Street

Sydney, NS B1P 5C8

(902) 562-8549

Commercial Safety College

Highway #2, Masstown PO Box 848

Truro, NS B2N 5G6

(902) 662-2190

Employment requirements & contacts

No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile

No contacts were found under this occupation profile

Additional resources

There are no additional resources for this occupation.

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