Explore Careers - Job Market Report
This unit group includes workers who 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.
bin filler, coal handler, conveyor console operator, forklift truck operator, freight handler (except air transport), furniture mover, lumber piler – building supplies, material handler, railway car loader, stockpiler, storage worker – material handling, truck loader, warehouseman/woman.
- 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
- Set up rooms for events, dismantle moveable walls and partitions, and organize or set up office furniture
- Perform other material handling activities such as counting, weighing, sorting, packing and unpacking.
- 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.
Outlook & Prospects for Material Handlers in Windsor-Sarnia Region
The future forecast and current conditions for an occupation can vary based on location or due to changes in the economy, technology, or demand for a product or service.
Local Employment Potential Information
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In the Windsor-Sarnia economic region, the outlook for material handlers is expected to be limited to average for the 2012-2013 period. This is a large occupation in the region, with a labour force of about 4,100 at the time of the 2006 census. Employment opportunities are sensitive to conditions in manufacturing. Nearly 60% of the material handlers in this region are employed by this sector at automotive parts, aerospace components, plastics products, and machinery manufacturers. The manufacturing sector is still recovering from significant job losses from the last economic downturn, with opportunities slowly improving.
In Ontario, the outlook for material handlers is expected to be average for the period 2012-2013. According to the 2006 census, this is one of the larger occupations in the province with over 78,000 material handlers in the labour force. Material handlers have a slightly younger age profile, with over 30% of Ontario workers under the age of 30. The majority of opportunities will arise due to turnover as these young workers leave for other jobs or advancement. Individuals with forklift operator certification and experience on other material handling equipment will have the best prospects.
Employment opportunities for this occupational group fluctuate with economic conditions, especially those in manufacturing. This sector employs the largest share of material handlers, approximately one-third of Ontario workers in this occupation. Some recovery in this industry over the last year should improve job opportunities. The wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing and retail trade sectors are also significant employers of material handlers. Increased automation of storage and retrieval systems has been negatively impacting job opportunities.
Local Labour Market News
Week of Apr 15 – Apr 19, 2013
Week of Apr 08 – Apr 12, 2013
- LamSar Industrial Contractors in Sarnia will manufacture 20 process modules for Osum Oil Sands Corp. in Alberta, creating up to 45 jobs
Week of Apr 01 – Apr 05, 2013
Week of Mar 25 – Mar 29, 2013
- GreenCore Composites Inc., a natural fiber manufacturer, is moving its pilot manufacturing operation from Mississauga to the Western University Research Park in Sarnia. The company plans to add up to 15 positions when production increases.
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