The Instawork guide to top 9 best practices for becoming a good warehouse worker

What makes one a good warehouse worker? We know everyone has their own way of doing their jobs and finding ways to excel at it. But there will always be some similar steps to achieve that level of excellence.

“I think it is very important to have communication skills.” - says Sharron Randle, an Instawork Professional who has worked in warehousing and manufacturing for over a decade with more than 6 years of experience with Amazon. She feels one can easily work at a warehouse if one has proper communication skills and pays attention to their work and adapts to it as quickly as one can. She shares, “I think you need to pay attention to details, like in Amazon, it’s all different kinds of department, like picking and packing, and sorting, shipping. Every department is different.”

Dedication and hard work are the two most important aspects of becoming a top-rated professional, but there are few more things one should keep in mind to stand out of the crowd and catch the eyes of higher officials while at work. We reached out to some of our professionals to see what they feel makes them good warehouse workers.

The following pointers delve into what makes a good warehouse worker:

  • Speed: A worker who has a higher picking and packing rate is always considered to be efficient than other workers. When asked about the qualified warehouse worker, one Instawork Professional, Trevon Haynes states: “Once you get the basics right, you should be able to go at an appropriate speed. Like 4 quarters an hour or six quarters an hour. It depends on what work you are filling, speed is definitely a big factor.”
  • Following instructions: An ideal warehouse worker should be able to pick up newer instructions quickly and accurately. Sharron feels, “You got to be a fast-paced worker, be it in any warehouse. Catch instructions easily.”
  • Physical fitness: At times, one has to work for long periods of time and the work might involve standing, lifting weights, and carrying heavy items. So, one key to be a good warehouse worker is to be in good physical condition. A common tip we see Instawork Professionals giving others is to wear good comfortable shoes with insoles!!
  • Attention to detail: Keeping an eye on the parameters that need to be followed for each of the fulfillment processes increases one’s efficiency as a warehouse associate. Though in this case, speed is only as good as not making any errors or not doing work as carefully as you can. Sharron finds it an important quality and thus says, “I pay attention to the item screen while picking so that my speed or rate goes faster..”
  • Communication: Communication is important in a warehouse environment. One must have proper communication skills to run a team-based workflow in a fulfillment process, thereby making the process easy and smooth for oneself and others. Leah, an Instawork Professional and one with over 3 decades of experience says,  “I am a people’s person. I know how to talk to people. I communicate very well and I am a problem solver.”
  • Cooperation: Working well with fellow workers by maintaining a positive attitude and taking suggestions from upper management positively will help one to become better as a worker. This will also reduce the chances of the health of the operation to get compromised. 
  • Adaptability and willingness: “You have to be open to learning.”, expresses Trevon. One must have an open mind to try something new and have a willingness to work. As warehouse work changes very frequently, one must be adaptable to new situations and workflows.
  • Knowing the right warehouse terms: One must get acquainted with common warehouse terminology. With the continuous rise of automation in the warehouse, various new terms that one might not have come across before can leave them confused. Cross-docking, palletizing, Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) Handling are some of them.
  • Organizational skills: Warehouses work like machines and to make a warehouse run smoothly, it must have workers who are familiar with structuring their part of the work and understanding the roles and responsibilities of a warehouse worker. This includes habits of maintaining decluttered aisle lanes and packing areas.

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