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We asked Breda Wright from McDonald's to give some advice for people considering this job:


Breda Wright

Customer Care Manager


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  Breda Wright
It is a great place to work, there are so many opportunities to go further in the business.

Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.

Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
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Occupation Details

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Forklift Driver / Operator

Job Zone

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€18k >  
Fork Lift Truck Operator
Salary Range
(thousands per year)*
€18 -  
Related Information:
Data Source(s):

Last Updated: March, 2013

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
Shortage Indicator

The National Skills Bulletin 2016 identifies difficulty in relation to sourcing suitable candidates for a number of driving skills including:

  • fork lift drivers
  • articulated truck drivers/ heavy goods vehicle (HGV) drivers
  • reach truck drivers
  • rigid truck with Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC).

Occupational Category

Road Transport Operatives

Also included in this category:

Large goods vehicle drivers (e.g. heavy goods vehicle drivers; haulage contractors; lorry drivers); van drivers; bus and coach drivers; taxi and cab drivers and chauffeurs; driving instructors

Number Employed:


Part time workers: 20%
Aged over 55: 32%
Male / Female: 97 / 3%
Non-Nationals: 14%
With Third Level: 11%
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At a Glance... header image

Operates a forklift truck transporting heavy goods to and from difficult places.

The Work header image

Fork-lift trucks are vehicles designed to move heavy or bulky goods. They are mainly used in warehouses, stockyards and other storage areas. They are highly mobile with a very small turning circle. This allows them to move easily in confined spaces. They load and unload goods from vehicles such as lorries and aircraft. Fork Lifts also move materials and goods from one place to another.  
On the front of the truck are two forks that are operated by hydraulics.The driver must fit these forks into the pallets on which goods are stored. The operator then uses the hydraulic forks to lift the pallet, takes it to where it is needed and sets it down. Operators need to carry out maintenance checks.  
Some goods, such as bricks, can be moved by fork-lift trucks without the need for pallets. They are stacked in bales with spaces for the forks. The operator must work carefully as these goods are not protected by pallets.  
Some trucks are fitted with small computer display panels that direct the operator where to place goods in the warehouse.  
Operators may also have to keep records and follow instructions written on a worksheet. They are also responsible for the basic maintenance of the truck. This includes greasing or oiling parts and changing the battery.  
Fork-lift truck operators may have to work in a noisy and dusty environment. Working outdoors in all weather conditions may also be necessary.


Tasks & Activitiesheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported tasks and activities for this occupation


Move levers or controls that operate lifting devices, such as forklifts, lift beams with swivel-hooks, hoists, or elevating platforms, to load, unload, transport, or stack material.


Inspect product load for accuracy and safely move it around the warehouse or facility to ensure timely and complete delivery.


Manually or mechanically load or unload materials from pallets, skids, platforms, cars, lifting devices, or other transport vehicles.


Position lifting devices under, over, or around loaded pallets, skids, or boxes and secure material or products for transport to designated areas.


Weigh materials or products and record weight or other production data on tags or labels.


Perform routine maintenance on vehicles or auxiliary equipment, such as cleaning, lubricating, recharging batteries, fueling, or replacing liquefied-gas tank.


Move controls to drive gasoline- or electric-powered trucks, cars, or tractors and transport materials between loading, processing, and storage areas.


Operate or tend automatic stacking, loading, packaging, or cutting machines.


Signal workers to discharge, dump, or level materials.


Hook tow trucks to trailer hitches and fasten attachments, such as graders, plows, rollers, or winch cables to tractors, using hitchpins.

Work Activities header image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported work activities in this occupation.


Handling and Moving Objects:  Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.


Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment:  Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.


Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships:  Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.


Performing General Physical Activities:  Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.


Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material:  Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.


Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings:  Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.


Controlling Machines and Processes:  Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).


Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events:  Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.


Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates:  Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.


Making Decisions and Solving Problems:  Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Knowledge header image

The following is a list of the five most commonly reported knowledge areas for this occupation.


Public Safety and Security:  Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.


English Language:  Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.


Customer and Personal Service:  Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.


Production and Processing:  Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.


Mathematics:  Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

Skillsheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported skills used in this occupation.


Operation and Control:   Controlling operations of equipment or systems.


Operation Monitoring:   Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.


Coordination:   Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.


Equipment Maintenance:   Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.


Monitoring:   Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.


Reading Comprehension:   Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.


Critical Thinking:   Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.


Active Listening:   Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.


Troubleshooting:   Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.


Judgment and Decision Making:   Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Personal Qualitiesheader image

You will need good co-ordination. You must be able to assess weights and distances and work safely and steadily. The work can be repetitive and requires good levels of concentration, patience and an awareness of what is going on around the truck. You must be responsible. You need to follow verbal and written instructions well.

Further Informationheader image

A detailed description of this occupation can be found on a number of online databases. Follow the link(s) below to access this information:

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Go..Forklift Engineering Technician - from:  N.C.S. [UK]
Go..Forklift Truck Operator - from:  N.C.S. [UK]

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Transport & Logistics

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