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How Do I Become a Supply Clerk?

Supply clerks may be responsible for ordering new supplies, such as copy paper, for their company.
A supply clerk is responsible for keeping track of a company's inventory.
Supply clerks have to know the right vendors to contact in order to get quality supplies for the company.
Supply clerks work with shipping and delivery companies to send and receive goods.
Supply clerks may be in charge of ordering supplies, such as tape.
Article Details
  • Written By: Gregory Hanson
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 29 August 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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A job-seeker who wants to become a supply clerk should acquire basic familiarity and experience working in a stock room or similar setting. He or she should also have a solid understanding of basic office and warehousing procedures and practices as well as familiarity with the tools and software used in these settings. A basic education is helpful for someone who is looking to become a supply clerk, but education beyond high school is not generally required for this position. Licenses and certifications are sometimes needed, and a valid driver’s license is likely to be required.

Supply clerks are normally responsible for tracking the flow of goods and records through a business or governmental organization. They ensure that necessary supplies are available as they are required and are often responsible for managing the procurement of supplies, with an eye toward reducing total costs for their employers. They will often also work with outside shipping agencies to send or receive packages.

Any high-quality high school education will provide most of the knowledge and many of the skills needed to become a supply clerk. Mathematical proficiency is useful, as supply clerks are required to keep accurate records of supplies purchased and dispensed. Computer skills are helpful as well, as the use of basic business and accounting software is normally a job duty of supply clerks.

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Experience in related positions can provide much of the background knowledge needed to become a supply clerk. A job in a copy shop or office supply store might provide familiarity with many business procedures. Any position that deals with inventory maintenance and control could prove helpful. A job as an assistant to a supply clerk would provide hands-on experience with all of the skills and tools needed to become a supply clerk after a year or two of work.

This type of job often includes handling cash and making purchases. Experience in these areas is certainly helpful. Lack of a criminal record is apt to be particularly important for someone trying to become a supply clerk, as firms are unlikely to entrust any tasks involving purchasing or inventory to people who are potential theft risks.

Some supply clerk jobs may also require vehicle skills. A supply clerk may need to operate light warehouse equipment, up to and including a forklift, and appropriate certification can be helpful when applying for jobs that require this skill. A valid driver’s license is often a requirement to become a supply clerk, as some driving, to pick up and deliver items, is often part of the job.

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