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Forklift Drivers move loads to and from different locations.

Average salaries are in the region of £16,000.00 to £23,000.00. Salaries will vary depending on location / employer

Career Profile

A Forklift Driver move loads to and from different locations. 

What they do

From moving materials on pallets to positioning loads at various points on a construction site, Forklift Divers are able to complete physical tasks quickly and accurately.

Whether driving counterbalance forklifts or using telescopic handlers, Forklift Drivers are expected to manoeuvre a range of machinery.

Forklift Drivers also need to be able to judge measurements such as weights. Equipped with a load chart or a computerised sensor system, Forklift Drivers can determine whether a given task is possible by taking weight, height and boom angle into consideration.  

Typical tasks include:

  • Loading and unloading materials from a variety of vehicles
  • Moving pallet-packed materials around the site or storage facility
  • Checking loads are secure
  • Performing equipment checks and basic maintenance
  • Following written instructions and keeping records
  • Adhering to health and safety regulations

Hours & Salary

  • Trainee and newly trained Forklift Drivers can earn in the region of £12,000 to £15,000
  • Trained with experience Forklift Drivers can earn in the region of £16,000 to £23,000
  • More experienced Forklift Drivers may earn in excess of £23,000 with overtime or shift work allowances enhancing basic earnings

Salaries depend on location, employer and level of responsibility. 

In a full-time position, Forklift Drivers usually work between 37 and 42 hours per week. Shift work can be necessary and overtime may often be available.

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Qualifications & Training

What qualifications or subjects do I need for this role?

Although no formal entry qualifications are required to become a Forklift Driver, it is generally recommended to achieve four GCSEs, including maths and English, at grade C or above, or their equivalents, such as the Welsh Baccalaureate or Scottish Nationals.

Do I need any experience?

While experience as a Forklift Driver may not always be necessary, many employers will value some construction site work experience.

Approved forklift training must be completed before operating a forklift vehicle. Basic training is often provided by an employer and would take place at either a training centre or on site.

After basic training, there may be the opportunity to attend further forklift training courses. The Construction Plant Competence Scheme (CPCS) provides the opportunity to gain industry-recognised Trained or Competent Operator Cards.

Want to find out more?

Try our Matching Service for work experience opportunities in your local area, with new opportunties being added on a regualr basis. 

Looking for a vacancy?

Here are some construction vacancy websites you may find useful:


Total Jobs 

The number of jobs vacancies related to your preferred job role may vary daily, as these are external websites. Check regularly to see new opportunities as they are posted.

Career trends and forecasts

530 additional staff needed

The UK construction industry will need an additional 530 plant operatives every year to meet demand from now until 2019, according to the latest Construction Skills Network research (LMI).

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