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Transportation is an often overlooked, yet essential industry. Not only has the industry as a whole experienced rapid growth over the past year, according to trend data from Indeed.com, but many jobs do not require a college degree. A few high-demand jobs in the transportation industry:
Material handlers load, unload, and stage products using forklifts and other equipment. According to Indeed.com, the average salary for material handler jobs is currently $22,000. Although the average salary is low, it’s a good entry-level job for an individual without formal training that wishes to get his or her foot in the door of a specific company or the transportation field.
Long haul truck drivers deliver goods from place to place, usually over long distances. Drivers may be away from home for several days, so it’s not the lifestyle for everyone. A post-secondary certificate is required for entry into the field, along with on-the-job training. The median annual wage for Heavy and Tractor-trailer truck drivers was $38,200 in 2012, according the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook.
Deliver drivers transport merchandise from warehouses and distribution centers to businesses and households. In contrast with long-haul truck drivers, their vehicles are smaller (26,000 pounds or less) and their driving distances shorter. One must be in good physical condition, as the job requires a lot of lifting and carrying. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual pay for delivery drivers was $27, 530 in 2012.
Dispatchers coordinate drivers, assigning drivers and vehicles according to customer demands. They must also be able to communicate with customers regarding the status of deliveries. Dispatchers are a crucial, but often thankless, part of the transportation industry. According to Salary.com, the median annual wage of dispatchers was $37, 487 as of April 2014. However, pay will vary greatly depending on employer and specific responsibilities.
Transportation is not a glamorous or easy industry to work in, yet transportation workers are crucial to the functioning of society and therefore are always needed.