Please note our phones are currently down - you will need to contact us via email or mobile until further notice. Thanks!

Ph | 03 578 5044

Forklift Operator

Forklift operators operate vehicles that have a lifting platform for shifting and stacking heavy articles such as pallets, bales, crates, containers or cartons.

What do Forklift Operators do?

  • Maintain forklifts.
  • Operate forklifts in warehouses, construction sites and wharves.
  • Ensure forklift loads are stable and safe.
  • Fill in paperwork, such as delivery forms, and electronically record the movement of goods.

Skills and knowledge

  • good driving skills.
  • thorough understanding of the operation and limitations of a forklift.
  • ability to judge distances, weights and volumes.
  • knowledge of the code of practice for forklift operators, including health and safety regulations.
  • knowledge of the fuel requirements of different forklifts including diesel, LPG, CNG (compressed natural gas) and battery-operated models.

Entry requirements

  • Forklift Operator Certificate. The certificate shows that you have been trained according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's code of practice.
  • To operate a heavy forklift, you need to have a Class 2 driver's license.
  • To operate a forklift on a road or in a public space, you must have a Class 1 driver's license with a forklift (F) endorsement.


There are no specific secondary education requirements to become a forklift operator, but employers usually prefer you to have NCEA Level 1 with Maths and English.

Find out more

Competenz (ITO)
0800 526 1800 - -

New Zealand Transport Agency website - instructors for forklift (F) endorsement

Axiom website - find out the Forklift Operator Certificate

IVS Training website - find out about the OSH Forklift Operator Certificate

New Zealand Transport Agency website - applying for forklift (F) endorsement