Summary Report for:
43-4151.00 - Order Clerks
Receive and process incoming orders for materials, merchandise, classified ads, or services such as repairs, installations, or rental of facilities. Generally receives orders via mail, phone, fax, or other electronic means. Duties include informing customers of receipt, prices, shipping dates, and delays; preparing contracts; and handling complaints.
Sample of reported job titles: Administrative Assistant, Customer Service Representative, Hub Associate, Materials Scheduler, Materials Specialist, Order Analyst, Order Clerk, Order Entry Administrator, Order Entry Representative, Warehouse Clerk
Tasks | Tools & Technology | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Obtain customers' names, addresses, and billing information, product numbers, and specifications of items to be purchased, and enter this information on order forms.
- Prepare invoices, shipping documents, and contracts.
- Inform customers by mail or telephone of order information, such as unit prices, shipping dates, and any anticipated delays.
- Receive and respond to customer complaints.
- Verify customer and order information for correctness, checking it against previously obtained information as necessary.
- Direct specified departments or units to prepare and ship orders to designated locations.
- Check inventory records to determine availability of requested merchandise.
- Review orders for completeness according to reporting procedures and forward incomplete orders for further processing.
- Attempt to sell additional merchandise or services to prospective or current customers by telephone or through visits.
- File copies of orders received, or post orders on records.
- Compute total charges for merchandise or services and shipping charges.
- Confer with production, sales, shipping, warehouse, or common carrier personnel to expedite or trace shipments.
- Recommend merchandise or services that will meet customers' needs.
- Adjust inventory records to reflect product movement.
- Collect payment for merchandise, record transactions, and send items such as checks or money orders for further processing.
- Inspect outgoing work for compliance with customers' specifications.
- Notify departments when supplies of specific items are low, or when orders would deplete available supplies.
- Recommend type of packing or labeling needed on order.
- Calculate and compile order-related statistics, and prepare reports for management.
Tools & Technology
Tools used in this occupation:
- Belt conveyors — Conveyer belts
- Cash registers — Electronic cash registers
- Laser fax machine — Laser facsimile machines
- Package stops — Belt diverters
- Personal computers
- Photocopiers — Copy machines
- Point of sale payment terminal — Credit card authorization software
- Printer calculator — Printing calculators
- Special purpose telephones — Multiline telephone systems
Technology used in this occupation:
- Accounting software — Intuit QuickBooks software
- Compliance software — Automated manifest system software
- Data base user interface and query software — Data entry software; Microsoft Access
- Document management software — Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat
- Electronic mail software — Email software; Microsoft Outlook
- Enterprise resource planning ERP software — IBM Sterling Configure, Price, Quote; Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne; SAP software
- Enterprise system management software — Microsoft System Center
- Internet browser software — Web browser software
- Office suite software — Corel WordPerfect Office
- Presentation software — Microsoft PowerPoint
- Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel
- Word processing software — Microsoft Word
- 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.
- Sales and Marketing — Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
- Clerical — Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
- 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.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
- Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Persuasion — Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
- Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
- Negotiation — Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
- Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Mathematics — Using mathematics to solve problems.
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
- Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Finger Dexterity — The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
- Perceptual Speed — The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Flexibility of Closure — The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
- Number Facility — The ability to add, subtract, multiply, or divide quickly and correctly.
- Speed of Closure — The ability to quickly make sense of, combine, and organize information into meaningful patterns.
- Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Performing Administrative Activities — Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.
- Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
- Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
Detailed Work Activities
- Verify accuracy of financial or transactional data.
- Collect deposits, payments or fees.
- Calculate financial data.
- Discuss goods or services information with customers or patrons.
- Manage clerical or administrative activities.
- Calculate costs of goods or services.
- Compile data or documentation.
- Promote products, services, or programs.
- Provide notifications to customers or patrons.
- Send information, materials or documentation.
- Confer with coworkers to coordinate work activities.
- Respond to customer problems or complaints.
- Calculate shipping costs.
- Prepare documentation for contracts, transactions, or regulatory compliance.
- File documents or records.
- Inspect shipments to ensure correct order fulfillment.
- Provide information to coworkers.
- Maintain inventory records.
- Obtain personal or financial information about customers or applicants.
- Monitor inventories of products or materials.
- Recommend packing or shipping methods.
- Inspect items for damage or defects.
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 93% responded “Every day.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 65% responded “Extremely important.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 55% responded “Extremely important.”
- Contact With Others — 63% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Deal With External Customers — 46% responded “Extremely important.”
- Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People — 48% responded “Every day.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 25% responded “Some freedom.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 35% responded “Some freedom.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 41% responded “Every day.”
- Frequency of Conflict Situations — 29% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Electronic Mail — 49% responded “Every day.”
- Physical Proximity — 57% responded “Moderately close (at arm's length).”
- Spend Time Sitting — 37% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 64% responded “40 hours.”
- Exposed to Contaminants — 44% responded “Every day.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 40% responded “Every day.”
- Time Pressure — 33% responded “Every day.”
- Very Hot or Cold Temperatures — 54% responded “Every day.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 37% responded “Very important.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 29% responded “Not important at all.”
|Title||Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed|
|Education||These occupations usually require a high school diploma.|
|Related Experience||Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include sheet metal workers, forest fire fighters, customer service representatives, physical therapist aides, salespersons (retail), and tellers.|
|SVP Range||(4.0 to < 6.0)|
Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
|90||High school diploma or equivalent|
|9||Some college, no degree|
Interest code: CES
- Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
- Enterprising — Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
- Social — Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
- Working Conditions — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2014)||$14.99 hourly, $31,180 annual|
|Employment (2012)||213,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2012-2022)||Decline (-3% or lower)|
|Projected job openings (2012-2022)||56,000|
|Top industries (2012)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data and 2012-2022 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.
- Information Clerks . Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.