Becoming a Forklift Technician: A Rewarding Career Path

If you’re looking for a career where you can use (or learn) mechanical skills and enjoy a fast-paced and varied day of activity, becoming a forklift technician might be the right move for you. As a forklift technician, you will help customers stay productive by keeping their forklifts in top condition, averting breakdowns or addressing them quickly when they do happen.  

At G&W, our field service technicians are the face of the company. Our customers form an impression about us based on their interactions with our technicians in the field. We have more than 160 forklift technicians, including mobile techs, who come to your jobsite to perform maintenance or service.  

What does a forklift technician do?  

Forklift techs perform regularly scheduled service on customer equipment, to keep the equipment well-maintained. They also handle service calls for breakdowns or other emergency service needs.  

Forklift techs need to understand different brands of forklifts and accurately assess and repair them. 

At G&W, our techs have a deep well of knowledge regarding forklifts – of a wide range of brands, not just what we sell. Part of their job is communicating with customers. Our techs can answer questions about why a breakdown occurred, offer suggestions to avoid these issues and advise when new equipment is the better answer.  

All our forklift techs stay in communication with our sales department, helping us identify customer needs. Our sales team can step in with guidance when replacing a forklift is more cost-effective than a repair. We recognize that customer needs vary, so our advice is always specific to your situation, your budget and your business.  

How does the work of a mobile forklift technician differ? 

A mobile forklift tech comes to the customer, in a van fully equipped with the tools needed for forklift service or maintenance.  

G&W has a team of mobile forklift techs who can get to a job site quickly when our customers need it. Our dispatch team ensures they are ready to go. The minute a call comes in, they can schedule a tech to handle it. Our mobile techs typically can be at a customer’s worksite within two hours of a service call.  

Our mobile techs all drive G&W branded vans that hold everything they need to perform a job safely and effectively.  

What type of training do forklift techs have? 

Forklift techs typically hold factory certifications. Some techs hold welding or other special certifications. MLA (Mitsubishi Logisnext Americas) offers e-learning as well as instructor-led courses. Other manufacturers offer similar levels of training. MLA has the following levels that all G&W techs participate in: Basic, Skilled, Journeyman and Master. Each technician can achieve these levels for IC forklifts, electric forklifts and VNA forklifts. 

At G&W, our forklift technician training includes a list of required courses for specific models of forklifts that they take regularly to keep their skills top-notch.  

What skills do you need to become a forklift tech? 

Forklift techs need to be mechanically skilled and understand the various makes and models they work on regularly. G&W techs can work on nearly all makes and models of forklifts. We have experience with new and used lift trucks and the brands we sell, as well as the brands that we don’t. This gives us the flexibility to help a wide range of customers.  

At G&W, in addition to the mechanical skills needed, our techs must have the ability to communicate effectively with customers. Communication is important to us, because we want to partner with our customers to help them achieve their highest level of productivity. That includes being able to give our best recommendations regarding service, maintenance plans and parts.  

Who supervises the forklift technicians at G&W? 

At G&W, we have forklift technician supervisors (FTS). The FTS are leaders in the field. They help the techs on their team by scheduling their time, they weigh in on difficult jobs, and they help ensure an even workload throughout the branch. 

Do forklift techs have options for career advancement? 

At G&W, our forklift techs can advance to several roles, including field team supervisor, shop foreman, technical communicator (TC) and PSSR. We have a branch manager who began with our company as a tech and a regional operations manager who started at our parts counter. 

If an employee at G&W displays the desire to work hard and make an impact, they can grow their career and learn new skills.  

Need a forklift tech for service?  

Forklift service and parts is the foundation of G&W’s business. We offer a fully stocked parts department and a 24/7 online parts store (with fast delivery – or it’s free!). Our technicians, including a fleet of locally dispatched, factory trained mobile technicians, serve North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia. Our techs can service all brands of forklifts, including equipment that was not purchased from G&W. Preventative maintenance programs are the best way to keep your fleets running, and our sales reps will develop a personalized plan for your forklifts. Learn more about our exceptional forklift service and parts

Interested in becoming a forklift technician? 

G&W is always looking for hardworking, forklift techs who want to make a difference for our customers. See our careers for forklift technician jobs and other career opportunities.