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Warehouse Clerk Interview
Questions

25 Questions and Answers by Rachelle Enns

Updated December 23rd, 2018 | Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.
Question 1 of 25
How do you handle back orders?
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How to Answer
As a warehouse clerk, you will often come across situations where products are on back order, high-demand items are out of stock, a vendor unexpectedly stops manufacturing a customer-favorite, or there is a product recall. The hiring authority would like to know how you handle a situation like this, where you may need to give a customer disappointing news or push a vendor to deliver a product on time, despite shortages. Show that you are persistent, and creative when it comes to situations requiring a workaround.
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1.
How do you handle back orders?
As a warehouse clerk, you will often come across situations where products are on back order, high-demand items are out of stock, a vendor unexpectedly stops manufacturing a customer-favorite, or there is a product recall. The hiring authority would like to know how you handle a situation like this, where you may need to give a customer disappointing news or push a vendor to deliver a product on time, despite shortages. Show that you are persistent, and creative when it comes to situations requiring a workaround.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"When a product is labeled in our system as back ordered, the first thing I do is call the vendor to ensure that the coding is correct. I will ask them to triple check and then give me a firm date when the item is back in stock. I will also call our other locations to see if they have any remaining product they could ship to my location. If the item is truly out, I will work with my customer on finding a comparable product."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"If a product were on back order, I would call the manufacturer or vendor for an ETA on the item. If the wait time were too long for the customer, I would help them to discover a similar product that may work for them. As strange as it may sound, I will also recommend they try our competitor if they need the product urgently. I would rather lose the immediate sale but have the customer come back at a later date, knowing we genuinely have their best interest in mind."
2.
When have you used an inventive method to stretch company resources beyond the normal level?
The interviewer would like to know about a time when you were creative with company resources. In a warehouse environment, resources could include maximizing the schedule to make the most of personnel, working with vendors to get the best deal possible, or finding a way to minimize waste. Talk to the interviewer about a time when you have been able to stretch company resources and be sure to include the impact your actions had on your employer.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I recently created fillable PDF's for our customer orders, which they can complete from their phone. This small change has encouraged a new system where we no longer have to print long order forms for the pickers. It has saved our company money and significantly reduces paper waste."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"In my previous role on the warehouse floor, I saw that we were leaving a lot of extra packaging material on the floor, due to messy cuts, causing a lot of scraps. I suggested a new measurement tool for cutting packaging material more accurately the first time. The suggestion was implemented, and my company has saved over $10,000 in bubble wrap waste alone."
3.
Tell me about a time when you used good judgement and logic to solve a problem.
The interviewer wants to hear about a particular situation where you used good judgment to solve a work problem. Be sure to showcase your logic and reasoning abilities. Share a brief overview of the problem, discuss the pro/cons of each decision you could have made, and tell the interviewer why the solution you chose was the best.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I use good logic every day! As a warehouse clerk, I face a multitude of scheduling and delivery problems. I used logic by figuring out how to arrange a drivers' schedule or ensure there are unloaders ready at the dock when a delivery comes in late or early."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I once had to solve a space issue in our warehouse. I rearranged the shipping lanes to allow for smaller customers to be combined in one area and arranged by the scheduled truck arrival, and large customers to have their dedicated shipping area. This change made locating shipments to load onto trucks much easier. My team of operators was thrilled with the change."
4.
As a warehouse clerk, organization and prioritization is key. How do you keep track of your work, ensure you meet deadlines?
The interviewer would like to see that you have a sense of urgency about you when it comes to meeting deadlines and taking care of workplace priorities. Being effective in a fast-past warehouse environment requires exceptional organizational skills. Tell the interviewer about your organizational and time management skills.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"I believe excellent organizational skills are essential to successful performance in the workplace. I use a strategic approach by anticipating, and keeping track of, all future orders, deliveries, and deadlines, through our warehouse management system. I will use lists and assign tasks in the system, to keep track of upcoming duties. I also use the calendar feature in our WMS to keep track of pending deliveries. I also keep a digital record of all documentation in the cloud, ensuring it is easily accessible, enabling me to be to react quickly should unanticipated events occur."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"I frequently work on multiple projects simultaneously, which I thoroughly enjoy. To make sure I meet deadlines, I identify the most pressing projects based upon their due dates, and use to-do lists and a calendar to keep track of all upcoming duties and important events. I review my lists every morning and at the end of each day to ensure the accomplishment of the assigned duties. I also do not hesitate to work overtime if necessary."
5.
In your opinion, what is the best organizational method for a warehouse?
The interviewer would like to see that you have the experience and knowledge to understand what separates a well-organized warehouse from a poorly organized warehouse. In your response, you can discuss the types of organization you have seen in the past, or even talk about the warehouse management systems and software you have used, which have led to an expertly organized environment.

Rachelle's Answer #1
"The warehouse I currently work is organized very well, with a variety of storage areas, and clearly marked loading and unloading zones. We also have a highly efficient row system and a central picking area. I understand that some warehouses are not as streamlined as this one, but I do appreciate organization as it greatly speeds up delivery time and improves the customer experience while boosting employee satisfaction."
Rachelle's Answer #2
"Some warehouses are smaller than others and easily become cluttered and disorganized. I know that layout is fundamental. For instance, inventory should be organized by picking frequency and sales revenue. This way, we can dramatically cut down time in the picking process, resulting in much faster customer service."
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