Residents of Columbus, Ohio benefit from a diverse job market and an unemployment rate that’s lower than the national average. The city, which is the county seat and state capital, is home to Ohio State University, one of the area’s biggest employers, and there are ample government job opportunities in the area, as well. We gathered some data about the Columbus, OH job market, metro statistics on job growth and employment, and did a deep-dive into several data sources to get a glimpse into the current Columbus, OH job market for warehouse workers.
Warehouse Jobs: Roles and Responsibilities
Working in the warehouse industry can mean different things, as there are a variety of positions and roles within the industry, each playing an integral role in a warehouse’s operations – and the company’s bottom line. Warehouse roles range from general laborers to pick and pack positions, roles in shipping and receiving, and more, as well as management roles such as warehouse manager, warehouse assistant, and warehouse operations manager.
Generally, warehouse workers are responsible for the receiving, shipping, and storage of goods that are stored within the facility, relying on processes and methods to ensure that shipments are prompt, orders are fulfilled correctly, and that the products being stored are protected from theft and deterioration.
Some manufacturers and retailers maintain their own warehouse operations, while other warehouses are third-party operations that handle products and materials for one or sometimes several other companies. These third-party warehouses (3PLs), sometimes called independent or public warehouses, charge a fee for storing a company’s products and materials. Others are specialty warehouses, offering storage environments suitable for perishable goods, such as refrigeration.
Responsibilities of a warehouse worker may include record keeping and database management, stock picking and packing, forklift operation, shipping and receiving functions, sanitation (cleanup), team management and operations management, and more. In some warehouse operations, roles are highly specific, with designated team members who operate forklifts, others who pick stock, and others who work on shipping and receiving docks, while in other warehouses, workers may take on a more generalist role and handle any number of responsibilities.
Columbus, OH Job Market
The state of Ohio has been hovering at or just above the national unemployment rate in June and July 2017. In July 2017, for instance, the U.S. unemployment rate was 4.3%, while Ohio’s unemployment rate was 5.2%. Columbus, OH, however, being a bustling city with some of the state’s largest employers, has an unemployment rate of 4.1% so far for 2017, according to U.S. News. Compared to the national year-to-date unemployment data, Columbus, OH falls 0.8% lower than the national average, meaning that employment prospects here are better than many areas across the country.
Screenshot via U.S. News
The average annual salary in Columbus is slightly below the national average, however. In Columbus, the average annual salary is $47,420, compared to $48,320 for the U.S. as a whole. Major industries in Columbus, according to U.S. News, include:
- Finance and Insurance
- Health Care and Social Assistance
- Management of Companies and Enterprises
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average hourly wage for stock clerks and order fillers in the Columbus, OH area is $12.93, which is slightly higher than the U.S. average of $12.82 per hour.
Abodo.com ranked Columbus, Ohio as a city with one of the fastest-growing job markets in the U.S., calculated using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) from 2012 to 2015. Specifically, Columbus ranked among the top 10 in the following occupation groups:
- Arts, Design, Entertainment, and Sports and Media: 10th
- Health Care Practitioners and Technicians: 8th
- Computer and Mathematics Occupations: 9th
- Community and Social Service Occupations: 7th
According to BizJournals.com in a January 2017 report, the job outlook in Columbus, Ohio is one that many regions “would kill to have.”
We compiled the current state of the warehouse job market in Columbus, Ohio using data from a variety of area sources. In total, we found 6,155 warehouse job results in the Columbus, OH area. We also gathered some data on available openings for specific warehouse roles in Columbus using the same data sources:
- Warehouse Manager: 5,553 results
- Warehouse Specialist: 1,890 results
- Warehouse Worker: 3,618 results
- Warehouse Supervisor: 4,362 results
- Warehouse Associate: 6,439 results
- Warehouse Assistant: 2,015 results
In late July 2017, news hit the airwaves about Amazon’s mass hiring spree – the company planned to hire 40,000 full-time workers and 10,000 part-time workers – around the country, including positions for two warehouses in the Columbus area. According to the Dayton Daily News, “The hiring at Amazon’s Ohio facilities comes months after the online retailer announced it would add an air cargo hub at the Cincinnati/ Northern Kentucky International Airport. Amazon planned to invest more than $1 billion into the new hub while hiring 2,700 people at the airport.” Candidates offered these positions would be responsible for packing or sorting boxes and shipping, according to the report.
In addition to the number of job openings, it’s also important to consider other factors that can be indicators of the overall health of the warehousing industry. At LoopNet.com, there are 89 warehouses for sale or lease in the Columbus, OH area at the time of this writing, and at CityFeet.com, we found 56 industrial spaces available for lease in the area.
Top Warehouse Employers in the Columbus, OH Area
Amazon isn’t the only company offering warehouse jobs in the Columbus, OH area. Here’s a look at some of the top employers in the region.
Gap, Inc., the widely recognized fashion brand, was recognized in the Business of Fashion’s first-ever Best Companies To Work For In Fashion report. The company hires warehouse workers in and around the Columbus, OH area.
Another retailer, The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. hires warehouse workers in the Columbus area for processing cartons with multiple UPCs, sorting and preparing merchandise for stocking, and other responsibilities.
Speed Commerce offers fulfillment services and other solutions for retailers who want to transform their customers’ shopping experience. The company hires both seasonal and full-time warehouse workers.
Everyone knows Best Buy, a retailer well-known for offering great buys in electronics. In the Columbus area, Best Buy hires general warehouse workers for operating equipment and other duties.
Everyone’s favorite fresh-food retailer, Kroger was ranked #8 on the OMNIKAL (formerly DiversityBusiness.com) Omni50 Award Winners list – which identifies the top 50 U.S. corporations that award the most business to “the growing, culturally diverse vendor/supplier marketplace.” Kroger hires material handlers, pickers, and operations staff for its warehouse operations in and around Columbus.
One of the biggest big-box retailers, Target hires warehouse workers in and near Columbus for receiving and processing freight, managing and moving inventory, and shipping items to stores and guests.
2J Supply is an HVAC distributor with locations in three states: Ohio, Kentucky, and West Virginia. The company has accumulated numerous awards, including being named one of the top 100 companies by the Dayton Business Journal since 2004. They look for candidates with supply chain, warehouse, and HVAC knowledge, as well as customer service skills.
Maintenance Supply Headquarters
A wholesale maintenance supplier that caters mostly to the multi-family industry, Maintenance Supply Headquarters hires warehouse pickers and other warehouse workers in the Columbus area.
The Columbus, Ohio area is home to many bustling industries, with dozens of companies regularly seeking warehouse workers for both temporary and full-time positions. This short list represents only a few of the many companies operating in the Columbus region.
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