Warehouse Operations

About Warehouse Operations

Today’s foodservice distribution warehouses are fast-paced environments where food and supplies are received from across the country every day. Distribution centers include many storage areas capable of maintaining products at an optimal temperature to ensure the product’s safety and integrity.

One of the big keys to excellent customer service is order accuracy, so foodservice distributors use technology and well-defined practices to make sure they get the customer’s order right. Once a customer order is received, products are selected and loaded onto multi-temperature controlled trailers, and then professional drivers deliver the order to the customer’s kitchen.  Each order can contain dozens of items with differing temperature or handling requirements and they must be combined and loaded in a manner that supports safe, accurate, and efficient delivery. Success requires coordination and collaboration across a diverse team of people: receivers, selectors, lift truck operators, refrigeration engineers, food safety experts, and others. Under the leadership of dedicated managers, these team members ensure distribution of safe, high-quality products.

Male Warehouse Worker Using Bar Code Scanner

Positions in Warehouse Operations

Order Selection

  • Complete customer’s grocery list.
  • Locate and identify order items and get them for the customers’ order.
  • Build pallet load to assist in the safe delivery of the product to the customer.
  • These tasks will help make the customer happy.


  • Promote food safety and safe handling of products.
  • Ensure environment is safe.
  • Make sure everyone gets home safe by ensuring safety rules are followed.

Inventory Control

  • Maintain records of products entering and leaving the warehouse.
  • Identify and rectify product discrepancies (identify who made the mistake).
  • Ensure product quality prior to distribution.


  • Promote and encourage safety awareness and food safety protocols.
  • Communicate company’s culture through personal experience and performance standards.
  • Model specific job responsibilities and provide education through discussion, demonstration and guided practice.

Lift Truck Operator

  • Maintain safe speeds and always be aware of our surroundings.
  • Keep all items stocked in warehouse pick slots and make sure Order Selectors do not have to wait for product.
  • Keep safety in the forefront of your mind and stay current on your certifications.


  • Ascertain threats and/or violations and secure situations/environment.
  • Establish and enforce safety and food defense protocols to ensure a safe work environment, employee welfare and food safety.
  • Routinely assess perimeter lighting, video surveillance and gate security to ensure the safety of employees and the product.

Facility and Equipment Maintenance

  • Maintain a safe and functional infrastructure.
  • Ensure all warehouse equipment is operational and in safe working condition.
  • Preserve integrity of facility by conducting routine maintenance on facility and all operational equipment.

Operational Clerks

  • Update Purchase Orders.
  • Check-in Drivers.
  • Verify Purchase Orders.

Attributes for Warehouse Operations Positions

  • Business Knowledge
  • Risk Management
  • Analytic Abilities
  • Training/Teaching Abilities
  • Ability to Build Relationships
  • Process Oriented
  • Results Oriented

Find an IFDA Member Near You

If you would like information on IFDA Member Companies in your area, click here for a map of our member company corporate offices and distribution centers. Please visit individual IFDA member websites for information about their company and job opportunities.