Career and Education Opportunities for Order Clerks in Columbia, South Carolina
If you want to be an order clerk, the Columbia, South Carolina area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. There are currently 2,470 jobs for order clerks in South Carolina and this is projected to shrink 21% to 1,950 jobs by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for order clerks are expected to shrink by about 26.1%. Order clerks generally receive and process incoming orders for materials, merchandise, or services such as repairs, installations, or rental of facilities.
Order clerks earn approximately $12 hourly or $25,890 annually on average in South Carolina. Nationally they average about $13 hourly or $27,990 yearly. Compared with people working in the overall category of Clerical, people working as order clerks in South Carolina earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Clerical nationally.
The Columbia area is home to twenty schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Columbia where you can get a degree as an order clerk. Given that the most common education level for order clerks is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be an order clerk if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Order Clerk
In general, order clerks receive and process incoming orders for materials, merchandise, or services such as repairs, installations, or rental of facilities. They also duties include informing customers of receipt, prices, and delays; preparing contracts; and handling complaints.
Order clerks verify customer and order data for correctness, checking it against previously obtained data as needed. They also obtain customers' names and billing data, product numbers, and specifications of items to be purchased, and enter this data on order forms. Equally important, order clerks have to inform customers by mail or telephone of order data, such as unit prices and any anticipated delays. They are often called upon to receive and respond to customer complaints. They are expected to file copies of orders received, or post orders on archives. Finally, order clerks ready invoices and contracts.
Every day, order clerks are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. They need to understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.
It is important for order clerks to inspect orders for completeness in line with reporting procedures and forward incomplete orders for further processing. They are often called upon to direct specified departments or units to ready and ship orders to designated locations. They also compute total charges for products or services and shipping charges. They are sometimes expected to talk with production or common carrier personnel so as to expedite or trace shipments. Somewhat less frequently, order clerks are also expected to notify departments when supplies of specific items are low, or when orders would deplete available supplies.
Order clerks sometimes are asked to recommend type of packing or labeling needed on order. They also have to be able to inspect outgoing work for adherence to customers' specifications and ready invoices and contracts. And finally, they sometimes have to calculate and compile order-related statistics, and ready summaries for management.
Like many other jobs, order clerks must be reliable and have exceptional integrity.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Columbia include:
- Correspondence Clerk. Compose letters in reply to requests for merchandise, damage claims, credit and other information, delinquent accounts, or unsatisfactory services. Duties may include gathering data to formulate reply and typing correspondence.
- Courtroom Clerk. Perform clerical duties in court of law; prepare docket of cases to be called; secure information for judges; and contact witnesses, attorneys, and litigants to obtain information for court.
- File Clerk. File correspondence, cards, and other records in alphabetical or numerical order or according to the filing system used. Locate and remove material from file when requested.
- Insurance Claims Processor. Obtain information from insured or designated persons for purpose of settling claim with insurance carrier.
- Insurance Processing Clerk. Process applications for, changes to, and cancellation of insurance policies. Duties include reviewing insurance applications to ensure that all questions have been answered, compiling data on insurance policy changes, changing policy records to conform to insured party's specifications, compiling data on lapsed insurance policies to determine automatic reinstatement according to company policies, canceling insurance policies as requested by agents, and verifying the accuracy of insurance company records.
- License Clerk. Issue licenses or permits to qualified applicants. Obtain necessary information; record data; advise applicants on requirements; collect fees; and issue licenses. May conduct oral, written, or performance testing.
- Municipal Clerk. Draft agendas and bylaws for town or city council; record minutes of council meetings; answer official correspondence; keep fiscal records and accounts; and prepare reports on civic needs.
- Office Clerk. Perform duties too varied and diverse to be classified in any specific office clerical occupation, requiring limited knowledge of office management systems and procedures. Clerical duties may be assigned in accordance with the office procedures of individual establishments and may include a combination of answering telephones, bookkeeping, typing or word processing, stenography, office machine operation, and filing.
- Procurement Clerk. Compile information and records to draw up purchase orders for procurement of materials and services.
- Receptionist. Answer inquiries and obtain information for general public, customers, and other interested parties. Provide information regarding activities conducted at establishment; location of departments, offices, and employees within organization.
- Store Clerk. Receive, store, and issue sales floor merchandise. Stock shelves, racks, and tables with merchandise and arrange merchandise displays to attract customers. May periodically take physical count of stock or check and mark merchandise.
- Weighter. Weigh, measure, and check materials, supplies, and equipment for the purpose of keeping relevant records. Duties are primarily clerical by nature.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Order Clerk Training
Orangeburg Calhoun Technical College - Orangeburg, SC
Orangeburg Calhoun Technical College, 3250 Saint Matthews Rd, Orangeburg, SC 29118-8299. Orangeburg Calhoun Technical College is a small college located in Orangeburg, South Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,605 students. Orangeburg Calhoun Technical College has a one to two year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated ten students in 2008.
National Professional Certification in Sales: The Certification was designed to capture the core Sales duties for a broad range of entry-level through first-line supervisory positions across the sales and service industries.
For more information, see the National Retail Federation Foundation website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Columbia, South Carolina
Columbia is located in Richland County, South Carolina. It has a population of over 127,029, which has grown by 9.2% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Columbia, 86, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Columbia cost $142,700 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, four hundred thirty-four new homes were built in Columbia, down from seven hundred the previous year.
The three most popular industries for women in Columbia are educational services, health care, and public administration. For men, it is educational services, public administration, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 18 minutes. More than 35.7% of Columbia residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 14.3%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Columbia is 16.1%, which is greater than South Carolina's average of 12.0%.
The percentage of Columbia residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 41.6%, is less than both the national and state average. Progressive Church, Bishop Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Church and Lutheran Seminary are among the churches located in Columbia. The largest religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.
Columbia is home to the Booker T Washington Center and the Longstreet Annex as well as Irwin Park and Columbia Historic District II. Shopping centers in the area include Five Points Shopping Center, Market Place Shopping Center and Columbiana Centre Shopping Center. Visitors to Columbia can choose from Marriott Columbia, Hampton Inn Columbia-SE-Fort Jackson and Embassy Suites Hotel for temporary stays in the area.