Packer Careers

How to become Packer

What does a Packer do?

Packers work on a production line, putting manufactured goods and products into containers such as boxes, trays, bags and crates. Some packers work by hand at a conveyor belt; others operate packing machines, loading the raw materials, packaging and labels. In the case of heavy goods, for example washing machines or vehicle spares, packers use loading and lifting gear.

Packaging is used for many reasons:

  • to protect goods during transportation
  • to preserve perishable goods
  • to give products an attractive appearance
  • to advertise the product to increase sales.

Packers' duties also include adding protective materials such as bubble wrap and polystyrene chips; sealing packaged goods with glue, staples or shrink-wrap; weighing and labelling packaged goods ready for distribution; cleaning work areas; and reporting any problems during the shift to supervisors. With experience, packers carry out sampling and testing duties as part of quality control procedures.

Some packers operate forklift trucks to move the goods to storage areas ready for loading and dispatch.

Packers have to adhere to health and safety regulations, particularly when packing hazardous materials.

What's the working environment like working as a Packer?

Packers usually work a 37- to 40-hour week, often covering shifts to include weekends or nights. Part-time work is common and there may be overtime.

Many packers work in factories and spend most of their time sitting or standing at a machine. Some factories are light and airy but others can be dusty and dirty. Some types of work, such as packing medicines, must be done in sterile conditions.

What does it take to become a Packer?

To be a packer you should:

  • be able to perform repetitive tasks carefully and methodically
  • have manual dexterity for some jobs
  • be able to work at speed
  • be able to follow instructions
  • be physically fit
  • have clear handwriting for labelling
  • be aware of safety issues.

Packer Career Opportunities

Factories throughout the UK employ packers. Many other organisations also employ packers, including mail order companies, warehouse and storage companies, shipping and forwarding agents, large retailers, removals firms, and companies specialising in exporting goods.

Packers may progress to supervisor or chargehand.

Further information

If you would like to know anything about Packer that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.


British Association of Removers (BAR)
Tangent House
62 Exchange Road
WD18 0TG
Tel: 01923 699480

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