The cut timber is then seasoned to keep the wood from shrinking or warping. Some timber may be seasoned by being left to dry in the sun and wind, however it is more commonly dried in specially designed kilns. Seasoned timber may be planed to give the wood a smooth finish or it may be shipped rough. The finished timber is examined to determine its grade and quality before it is packed and shipped to wholesalers. Timber Merchandisers generally work at either timber wholesalers, timber yards or Hardware stores. They are generally involved in one of two streams
- Timber Product Sales
- Timber Warehousing and Logistics
In both streams, there is a need for the worker to have an excellent understanding of the timber, its properties, it use and how it should be used.
Timber yard workers such as sorting and stacking timber, assisting timber machinists, assembling orders and racking offcuts.
MA0000071 Timber Industry Award
A timber merchandiser needs:
- to be physically fit and able to lift heavy objects
- good hand-eye coordination
- a high level of safety awareness
- the ability to maintain concentration and focus for long periods
The work is physically demanding, requiring heavy lifting, however many of the processes are mechanised and specialist equipment and technology is available to assist with many tasks.
Timber mills are often noisy and dusty environments, with many dangerous pieces of machinery in operation. Safety is very important in these workplaces to minimise the risk of serious injury.
On average, timber merchandisers can expect to earn at least between $657 and $702 per week ($34159 and $36494 per year) depending on the organisation they work for, and their level of experience. As a worker develops their skills, their earning potential will generally increase.
Timber merchandisers may operate a number of specialist machines including band saws, frame-saws, circular saws, planers, chippers and kilns. Machinery is also used to lift and move timber around the yard, including conveyor belts, forklifts and cranes. Callipers and measuring tapes may be used to measure timber, both before and after processing, with chalk or crayons used to mark the timber with measurements and other grading information. Timber merchandisers are required to wear safety equipment, which may include safety glasses, hearing protection, steel-capped boots, hard-hats and high visibility clothing. Clothing must also fit well, as loose clothing may get caught in machinery.
To become a merchandisers you usually need to complete a traineeship. Timber merchandiser’s traineeships usually take 24 months to complete. This traineeship is not available as a school- based traineeship.
If you think you already have some of the skills or competencies, obtained either through non-formal or informal learning, you may be able to gain credit through recognition of prior learning.