Official 2024 Training Program

South Dakota Forklift Certification

Your authoritative guide to OSHA-compliant forklift operator licensing in South Dakota. Navigate state-specific requirements confidently for a safety-focused career.

For South Dakota residents and forklift operators, our official guide offers step-by-step instructions for OSHA compliance. 

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FAQ's about South Dakota Forklift Training

Is certification required for forklift operation in South Dakota?

Yes, in South Dakota, forklift operators are required to obtain certification to legally operate forklifts. OSHA mandates this certification to ensure safe forklift operation and compliance with workplace safety standards.

Do you have to get a forklift certification before applying for a job in South Dakota?

Obtaining a forklift certification in South Dakota isn’t a strict job application requirement, but it’s a powerful edge that sets you apart. It signals your commitment to safety, makes you a more attractive candidate, and significantly boosts your chances of landing a forklift operator job. Employers value certified individuals, as it reduces training costs and underscores your readiness to operate forklifts safely. In summary, while not obligatory, getting certified is a highly beneficial step in securing a forklift operator position in South Dakota.

Is hands-on training required to apply for a forklift job in South Dakota?

No, you do not need hands-on training to apply for a job position as a forklift operator in the state of South Dakota. This is because hands-on training and evaluation are typically offered by the hiring organization as part of the individual’s onboarding process. It is a legal requirement for the organization to provide hands-on training and assess each individual’s ability to operate the machinery safely and competently.

What steps can I follow to become an operator?

Read the steps below for a much more in-depth look at the process you need to take.


Enroll in the South Dakota Forklift Operator Online Course

Once you have decided you want to pursue a career as a South Dakota forklift operator, the recommended next step is to enroll in the online training course. This course consists of animated training videos, quizzes & final exam required to gain your certification.

Or if you prefer to learn more about the course before enrollment, click here to learn more.

Is this training online?

Yes, this training is intended to be completed online. Individuals can take the training on any device, including phone, tablet or computer.

How much does the certification cost?


What topics are covered in this course?

The course is broken up into 5 topics – each intended to satisfy the requirements set forth by OSHA. These topics include:

  • Forklift Fundamentals
  • Forklift Inspection
  • Forklift Load Handling
  • Forklift Safe Driving
  • Forklift Stability

How long does it take?

Operators with no previous forklift experience can expect to spend ~2 hours completing the course. Individuals with previous experience, however, typically finish the course in about 1 hour.

Do I have to pass an exam to get my certification?

Yes, after you have watched all of the training videos you will be able to take the final online exam. This exam can be taken unlimited amount of times, but in order to receive your certification you must pass with a score of 70% or better.

What happens after I pass exam?

After you successfully pass the exam, you will receive your Official Forklift Certification document. The certification will include your name, date, certification number & QR code your employer can use to authenticate the document.


If You Are an Employer: Explore the Essential OSHA Compliance Certification for Businesses in South Dakota

For organizations operating in South Dakota, it’s imperative to grasp the OSHA compliance certification requirements that pertain to forklift operators. South Dakota, a state known for its diverse economy and unique geography, places a high emphasis on workplace safety, including the operation of forklifts.

South Dakota’s Economic Landscape:

South Dakota boasts a distinctive economic profile, driven by key sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing, healthcare, and tourism. The state offers a thriving job market, with some of its most populous cities experiencing remarkable growth. Understanding and adhering to safety regulations, especially in forklift operation, is crucial to maintaining a safe and productive work environment.

OSHA Compliance in South Dakota:

In South Dakota, as in other states, forklift operators are required to comply with OSHA regulations. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 mandates that forklift operators complete certification every three years. This requirement is vital, regardless of the number of forklifts a company employs. Neglecting certification can result in substantial fines within the state.

South Dakota’s Flourishing Cities:

South Dakota is home to several thriving cities, with Sioux Falls, Rapid City, and Aberdeen being among the most populous. Each of these cities offers its own unique advantages, contributing to the state’s strong and diversified economy.

  • Sioux Falls: Known for its low unemployment rate and vibrant job market, Sioux Falls is a magnet for businesses, particularly in the financial services and healthcare sectors. The absence of state income tax and sales tax contributes to a lower cost of living, making it an attractive place for both businesses and employees.
  • Rapid City: Nestled in the Black Hills, Rapid City offers a blend of tourism and local industry. It’s famous for attractions such as Mount Rushmore, and its diversified economy includes healthcare, education, and manufacturing.
  • Aberdeen: Aberdeen’s economy is powered by agriculture and healthcare, offering a wealth of job opportunities in these sectors. Its strong sense of community and economic stability make it an appealing place to work and live.

Why Certification Matters in South Dakota:

Certification is a cornerstone of safety in South Dakota’s workplaces. Forklifts play a pivotal role in enhancing efficiency in warehouses and distribution centers, and their safe operation is a top priority. In a competitive environment like South Dakota’s dynamic economy, maintaining a certified forklift workforce is crucial.

Safety Tips for Forklift Operators:

Safety remains a top priority for forklift operators in South Dakota. Here are some essential safety tips:

  • Regularly inspect the forklift’s forks to ensure they are in good condition.
  • Always wear your seatbelt and maintain both hands on the steering wheel while driving.
  • Be vigilant for equipment malfunctions or spills before operating the forklift.
  • Adhere to all safety procedures and protocols to maintain a safe working environment.

Professional Development in South Dakota:

Professional development is a hallmark of success in any career, including forklift operation. Staying certified is a pivotal achievement in your professional journey, and it’s essential for both your career advancement and ensuring safety within the South Dakota workplace. As you live and work in this rewarding state, achieving and maintaining your forklift certification is an invaluable investment in your career and the well-being of your workplace.

Click here to learn more about our forklift certification programs.


Discover Forklift Operator Jobs in South Dakota

As of 2019, South Dakota witnessed a growing demand for forklift operators across various industries. With over 68,000 individuals employed in this role, the state has seen a surge in opportunities for forklift drivers. This is attributed to the diverse array of thriving industries within South Dakota, including construction, healthcare, manufacturing, and agriculture, among others. Many of these industries rely on competent forklift operators to facilitate their daily operations.

Upon obtaining your forklift certification in South Dakota, you are well-prepared to seek local job opportunities in your area. When applying for these positions, it’s highly recommended that you prominently feature your certification on your resume. Many South Dakota employers consider this certification as a significant factor in assessing applicants and determining the qualifications that best match their specific job requirements

Here are some major employers in South Dakota that utilize forklifts as an integral part of their operations:
  1. Walmart Distribution Centers: Walmart has multiple distribution centers across South Dakota, particularly in cities like Pierre and Rapid City. These centers rely on forklifts for efficient warehousing and distribution of goods.
  2. Food Processing Plants: South Dakota is home to several meat and food processing facilities, such as Smithfield Foods in Sioux Falls. These facilities heavily depend on forklifts for materials handling and production.
  3. Agricultural Co-ops: Agriculture is a significant industry in South Dakota. Cooperative organizations like Farmers Union and Farmers Elevator Co. often use forklifts for loading and unloading agricultural products.
  4. Warehousing and Logistics Companies: Various warehousing and logistics companies across the state, including those in cities like Sioux Falls and Aberdeen, employ forklifts to manage and move goods within their facilities.
  5. Manufacturing Plants: Many manufacturing plants throughout South Dakota, like Daktronics in Brookings, rely on forklifts for moving raw materials and finished products within their production processes.

These major employers rely on forklifts to enhance efficiency and productivity in their daily operations, emphasizing the importance of forklift certification and safety in the workplace.

Where can I submit my application?

In South Dakota, various local staffing agencies specialize in connecting individuals with employers seeking forklift drivers. Additionally, widely-used online platforms such as Indeed, Google, and LinkedIn are valuable resources for finding forklift operator job opportunities.

Is it possible to be hired without prior hands-on experience?

Certainly, it’s common for forklift job applicants to begin without prior hands-on experience. The exciting part is that once you’re hired, the employer takes on the responsibility of providing you with the hands-on training needed to excel in your role safely.

When does my employer need my certification?

Your employer may ask for your certification before or after you are hired. Once you’ve supplied the document, they can verify its authenticity by either scanning the QR code or reaching out to us using the certification number for verification.