Skills Courier Service Driver near Vancouver (BC)

Find out what skills you typically need to work as a courier service driver in Canada. These skills are applicable to all Delivery and courier service drivers (NOC 7514).


  • Operate and drive automobiles, vans and light trucks to pick up and deliver various items and products
  • Professionalism in customer service
  • Receive and relay information to central dispatch
  • Sell products over established routes
  • Assemble, install and set-up merchandise/products
  • Prepare, package and restock goods
  • Transport and handle dangerous goods
  • Load and unload goods
  • Use maps and other trip planning aids
  • Record trip information such as vehicle mileage, fuel costs and any problems
  • Pay and receive payments for goods
  • Perform pre-trip, en route and post-trip inspection and oversee all aspects of vehicle

Skills and knowledge

The following skills and knowledge are usually required in this occupation.

Essential skills

See how the 9 essential skills apply to this occupation. This section will be updated soon.

  • Read memos about work schedules and changes to delivery routes, dates and times. (1)
  • Read memos about policy changes or new products or memos giving instructions, such as changes in delivery routes. (2)
  • May read safety manuals about the operation of vehicles or manuals giving information on the transportation of dangerous goods. (3)
Document use
  • Read traffic and street signs and names and numbers on houses or businesses to make deliveries. (1)
  • Read the telephone book and street finder index to locate addresses and phone numbers. (1)
  • Read labels, tags and lists which identify the goods being delivered. (1)
  • Complete a Delivery Route Log to record arrival and departure times at each stop and how many packages were delivered or picked up. (1)
  • Complete a Vehicle Maintenance Sheet and safety check forms. (1)
  • Enter odometer readings on a mileage form. (1)
  • Read maps to find the location of a delivery. (2)
  • Read bills of lading, manifests, credit-card slips, delivery receipts and waybills (bills of handling). These may contain the names, addresses and signatures of clients, check boxes and tables for entering information. (2)
  • Read work schedules. (2)
  • Read rate schedules to determine the rate charged for a particular destination for packages of a particular weight. (2)
  • Complete a manifest report which lists the day's transactions, waybills and cash receipts. (2)
  • May scan the computer screen to enter or log information about an order. (2)
  • Use tariff tables to calculate the costs of shipping packages. (3)
  • Fill out accident reports, listing names and addresses of witnesses and describing road conditions. (3)
  • Enter names and addresses on waybills and note anything unusual about the delivery. (1)
  • Write reminders to themselves or make entries in their date books to remember deliveries. (1)
  • Write names and addresses given to them by the radio dispatcher. (1)
  • May leave notes on the door of residences, when the delivery cannot be made. (1)
  • Record information about each delivery, such as when the order left the store, when it was delivered and coupons used. (1)
  • Complete a variety of forms. (see "Document use") (2)
NumeracyMoney Math
  • Total the cash pickups. (1)
  • Calculate the charge for a delivery, including the relevant taxes, accept payment by cash, cheque or credit card and make change. (2)
  • Calculate the charge for a delivery, sometimes deducting a coupon. (2)
Scheduling, Budgeting & Accounting Math
  • Total receipts before giving them to their supervisor. (1)
  • May schedule their deliveries, either planning the sequence and timing of stops to complete the route by a certain time or determining the most efficient way to handle batches of deliveries, such as when delivering pizzas. (2)
Measurement and Calculation Math
  • May record mileage driven each day using odometer readings. (1)
  • May calculate the cubic weight of packages using a formula. (2)
Data Analysis Math
  • May compare the number of papers returned at each delivery location to the number delivered to adjust the number to leave next time. (1)
  • May monitor the number of items handled for a specific client each day and calculate the average number each month to determine if a volume discount applies. (2)
Numerical Estimation
  • May estimate the weight of packages. (1)
  • May estimate freight charges, when taking orders over the phone. (2)
  • May estimate the time required for a particular delivery, considering distance, traffic conditions and the number of packages to be loaded and unloaded. (2)
Oral communication
  • Receive messages which co-workers have left on answering machines and pagers. (1)
  • Interact briefly with customers when making deliveries to exchange pleasantries, obtain information, explain the transaction or to discuss service times and prices. (1)
  • Talk with the dispatcher and other drivers during the day, on the two-way radio or telephone, to co-ordinate pickups and deliveries. (1)
  • Discuss routes, customers and work procedures with co-workers. (1)
  • Take direction from supervisors and report to them any problems with customer payments, delays or work schedules. (2)
  • May discuss vehicle problems and repairs with mechanics. (2)
ThinkingProblem Solving
  • Sometimes find their delivery schedules are interrupted or delayed. They reorganize their schedules to compensate. (1)
  • Are sometimes unable to find an address. They phone the customer or contact the dispatcher for directions and may have to adjust their route, changing the sequence of deliveries for greater efficiency. (1)
  • May find a delivery does not include all the requested items. They either locate extras or replacements or offer customers credit or an adjustment in their account. (2)
  • May find that shipments have been delayed or mixed up, for reasons beyond their control. They try to trace missing shipments by examining relevant paperwork, contacting the shipment originator and calling the customer for more information. (2)
  • Sometimes experience mechanical problems or vehicle break-downs. They arrange for towing and repairs and reschedule their deliveries. (2)
Decision Making
  • When an item is not ready for delivery, decide whether to wait for it or to leave a message for another driver to pick it up. (1)
  • Decide what commodities to transport, based on whether items meet transportation and safety requirements. (1)
  • Decide how many deliveries they can make and whether to take extra work. (2)
  • Decide which routes and streets to take, based on traffic, the number and location of deliveries and their familiarity with the route. (2)
Critical Thinking

Critical Thinking information was not collected for this profile.

Job Task Planning and Organizing

Delivery and courier service drivers perform routine, repetitive tasks. They are assigned destinations to deliver items to throughout the day. Some are assigned routes to follow and given a prearranged schedule. Others organize their routes and schedules themselves for maximum efficiency, adjusting this plan in response to traffic conditions and "rush" orders. (2)

Significant Use of Memory
  • Remember which routes are the most efficient at different times of the day.
  • Remember the location of streets and the names and addresses of clients.
  • Remember when to make specific pickups or deliveries they were assigned for that day.
Finding Information
  • Find out suitable delivery or pickup times by calling the customer. (1)
  • Make telephone calls or check paperwork to find out about the status of a particular shipment or item in a shipment, when a shipment is missing or incomplete. (1)
  • Locate addresses by checking them in telephone books, looking them up on maps or by asking other drivers, the dispatcher or the customer. (2)
Digital technology
  • Use other computer applications. For example, they may use computer operated-equipment such as computer pagers which display calls from the dispatcher. (1)
  • They may keep trip logs. (2)
  • They may use a computer to check airline arrival times. (2)
Additional informationOther Essential Skills:

Working with Others

Delivery and courier service drivers mainly work alone, though they may work with a partner or helper, for example, when handling heavy loads. They may work as a member of a team, for example, to sort items for delivery.

Continuous Learning

Delivery and courier service drivers may learn new routes and addresses. They may take driving courses or learn new safety procedures.

Labour Market Information Survey
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