As an Export Clerk, you play a vital role in ensuring that shipments of Scotch whisky, from Scotland to a wide range of international market, are delivered on time and in compliance with all relevant regulations You will need to be experienced and knowledgeable about customs regulations, international shipping procedures and the managing and coordinating export shipments, including the preparation of export documentation, tax and customs documents and the liaison with national and international suppliers and agents.
Main duties and responsibilities
As an Export Clerk works you will be responsible for arranging the shipment of Scotch Whisky to a global market. You will receive, monitor, and process daily freight movements and ensure the correct paperwork is in place for shipments. The role can be an excellent starting point for a career within shipping and logistics.
- Preparation and processing of export documentation, such as preparing export declarations, certificates of origin, invoices, packing lists, bills of lading, cargo receipts, customs clearance, and other documents.
- Requesting and comparing price quotes from shipping companies.
- Coordinating with overseas customs agents, freight forwarders and carriers to arrange the transportation of goods, organise route assignments, track shipments and update customers on delivery status.
- Work with international distributors, agents, and suppliers to resolve any shipping or customs issues.
- Calculating tariffs and duties on transported goods based upon the export quantities / number of shipping containers.
- Obtaining information from clients and ensuring that declarations are made to customs in accordance with HMRC.
- Communicate with internal departments, such as production and logistics, to ensure that orders are fulfilled on time and in accordance with customer requirements.
- Maintain accurate records of all export transactions and ensure compliance with relevant regulations and laws.
- Provide excellent customer service to ensure customer satisfaction and retention.
- Keep up to date with changes in international trade regulations and advise management on any potential impacts on the company's export activities.
Export clerks typically work in an office environment and may occasionally need to visit warehouses, shipping ports, or other locations related to export operations. The job may require occasional overtime or weekend work to meet deadlines or accommodate different time zones.
The salary for an export clerk in the Scotch whisky industry can vary depending on the level of experience and location, but typically ranges from £25,000 to £35,000 per year.
An export clerk in the Scotch whisky industry can progress to a senior export coordinator or manager role, which involves overseeing a team of export clerks and managing the entire export operation for a company. Alternatively, they may transition to other areas of supply chain management, such as logistics or procurement.
Skills and experience
To be successful as an Export Clerk in the Scotch Whisky industry you must have a strong understanding of export regulations and procedures, excellent attention to detail, communication and interpersonal skills, strong time-management and multi-tasking abilities, computer literacy, language skills, and a bachelor's degree in a relevant field.
Typical skills and experience required include:
- An understanding of global supply chain and logistics, including the rules, regulations and procedures governing the export of goods from Scotland to international markets, advantages and disadvantages of various transportation methods, security requirements, inventory management and order processing, etc.
- Strong research skills (locating and evaluating international trade opportunities, analysing data, etc.)
- Coordination of export shipments with various customers and suppliers that include, distribution, order management, supply planning, and freight forwarders to ensure on time and in full shipments.
- Attention to detail. You will need to understand export documentation, customs procedures, and international shipping and air freight practices. Documentation must be completed accurately and in a timely manner to avoid delays and penalties.
- Ability to communicate effectively with customers, freight forwarders, customs officials, with excellent written and verbal communication skills and the ability to build relationships with stakeholders.
- Ability to work closely with other departments, including production, logistics, and finance, to ensure that orders are fulfilled, and customer needs are met.
- Excellent customer service and negotiation skills.
- Strong time-management skills with the ability to work under pressure whilst managing multiple shipments simultaneously and prioritising competing tasks effectively within tight deadlines.
- Strong problem-solving skills. You will need to solve problems that arise while negotiating the flow of goods across borders— such as delays in deliveries or issues with customs.
- Preparation of packages for special and/or urgent pick-up and delivery by parcel delivery services.
- Detail oriented, with excellent data entry and numeracy skills and proficient in Microsoft Office, especially excel and word. Willingness and ability to learn and use shipping software and to generate export documents from systems such as SAP.
- Being the administrative liaison with others internally and outside the organisation regarding issues related to purchasing, facilities, and operations.
- Fluency in English is essential for an Export Clerk, and knowledge of at least one other language is highly desirable.
- While not mandatory, knowledge of the Scotch Whisky industry is a plus. It shows a potential employer that you are familiar with the product, market, and distribution channels.
The role of an Export Clerk is critical to ensure the successful export of Scotch Whisky to international markets. The role requires a wide range of skills and offers excellent opportunities for career progression within the industry.
- A bachelor’s degree in business, logistics, or a related field is typically required. Some companies may also require equivalent experience in export operations.
- 2+ years of experience in export operations, preferably in the food and beverage industry
- Knowledge of export regulations and customs procedures.
- Proficiency in Microsoft Office and experience with shipping software.
- Fluency in English and knowledge of at least one other language is highly desirable.
- Familiarity with the Scotch whisky industry and its products is a plus.