Operations managers in manufacturing lead production efforts for a variety of industries. As of 2015, the average salary of manufacturing managers is $92,000 per year, according to Indeed's job site.
As a manufacturing operations manager, you lead the manufacturing team by planning and directing their efforts according to the company's needs. Operations managers train workers, create workplace schedules and monitor the activities of employees. You also take responsibility for meeting production goals, ensuring that customers receive the products they were promised on time. This involves comparing labor availability and manufacturing capabilities with customer requirements, creating reasonable deadlines for both the customer and the manufacturer.
You manage the inventory of raw material needed to manufacture your company's product, ensuring enough is on hand to follow through on orders. Analyzing production numbers allows you to monitor the performance of workers and the manufacturing process as a whole. Using this data, you adjust manufacturing methods to increase the efficiency of the process. As operations manager, you verify the quality of the product and perform technical support and repairs when needed. Production duties may vary according to the type of product your company manufactures.
Requirements and Experience
The minimum education for manufacturing operations managers is a bachelor's degree in an engineering field related to the industry. Some employers prefer candidates with an MBA and require applicants to have 10 years of manufacturing experience that includes at least five years of managerial experience. In some cases, you work in other departments such as sales or marketing to get a better idea of the company as a whole before leading manufacturing. Obtaining certification for quality assurance from the American Society for Quality or production and inventory management certification from the Association for Operations Management shows employers your advanced knowledge and experience in managing manufacturing operations.
Environment and Outlook
You spend time working in both office settings and on the production floor. When visiting the manufacturing area, you expose yourself to production hazards, requiring safety equipment such as a helmet, protective clothing or goggles. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly half of operations managers for manufacturing work over 40 hours per week. The BLS predicts a decline in employment for this occupation between 2012 and 2022, with a loss of 4,100 jobs, or 2 percent of all operations managers during that decade.