Organizations that manufacture a product require supervisors to direct the actions of employees in the production areas. The supervisor is responsible for ensuring that employees follow company policies and procedures for safety and in the production of goods. Some manufacturing employees can advance to a supervisor position with experience in a production environment.
The supervisor in a manufacturing organization directs the activities of employees engaged in production work. A manufacturing supervisor also ensures the safety of workers in the organization by setting safety policies for the department.
Manufacturing supervisors are responsible for the production schedule. This includes setting work schedules and hiring employees to meet production goals. The supervisor develops training schedules for new employees and evaluates the performance of workers. Work scheduling also includes placing employees in appropriate positions to increase productivity. Supervisors also maintain records for employees in the department such as attendance and performance evaluations.
Supervisors implement continuous improvement activities such as quality improvement teams to reduce scrap and increase productivity. A manufacturing supervisor also monitors the department budget and ensures that resources are allocated properly. Additionally, supervisors prepare production reports for upper management staff. Management may require reports on safety issues in the department, productivity and goals.
A supervisor must have leadership skills to direct employees toward production goals. Written and verbal communication skills are also are necessary for the successful manufacturing supervisor, as is a familiarity with office software. Equally important, manufacturing supervisors must be familiar with the methods of production used in the department including machinery.
Education and Qualifications
Employers may require a bachelor’s degree to work in a supervisory position, but some only require a high school education. Experience in a production or manufacturing environment is usually required for a supervisor role.
Manufacturing supervisors can expect to earn between $46,735 and $71,560 as of June 2010, according to the website PayScale. Supervisors work in a variety of manufacturing environments including pharmaceutical manufacturing, medical devices and electronics; salary often depends on the industry and the experience of the supervisor.