Working at a manufacturing job requires stamina and the ability to pay attention to details. The type of work varies from employer to employer and also depends on the type of goods manufactured. Today’s production worker usually has some skilled training either from vocational schools or from on-the-job training. Experience, skills and additional training may eventually lead to supervisory or management positions.
Most factories require their employees to have a high school education or a GED. Some factories that require employees to use specialized equipment, such as machining tools, require employees have vocational school training in the equipment’s operation. In some instances, management may require two years of training at a community college with specialized training on machines, along with the computer skills needed to operate today’s high-tech manufacturing equipment. In order to work as a production worker, the job candidate must have good communication skills. He must be able to read written English directions. Some jobs require that the employee be able to carry out basic mathematical functions.
Assembly work requires the employee to be able to keep up with production line machinery. Quality control starts with the line worker, so he must have the ability to focus on getting the job done right. As assembly processes change, the worker may help with equipment changeovers. If a forklift is in operation in the plant, the worker receives safety training in its operation whether its operation is part of his daily duties or not. He also must be knowledgeable of standard operating procedures for job safety. If the plant operates on multiple shifts, the worker must communicate with his counterparts on any changes they should be aware of. In many instances an assembly worker must know how to do several jobs. Not only does this relieve boredom from doing repetitive work, but it also enables plant managers to fill in gaps when employees are on sick leave or vacation. Depending on the type of work, the worker may also have computer-generated reports, such as daily production logs, that he must complete.
The production worker may have a variety of specialized tasks assigned to him. If he’s been doing the job for a while, he may be responsible for on-the-job training for new employees. He may have the task of ordering raw materials for his department. Repairing equipment on the line may also be part of the job assignment, especially if the production worker has the knowledge and expertise to do so.
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