Career Development

What Does a Production Associate Do?

Find out what a production associate does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as a production associate.

Production associates are the people who make your favorite movies, TV shows, and commercials possible. They’re responsible for ensuring that everything is set up properly before filming begins, they help with lighting and sound during filming, and they clean up after filming has ended.

Production associates may also be called upon to assist with other tasks related to production, such as moving equipment or props around on set, providing information about locations or sets to cast and crew, etc.

Production Associate Job Duties

A production associate typically has a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Operating machines such as lathes, drill presses, and grinders to create components and finished products
  • Staying up to date on industry trends by attending trade shows, conferences, and seminars
  • Maintaining inventory levels by ordering materials from suppliers or manufacturers
  • Following safety procedures to protect themselves and others from injury
  • Inspecting finished products for defects and identifying potential improvements in production methods
  • Completing paperwork including purchase orders, shipping manifests, and employee time cards
  • Performing basic maintenance on machines to ensure they are running smoothly
  • Organizing and maintaining inventory of materials needed for production processes
  • Following standard operating procedures (SOPs) to ensure consistent production

Production Associate Salary & Outlook

The salary of a production associate can vary depending on their level of experience, the size of the company they work for, and the location of the job.

  • Median Annual Salary: $36,000 ($17.31/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $54,500 ($26.2/hour)

The employment of production associates is expected to grow slower than average over the next decade.

Production workers will be needed in many industries, such as manufacturing and retail trade, to produce and distribute the products that these industries sell. However, automation and productivity improvements are expected to limit the need for some production workers.

Related: In-Depth Production Associate Salary Guide

Production Associate Job Requirements

A production associate may have the following qualifications:

Education: Most employers require a high school diploma or GED for entry-level production associate positions. Some employers may prefer an associate’s completion of a technical or vocational program.

Training & Experience: Production associates typically receive on-the-job training from their new employer. This training may include learning the specific software and equipment the company uses, as well as the workflow and procedures. Production associates may also receive training in safety procedures and first aid.

Certifications & Licenses: It is generally a good idea for production associates to obtain certifications to improve their chances of finding a job and increasing their earning potential.

Production Associate Skills

Production associates need the following skills in order to be successful:

Communication: Communication skills are also important in this role. You may be required to communicate with other employees, suppliers and customers. You may also be required to communicate information to other departments. For example, if you notice a product is out of stock, you may be required to communicate that information to the sales department.

Attention to detail: Attention to detail is another important skill for production associates. You may be responsible for recording production data, entering data into a computer system or performing other tasks that require accuracy. You may also be responsible for ensuring that the production line is operating correctly, so attention to detail is important for this role.

Organization: Organization skills can help you complete tasks on time and ensure you have the resources you need to complete a job. For example, you may be responsible for keeping track of the company’s inventory and making sure you have enough products to fulfill customer orders. Organization skills can also help you keep track of your own tasks and responsibilities.

Teamwork: Teamwork skills can help you work with your colleagues to complete tasks and meet production goals. You can use teamwork skills to communicate with your coworkers, share information and help each other complete tasks. You can also use teamwork skills to work with your supervisors to resolve issues and improve your work performance.

Flexibility: Flexibility is the ability to adapt to changing circumstances. As a production associate, you may be asked to perform a variety of tasks, so it’s important to be flexible and willing to change your routine. For example, if you’re working in the warehouse and a manager asks you to help with a delivery, you should be able to adapt to the change and complete the task.

Production Associate Work Environment

Production associates work in factories, where they operate machines to create or assemble products. The work is often repetitive and can be physically demanding. Production associates typically work in teams and must follow safety guidelines to protect themselves and others from injuries. They typically work 40 hours per week, but overtime may be required during busy periods. Some production associates may be required to work night or weekend shifts.

Production Associate Trends

Here are three trends influencing how production associates work. Production associates will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

The Need for More Technical Skills

As businesses become more reliant on technology, the need for employees with technical skills has increased. This is especially true in the manufacturing industry, where companies are looking for workers who can help them keep up with the latest advances in technology.

Production associates can capitalize on this trend by becoming more familiar with the latest technologies and how they can be used in the manufacturing process. This will allow them to stay ahead of the competition and provide valuable insight to their employers.

The Importance of Continuous Learning

Continuous learning is an important trend that production associates should be aware of. In today’s economy, it is essential for employees to constantly be learning new skills and developing their knowledge base.

By continuously learning new things, production associates can ensure that they are always prepared for the challenges that come with any job. They can also set themselves apart from other candidates and make themselves more attractive to potential employers.

More Collaboration Between Departments

In recent years, there has been a shift towards greater collaboration between departments in many businesses. This is due to the fact that cross-functional teams often produce better results than those made up of individuals from the same department.

As a production associate, you can take advantage of this trend by developing strong communication and teamwork skills. By working together with people from different departments, you can create a more efficient and productive team.

How to Become a Production Associate

A career as a production associate can be a great way to get your foot in the door of the film and television industry. As a production associate, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about all aspects of filmmaking, from pre-production to post-production. You’ll also gain experience working with different departments within a production company, which will help you develop a well-rounded understanding of the filmmaking process.

To become a production associate, you’ll need to have a strong work ethic and be able to handle a variety of tasks simultaneously. You should also be comfortable working long hours and under pressure. It’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest technology used in filmmaking, so make sure to read industry blogs and attend workshops and training sessions.

Related: How to Write a Production Associate Resume

Advancement Prospects

Production associates typically start out in entry-level positions and advance to higher-level positions as they gain experience. Some may advance to supervisory or managerial positions, while others may move into related occupations.

Those who are interested in management may advance to supervisory or managerial positions, such as production manager, operations manager, or plant manager. Those who want to stay in production but do not want to manage may move into technical positions, such as process engineer or quality control engineer. Some production associates may become independent consultants.

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