Career Development

What Does a Production Worker Do?

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

Production workers are the people who make our world go round. They’re responsible for producing the goods and services that we all rely on every day. Without them, we wouldn’t have cars to drive, clothes to wear, or phones to use.

Production Worker Job Duties

Production workers have a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Continuously monitoring equipment for malfunctions and taking appropriate action to prevent accidents
  • Performing basic maintenance tasks such as oiling machinery or changing light bulbs
  • Operating machines that cut, mold, or shape materials such as plastics, rubber, textiles, or metals
  • Participating in training programs designed to teach new employees proper safety procedures and techniques
  • Inspecting materials to identify defects or problems with quality before they reach customers
  • Performing routine cleaning tasks such as sweeping floors or emptying waste bins
  • Operating machinery such as forklifts or cranes to move materials
  • Organizing work schedules and providing employee feedback to supervisors
  • Maintaining accurate records of materials used, recycled materials received, and other statistics about recycling operations

Production Worker Salary & Outlook

Production workers’ salaries vary depending on their level of education and experience, the company size and geographic location. They may also earn additional compensation in the form of overtime.

  • Median Annual Salary: $31,500 ($15.14/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $47,000 ($22.6/hour)

The employment of production workers is expected to grow at an average rate over the next decade.

Employment growth will be driven by manufacturing establishments that produce durable goods, such as automobiles and appliances. However, automation and productivity improvements are expected to limit the number of jobs for production workers in some industries.

Related: In-Depth Production Worker Salary Guide

Production Worker Job Requirements

A production worker may be required to have the following:

Education: Most production worker positions require only a high school diploma or GED. However, some employers may prefer an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. Those with a degree in a field such as business, computer science or engineering may have an advantage when applying for positions.

Training & Experience: Production workers typically receive on-the-job training. This training may include learning the specific processes and procedures for the company, as well as safety and health procedures. Production workers who have previous experience in a similar role may transfer their skills to a new company.

Certifications & Licenses: Production workers do not require any certifications to earn their position. However, some companies offer employee training programs that are offered through professional organizations, which production workers may choose to pursue to gain additional knowledge about their responsibilities and further their career advancement opportunities.

Production Worker Skills

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

Communication: Communication is another important skill for production workers. You may be required to communicate with your coworkers and managers to relay information or answer questions. You may also be required to communicate with customers to answer questions about products or to explain any issues that may arise.

Organization: Organization skills can help you be more efficient in your work and complete tasks on time. You can use organization skills to keep track of your work schedule, checklists and production quotas. Organization skills can also help you keep your work area clean and safe.

Teamwork: Teamwork skills can help you work more efficiently and productively. Production workers often work in teams, so it’s important to be able to work well with others. You can use teamwork skills to communicate with your coworkers, share information and complete tasks together.

Physical stamina: Physical stamina refers to your ability to sustain prolonged periods of physical activity. Production workers often need to lift heavy objects, stand for long periods of time and move quickly to complete their tasks. Having good physical stamina can help you complete your work more efficiently and reduce the risk of injury.

Attention to detail: Having good attention to detail can help you perform your duties accurately and efficiently. It’s important to check your work to ensure you complete tasks correctly. This can help you save time and resources and ensure you produce quality products. You can also use attention to detail to check for defects in products and identify any issues that may affect the quality of the product.

Production Worker Work Environment

Production workers typically work in factories or other industrial settings. They may be required to stand for long periods of time and to perform repetitive tasks. The work can be physically demanding, and the noise and pace of the work environment can be stressful. Production workers typically work 40 hours per week, but they may be required to work overtime during busy periods.

Production Worker Trends

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

The Growth of Automation

The growth of automation is a trend that is quickly changing the workforce as we know it. As machines become more sophisticated, they are able to do tasks that were once only possible for humans. This has led to an increased use of automation in many industries, including manufacturing.

As a result, production workers will need to learn how to work with machines in order to remain competitive. They will also need to be familiar with the latest technologies and how to use them effectively.

More Use of Robots in Manufacturing

The use of robots in manufacturing is a trend that is growing rapidly as companies look for ways to reduce costs and improve efficiency.

Production workers who are able to work with robots will be in high demand, as they will be needed to set up and maintain these machines. Additionally, workers will need to be able to program robots to perform specific tasks, which requires a deep understanding of computer programming.

A Shift Towards Leaner Operations

Lean manufacturing is a business philosophy that focuses on reducing waste and increasing efficiency. In recent years, this trend has led to a shift towards leaner operations in all areas of business, including manufacturing.

As lean manufacturing becomes more popular, production workers will need to learn new skills in order to keep up with changes in the workplace. These include inventory management, quality control, and process optimization.

How to Become a Production Worker

There are many different paths you can take to become a production worker. You could start off as an apprentice, learning the skills needed to work in a factory. Or you could get a job in a warehouse, where you would learn how to move goods from one place to another. No matter which path you choose, it’s important to be willing to learn new things and to be able to work hard.

Related: How to Write a Production Worker Resume

Advancement Prospects

There are many opportunities for production workers to advance their careers. Some production workers may become supervisors or managers of production teams. Others may move into quality control or become industrial engineers. With experience, some production workers may become sales representatives or technical service representatives for their company. Some production workers may choose to start their own business.

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