Production controllers are responsible for managing staff and activities in the manufacturing environment. It is their job to make sure production lines run smoothly and efficiently. They may also be called Production Manager or Manufacturing Manager.
Day to day activities
The role will vary depending on the industry sector but as a general rule, production controllers will be expected to plan production targets and budgets with customers, managers and the head of production. They will make sure there are the specialist staff, engineers, machines and materials available to meet the deadlines and they will monitor the production process to keep things on track.
This is one area of engineering and manufacturing that can be entered in a number of different ways. Management trainees, management apprentices and graduates can move into this role, as can those with an engineering background. A technical, engineering, scientific or mathematical background or aptitude will be an advantage.
Skills and attributes
Production controllers will be expected to have good project management, maths and IT skills. They will be problem solvers and excellent communicators. They will need to demonstrate that they can work well with other staff at all levels and plan and organise both people and processes. There is a clear need to be able to work under pressure and to deadlines.
There is good opportunity in this field to progress from assistant production manager or controller to production controller and on to head of production. Salaries vary widely according to the sector but there is excellent career progression and potential to move into other leadership roles from this position of responsibility.
The job of production controller is ideal for someone who thrives on deadlines, planning and project management.