Production Planner Job Description
A production planner is responsible for scheduling manufacturing operations. Included in a job description for a production planner will be the coordination of resources and employees in order to ensure this timeline is adhered to.
In a factory, the production planner is responsible for determining which items are manufactured and in what quantities based upon consumer demand forecasts.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities of a Production Planner
- Makes recommendations as to the amount of manpower needed to complete production goals, so that hiring or layoffs can occur as needed
- Develops a schedule for completing certain tasks so that goods will be available when needed
- Forecasts the future need of certain items in order to increase or decrease production levels accordingly
- Tracks the progress of goods as they are being manufactured to ensure they remain on schedule
- Updates interested parties as to how production is progressing
- Prepares reports detailing anticipated production goals
- Revises schedules as needed to accomplish certain benchmarks in the manufacturing process
- Performs time studies in order to determine how long certain tasks take
- Communicates with production supervisors and managers so that everyone will know what production goals need to be met
- Develops plans for streamlining processes so that operations may flow more smoothly
Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
- Has good time management skills
- Is able to accurately forecast future needs
- Understands the manufacturing process thoroughly, and has reasonable expectations as to what can be accomplished in a certain timeframe
- Is able to easily motivate others
- Has good problem solving skills, and can easily revise a plan when needed
- Takes responsibility for mistakes, and holds others accountable for theirs as well
- Is flexible and able to react to changes as needed
- Possess good math, English and writing skills
Education and Experience
No formal education is required in order to become a production planner. Instead, between two and five years of supervisory experience in a manufacturing environment is preferred. The experience should be fairly recent, as manufacturing procedures are constantly changing, and knowledge that was gained some time ago may no longer be relevant to the job at hand.
Production planners work in factories, where they are frequently exposed to loud noises and bright lights. They will spend a great deal of time walking and standing on hard surfaces. Depending on the facility, they may also be exposed to extreme changes in temperature as well. They typically work 40 hours a week, and usually have a set schedule that includes either day or evening shift on weekdays.
The salary of a production planner can be around $42,000 in most industries. This amounts to an average of around $20.19 per hour. The larger the manufacturing facility is, the more a production planner can expect to be paid. Likewise, work in facilities where production is highly technical in nature usually pays more than it does in factories that require only unskilled labor.