What Does a Process Supervisor Do?

Nick Mann

A career as a process supervisor involves overseeing the day-to-day operations of a facility such as a manufacturing plant. These individuals are responsible for keeping the work environment safe, meeting product quotas and ensuring a smooth work flow. In some cases, it's possible to acquire this job with just a high school diploma and industry experience. Other times, candidates for this position will be required to have a bachelor's degree in manufacturing engineering or a related field. Typical job duties of a process supervisor include ensuring compliance with safety regulations and company guidelines, overseeing machine maintenance, evaluating employee performance, tracking production output and creating improvement plans.

A process supervisor monitors employee punctuality.
A process supervisor monitors employee punctuality.

One of the most important parts of this job is ensuring compliance with safety regulations and company guidelines. Since many manufacturing plants contain heavy machinery and create products for public use, it's essential for a process supervisor to maintain safety in all areas. This means that he is responsible for keeping employees safe from hazards and producing goods that are safe for users. To accomplish this, he might perform routine checks of a facility for hazards and examine products for safety.

A process supervisor tracks production output.
A process supervisor tracks production output.

Overseeing machinery maintenance is a large part of a process supervisor's responsibility for ensuring safety. For example, he might periodically inspect various machines to make sure they have been cleaned, the parts have been oiled and they are operating normally. Consequently, this position requires an individual to have an in-depth understanding of every machine in the facility.

Evaluating employee performance is another duty that often falls to a process supervisor. Typically, this means monitoring employee punctuality, production and overall job performance. It's up to a process supervisor to make sure each employee shows up on time, stays on task and meets product quotas. When a worker demonstrates good job performance, a supervisor might reward the worker. Consistently poor job performance, on the other hand, could result in disciplinary measures.

Along with this, the process supervisor will need to continually track production output. For example, he might maintain records of how many products are created on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis. This information is important for understanding a company's level of efficiency and making necessary changes.

In addition, he will sometimes be responsible for creating improvement plans for his facility. Since he has expertise in manufacturing, a process supervisor might figure out ways to increase efficiency, motivate workers and reduce mistakes. This aspect of the job requires someone with creativity and the ability to implement practical changes.

Process supervisors oversee production, safety, work flow and other elements of a manufacturing plant.
Process supervisors oversee production, safety, work flow and other elements of a manufacturing plant.

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