What Does an Industrial Supervisor Do?

Jennifer Leigh
Jennifer Leigh
Man with hands on his hips
Man with hands on his hips

Industrial supervisors manage production, materials and equipment, shipping, and employees that are part of an industrial process. There are industrial supervisors in any industry where production takes place, who work to ensure that the output of production meets the demand for the products. Another aspect of the job involves maintaining production budgets as well as working with production chains, problem solving during the production process and keeping records. An industrial supervisor can have a variety of education and training to prepare for this career.

An industrial supervisor may have an educational background ranging from technical school to a doctorate degree, depending on the position. Large companies usually require more education from their supervisors than smaller companies do. Many companies require a four-year bachelor's degree as a minimum for this position. The salary of an industrial supervisor will often increase with continued education. Industrial supervisors work both in the production area of the company and in an office setting, where they perform office-related tasks such as budgeting and making schedules.

On-the-job training is sometimes possible for industrial supervisors, particularly if they have had experience in industry and production in the past. Employees are sometimes able to work into this position if they are particularly motivated and ambitious. People who do this often began as workers on the production line.

Part of the responsibilities of an industrial supervisor is to make sure that production is completed in an efficient manner. This often helps to lower the overall cost of production for the organization. The industrial supervisor also works with other supervisors in the company to make sure that policy is being implemented effectively. He or she might be in charge of one area of supervision, such as employees, or in charge of more than one area relating to the production process. This can depend on the specific industry and organization that the individual works for.

Those in an industrial supervisor position need to be able to think quickly and solve problems with production as soon as they develop. This requires an analytical mind and the ability to work rapidly to find a solution to the problem. They are often responsible for keeping records for various aspects of the production process from ordering materials to tracking employee work. Industrial supervisors should ideally have a solid understanding of how the production chain works in their company so they can work to find ways to make it more efficient.

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