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Graduate Production Jobs

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        Graduate Talent
        £30,000 per annum
        Added today
        AWD online
        Acocks Green & 39 more
        £33,595 per annum
        Added yesterday
        Cure Talent Ltd
        £25,000 - £30,000 per annum
        Added 2 days ago
        Acorn by Synergie
        £27,000 - £32,000 per annum
        Added 2 days ago
        Terry Parris Associates
        Added 2 days ago
        Added 3 days ago
        Isaac Gracie
        Added 5 days ago
        Expert Employment
        £35,000 - £38,000 per annum
        Added 5 days ago
        RGB Network
        £24,000 - £26,000 per annum
        Added 6 days ago
        Penguin Recruitment
        £23,000 - £25,000 per annum
        Added 7 days ago

        Helping you find a career in the production industry

        Roles in industrial production are all about how manufacturing businesses go about making their products. Manufacturing is a wide sector, covering FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods, i.e. toiletries or laundry detergents), food and drink, pharmaceutical products, as well as fridges, washing machines, cars and even ships.

        Production roles can focus on product design, manufacturing systems, quality management, or production management - supervising the whole manufacturing process. Essentially each of these areas is responsible for a different stage in the manufacturing process. While some roles may be more office-based, many roles in this industrial production will also involve spending a significant amount of time working with teams in factories and production facilities. Many roles in industrial production can be working in-house within manufacturing businesses or working in agencies or consultancies with a range of clients.

        Product designers and engineers will work at early stages in the process, working within multidisciplinary teams to bring a new product to life, using a variety of different design tools (including CAD - Computer-Aided Design tools) to bring a product from a concept to a manufacturing spec. Depending on the nature of the product, you may also spend time speaking to customers and clients to understand what elements of a new product might, or might not, appeal to them.

        Manufacturing systems engineers help design the manufacturing systems and processes in factories and assembly lines. A key element of these roles is to ensure that products can be made cost-effectively, efficiently and in the right volumes. In manufacturing systems engineer positions you will work with a number of different disciplines, from product design to marketing to sales, ensuring that the business's processes and systems are working in the right way for the business's commercial goals.

        Quality technicians and managers' roles involve designing and implementing systems and procedures to ensure that an organisation's products are being manufactured to the required standard. Roles can be quite specialised based on the exact sort of products an organisation is manufacturing, and can involve working with legal, compliance or marketing departments, alongside working with teams on-site in factories.

        Production managers will oversee the whole manufacturing process, ensuring that the manufacturing systems and processes are set up to produce the products to the right standards, in the right volumes and as efficiently as possible. Production managers will be involved in establishing the schedules for each stage in the manufacturing process, as well as making sure that the factory has the right staff and resources to manufacture products efficiently. You may also be involved in the product design phase, advising designers and engineers on the feasibility of manufacturing products.

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        Skills & interests required for a career in Production

        Across all specialisations attention to detail, systematic thinking and the ability to explain complex ideas and processes to non-specialists will be critical parts of your success. Technical skill-sets required will differ depending on the nature of the role:

        A product designer will need experience working with design tools and testing potential product designs.

        Manufacturing systems engineers will usually work with a number of different software tools, including CAD as well as process management software tools.

        Quality technicians will need to work with different software packages to create models to predict and improve the failures in the manufacturing process. While you may not need specific experience with a particular software package, it is essential that you are highly numerate and IT literate.

        Production managers will usually need some experience of (and interest in) creating organisational design models.

        Graduate schemes & other typical career progression routes in Production

        Many larger manufacturing organisations will hire graduates into production roles through graduate recruitment schemes, during which you might operate across a number of the different stages of the manufacturing process over the course of 2-3 years. Usually once you have completed the training programme you will be invited to specialise in a specific discipline.

        Larger organisations may have several layers of management in their manufacturing processes, from more day-to-day focused positions working more hands-on with manufacturing staff and sites, to more long-term strategic positions involved in planning investment decisions in new facilities or techniques. There are a range of professional qualifications you may be invited to study to broaden and deepen your range of skills in Production, for instance the Certificate in Operations Management. Product Designers and Engineers may work more closely with Research and Development scientists, in which case you may want to specialise in the more technical side of the job, or you may be required to work more closely with Marketing, Finance and Sales departments to get a better understanding of your customers' requirements and the business' priorities.

        You may want to consider taking additional business and design skills courses during your career through the Design Business Association or the Chartered Society of Designers. Typically progression will depend on the size of the organisation you work for, and if you are working in an agency or consultancy moving into senior design roles will likely involve greater responsibilities for client management and potentially selling consultancy services.

        Tips for getting into the field

        Speak to your careers advisor to discuss your interest in the field and also to see whether your university has any partnerships with particular organisations which might lead to work experience programmes or industrial placement years through Knowledge Transfer Partnerships.

        Many larger manufacturers will run summer internship programmes, or industrial placement years - these can be competitive to secure a place on, but highly rewarding and can often lead to a full-time job after you complete your studies.

        To work in most roles in production you will need to show an interest in the ways in which businesses go from a product concept to selling a manufactured product. There will be significant differences in processes used by businesses depending on what sort of product the factory is making - shampoo is made and sold quite differently to aeroplane engines! Think carefully about which areas you might be most passionate about before applying.

        How much can graduates earn in Production?

        Most roles in production and product design will begin at a trainee/junior level, with a salary of £20,000 to £25,000, although the larger graduate schemes may offer higher salaries of £25,000 to £30,000.

        Mid-level roles can be achieved after a few (3-5) years' experience, usually offering a range of salaries from £30,000 to £45/50,000. Senior design or production management roles will typically pay £60,000+ and will often entail significant amounts of budget and team management. At large manufacturers there is scope to earn significantly higher salaries later on in your career, depending on your area of specialisation.

        What qualifications do I need for a career in Production?

        Production roles may require academic qualifications (undergraduate or postgraduate degrees) in related fields (organisation design, business or management), while in certain sectors - particularly in pharmaceuticals or technology - you may want be required to have an engineering background.

        Larger manufacturers' graduate schemes can often be open to applicants without degrees in related fields, though you should always check the requirements before applying.

        Read more about the Production industry