PRODUCTION ENGINEER

The industrial engineer is responsible for a manufacturing workshop. Strongly subject to the constraints of costs, quality, deadlines and respect for the environment and regulations, he supervises production lines and supervises one or more teams. He controls and coordinates the manufacturing processes, and must find solutions to improve the productivity of his unit.

These titles can be followed by an industrial activity: machining, shaping, extrusion, assembly, assembly, cables …

MAIN ACTIVITIES

Organization of a workshop and production lines

  •  Receive the technical specifications drawn up by the design office in conjunction with the client.
  • Determine the production objectives, the means (men, service providers, subcontractors, tools, machines, etc.) necessary to achieve them.
  • Propose adjustments to the industrial organization in order to optimize the production of the product in accordance with the order.
  • Develop, plan and coordinate the different phases of the production process.
  • Define the working methods (needs for raw materials, equipment, subcontracting parts, etc.).
  • Distribute the workload of the teams under his responsibility, by post or by machine, taking into account production constraints (costs, quality, deadlines).
  • Organize subcontracting, supervise the placing of orders.
  • Ensure the ramp-up of the production tool.

Follow-up of the good progress of the manufacturing

  • Implement the production program: development and testing of prototypes (pre-industrialization phase), supply of raw materials, parts and tools, production and assembly of manufactured parts, storage and delivery of finished products (logistics).
  • Ensure daily compliance with objectives, costs, deadlines, quality
  • Process and monitor customer and supplier incidents, prevent and monitor internal quality risks, help update the quality system.
  • Manage and control the use of equipment (measuring / testing instruments, production equipment).
  • Control the application of security procedures.
  • Control compliance with specifications by subcontractors and assess the results.
  • Follow the manufacturing, adapt it to the vagaries of production and order forecasts.
  • Ensure the delivery of orders in accordance with the specifications.
  • Contribute to product improvement.
  • Ensure or supervise controls, tests, trials.

Optimization of manufacturing processes and the production device

  •  Implement continuous improvement procedures for the industrial organization, tools and manufacturing processes.
  •  Intervene in maintenance actions (curative and preventive), find solutions in the event of major breakdowns and ensure the availability of equipment.
  •  Participate in the programming operations of PLCs or CAM systems in connection with industrial IT engineers (automation engineers).
  •  Provide technical advice in the manufacturing process of complex products, to reduce production times and cycles (reorganization, change of working methods …).
  • Collaborate with process method engineers to study the optimization of daily workshops (organization, adaptation of production lines, etc.).
  •  Participate in projects to modernize the production tool (adaptation to new products, ergonomics …).
  • Ensure technical and regulatory watch to integrate innovative technologies and processes and anticipate new standards.

Management of a production team

  • Animate and coordinate the activities of a production team : assistant, supervisors (team leaders), technicians (maintenance, quality, logistics, supply), production agents or operators, adjusters, forklift operators … 
  •  Evaluate and define recruitment needs in connection with HR services.
  • Manage the workforce (absences, leaves, rest, replacements, team shifts …).
  • Promote the development or recognition of the skills of the personnel under their responsibility : mobility, training, implementation of CQP (professional qualification certificate) or VAE (validation of acquired experience) … 
  • Raise staff awareness of quality, industrial and environmental security issues and monitor the application of related rules.

Activity management and reporting

  •  Ensure activity reporting (dashboards) to his hierarchy (resource assessment, breakdowns, scrap …).
  •  Compare and optimize productivity indicators (volumes produced, materials consumed, rate of waste, malfunctions …).
  • Track production and investment costs.
  •  Manage performance indicators.

POSSIBLE ACTIVITIES

The production engineer can take part in more transversal projects (implementation or improvement of an integrated management software, technical modification of workshops, adaptation of the manufacturing processes of new products, improvement of ergonomics or tools. ..).

It can intervene in the development of quotes for customer orders, the response to specific customer requests, estimate the cost of raw materials, logistics.

VARIABILITY OF ACTIVITIES

Depending on the size of the company and its organization, the production engineer is responsible for all of the products, a range or a stage in the manufacturing cycle.

Production workshop manager, production team leader : these job titles refer to executives working in a production workshop, production managers (monitoring indicators, production analysis, etc.) and local managers (in the field). 

Depending on the sector of activity, the job titles may vary. In the automotive industry or in metallurgy, the term workshop manager will be used more. In electronics, one will frequently find the title of production engineer.

The nature and volumes of products produced also condition the scope of its responsibilities. Depending on his level of experience, he is in charge of more or less complex products.

  •  In process industries in which raw materials undergo chemical and physical transformation, compliance with quality and industrial safety standards is essential. The production engineer works closely with QHSE activities (quality, hygiene, safety, environment).
  • In high-tech sectors (electrical, electronic, IT, digital), its missions include a significant share of innovation and technical monitoring, particularly in industrial IT and digital electronics.
  • In small structures, the function is often confused with that of production manager, more versatile. A field worker, very operational, he manages manufacturing (planning, organization, industrialization) and all related activities (methods and processes, quality, maintenance, logistics, supplies, purchases, etc.). He can manage a budget.
  • In some SMIs, he can assume the responsibilities of project manager and manage a portfolio of clients. He must then have a commercial culture.
  • In intermediate-sized and large structures, its tasks are more segmented. He often has the full charge of a workshop (manufacturing, packaging). Depending on the organization of the company, he then reports to the production manager who oversees the entire production of the site. The workshops are often called UAP (autonomous production units).

HIERARCHIC REATTACHMENT

  • Technical director
  • Production director
  • Responsible production
  • Site manager

CONTEXT AND FACTORS OF CHANGE IN THE BUSINESS

Given technological developments, the need for production managers will continue to be significant in all industrial sectors (including those of the metallurgical and mining industries).

The current crisis invites companies to reinvent themselves and innovate by relying on the break that constitutes the Internet. The era that will open will undoubtedly be that of the industrial Internet, machine-to-machine, Big Datas, etc. Companies are at the crossroads of two transformative revolutions: the machine (industrial revolution) and IT (digital revolution).

In these state-of-the-art industrial sites, the strategy is to develop new manufacturing techniques and produce more efficiently and responsibly. They therefore require very specialized and high-level skills for the years to come.

The digital revolution : industrial robotics, intelligent machines and the factory of the future :  

With the development of digital, the production engineer is increasingly led to work on collaborative platforms, which centralize all the tools related to the conduct of an industrial project, to data management in real time, the state of production. It is the connected factory in which machines, sites and production processes communicate and interact continuously with each other.

Currently developed, especially in large industrial groups (aeronautics, land transport, shipbuilding, food industry, etc. ), industrial robotics (also called ” cobotics “) is above all a response to difficult and painful tasks or with very low added value thanks to a collaborative robot. The goal is to develop more efficient environments to minimize time (sequencing, fire control …), the surface used and optimize ease and productivity. In the energy or space sector, “ featherweight ” robots are already used for surveillance missions (process recognition). However, significant needs in terms of robotization in many SMEs still exist in terms of specific applications (drilling / assembly), packaging, robotization of production lines.    

The production engineer will increasingly have to devote himself to controlling the industrial tool : 

Industrial control at the junction between the industrial tool and the operational field of production has greatly evolved in recent years in connection with information systems and has become very sophisticated in terms of automation. The controls concern the optimization of the operation of a production unit from the point of view of quality, productivity and environmental protection. With systems such as geolocation, the production engineer can already, from his smartphone or tablet, have a map view of the production tool.

The skills in industrial control are all the more sought after as they are strategic trades for the future of the industry.

Manufacturing in 3D printer printing : 

The production engineer can now have small, complex functional parts produced in the factory and in limited series. Additive manufacturing (production of a 3D model in successive layers) gradually replaces molding and manufacturing on a conventional line, limiting the machining steps.

Continuous improvement in productivity ( lean manufacturing ) :  

Inspired by the Toyota school, lean aims to optimize various parameters : number and time of production cycles, rejects, just-in-time delivery (just-in-time, few stocks) industrial ergonomics, maintenance, pull-through manufacturing. The production engineer must train his teams in these tools and methodologies which are not a managerial practice reserved for field managers but a corporate culture based on values. 

Cost control, economic performance and new markets : 

The stakes are high because, manufacturers are evolving in increasingly unstable markets. And it is thanks to in-depth knowledge of their activity and the behavior of their customers that manufacturers can remain competitive and set out to conquer new markets. Improved productivity is sought through permanent adaptation of the workshop organization and of the manufacturing tools and processes to market requirements. Optimizing the maintenance of the production tool allows it to reduce the risk of accidents and breakdowns (costly in financial and image terms).

The production engineer and environmental responsibility : 

The protection of health, the environment and the control of risks are an integral part of the activity of a production engineer. It will increasingly have to ensure compliance with regulations (eg REACH law and VOC directive on solvents), the implementation of prescribed processes under charters, fair or eco-solidarity labels (Max Havelaar… ), less consumers of water and energy.

Growing market globalization, technical and business partnerships : 

Increasingly, the production engineer may have to go abroad, work internationally, in particular to train, manage and transmit to local staff the company’s standards (quality, process, etc.). He can also work in multicultural teams (projects, coordination with service providers, etc.).  

PROFILE

Degrees required

  • Training level Bac +4 or 5 (general engineering schools and engineering schools by apprenticeship) with sometimes specialization according to the field of activity of the company (automotive, aeronautics, electronics …)
  •  Specialized Bac +4 or 5 training (master) (industrial engineering, robotics, automation, production management), if possible supplemented by management training
  •   Training level Bac +2/3 (DUT electrical engineering and industrial IT, BTS industrial control …)
  • The joint qualification certificate in metallurgy validates the capacities to exercise this profession, accessible by continuing education or by VAE.

Duration of experience

The post of production engineer can be entrusted to young people with higher education after significant internships (often as assistant to the production manager). It corresponds to a phase of acquisition then of mastery of a technical know-how. It provides fairly rapid access to a function of proximity manager.

The post of workshop manager requires relatively more experience (generally one to two years), but it remains accessible to young graduates.

These two positions can be held by non-managerial employees (technicians, supervisors) with solid experience (5 to 10 years).

REQUIRED SKILLS

Technical skills

  • Management and team leadership skills to meet production targets
  •  Mastery of specific techniques and processes implemented in the manufacture of products from the mechanical and metallurgical sectors
  •  Mastery of continuous productivity improvement techniques : lean manufacturing , Kaizen, Kanban, 6 Sigma, etc. 
  •  Proficiency in office software : macro Excel, Powerpoint, Access, MS Project in order to draw up forecast balance sheets 
  •  Good level in statistics applied to management
  •    Knowledge of the production environment, including support functions (quality, safety / environment, logistics, maintenance, etc.)
  • Knowledge in production : automation, connectivity, regulation, process control 
  • Mastery of industrial software : CAD (notably 3D), DAO, CFAO, CAPE, CMMS  
  •   Human resources management concepts to relay the HR manager
  •   Knowledge of rules and standards in terms of quality, environment, prevention, safety
  •      Knowledge of English at least to evolve in groups with an international dimension, establish contacts with foreign suppliers, use technical notices

Skills

  • Taste of the field, aptitude for coaching to motivate teams
  •   Organizational skills to manage daily manufacturing (management of external service providers, work planning, etc.)
  •  Rigor and discipline to comply with and enforce many procedures, particularly in terms of production process, quality, or safety
  •    Flexibility to adapt to restrictive schedules (on-call, shift schedules in 2×8, 3×8, 5×8)
  •  Dynamism, composure and reactivity to quickly face the unexpected of production : an industrial accident, a breakdown can have very serious consequences. 
  •  Pedagogy to train operators on machines and transmit knowledge
  •  Sense of teamwork and interpersonal skills to manage relationships with internal and external actors of the company

REMUNERATION

Young graduate : between 25 and 35 k € 

Young executive : between 35 and 40 k € 

Confirmed setting : between 45 and 55 k € 

OTHER TITLES

  • Workshop chief
  •  Production supervisor
  • Manufacturing line supervisor
  • Production team supervisor
  • Autonomous production unit manager
  • Manufacturing engineer
  • Engineer (with specialization in the field of activity of the company)