Hot Jobs How To: Industrial Production Manager

Two plant workers

Based on your feedback, we're launching weekly articles to provide more detailed information on securing some of best jobs out there for veterans, along with a list of four things you need to secure these jobs. This week's hot job: Industrial Production Manager


Ensuring that a production plant is running as efficiently as possible by overseeing every aspect of its operation is busy, stressful, and chaotic. An industrial production manager oversees the operation of entire production plants – they need to be comfortable not just directing people, but overseeing heavy equipment. General managerial skills are a must, but to be truly effective in this position an individual must have knowledge of raw materials, production processes, high level math, specialized machines and tools, engineering and scientific concepts, and more.


While a bachelor’s degree is almost always a requirement, there are roughly two different paths towards becoming an industrial production manager. Earning a bachelor’s in business administration or industrial engineering will get you farther faster, but you’ll still need to get roughly two to five years of experience behind you before tackling job applications. On the other hand, it is possible for production workers with years of experience to take classes in management and secure the industrial production manager position. It’s important to note that as production plants become increasingly sophisticated,

Marketable Skills

While degrees are a staple, gaining industry experience is the best way to market yourself – you’ll not only develop your understanding of the job, but will make new contacts along the way. Job-seekers fresh out of college or without too much experience should consider working in variety of positions within production in order to gain the breadth of experience necessary before gunning for the industrial production manager position. It is possible, however, that companies will take candidates with little or no experience and spend a number of months familiarizing them with the production line, company policies, and specific job requirements.


Aside from connections made during school and through normal business networking, there are two certification programs for future industrial production managers that will expose them to new potential connections. The Association for Operations Management can bestow a credential in production and inventory management, and the American Society for Quality provides credentials in quality control. Both of these programs offer classes, conferences, and up-to-date information.

Helpful Resources

If you're ready to dig into the job search, check out industrial production manager listings on

The Association for Operations Management

The American Society for Quality

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