You enjoy working in an industrial setting, and you like the idea of serving in a supervisory role. So, could a job as a quality manager be right for you? Here’s an overview of the day-to-day duties of this position.
What Does a Quality Manager Do?
Quality managers, also known as quality assurance managers, ensure products meet required standards. They may work in factories that produce food, automobiles, toys, electronic devices, clothes or other items. Quality managers check for both quality and consistency. In other words, goods produced on Monday should meet the same established requirements as those produced on Friday. To achieve this goal, quality managers inspect products, develop and apply quality control tests, train workers and resolve problems.
What Are the Day-to-Day Roles?
As with many management jobs, daily tasks vary. For example, if everything is running smoothly, the quality manager may spend the day investigating a new production technique. However, if there’s an issue, they could end up troubleshooting for their entire shift. On any given day, they may:
- Choose raw materials and suppliers
- Evaluate the quality of incoming materials
- Select the tools to use during production
- Recruit and train production supervisors
- Communicate expectations to staff
- Observe the production process
- Catch and correct errors
- Inspect final products
- Calculate the cost of mistakes
- Resolve quality control problems
- Examine the efficiency and effectiveness of current production methods
- Research ways to improve processes
- Devise evaluation methods
- Run tests
- Collect, analyze and summarize data
- Document results
- Write and/or present reports
What Skills Do Quality Managers Need?
To be successful, quality managers should have a combination of technical and soft skills. They must have a thorough understanding of their industry as well as the ability to work well with others. Top qualifications include:
- Knowledge of production methods and products
- Familiarity with federal, state and local regulations
- Data analysis skills
- Experience with applicable software programs
- Critical thinking
- Strong communication (written, verbal and listening)
- Leadership skills
- Attention to detail
- An ability to handle stressful situations
How Do You Become a Quality Manager?
At a minimum, quality managers must have a bachelor’s degree, and some have a master’s degree. Most study a field related to their work combined with statistics, quality assurance and/or management. For example, a quality manager employed in the food industry may have a B.S. in Food Science & Technology along with an MBA. On-the-job experience is essential, as quality managers need to have a real-life understanding of production processes. Professional certifications, such as those offered by the American Society for Quality, also are useful.
Would You Like to Learn More About Different Manufacturing Positions?
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