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Hot Job – Director of Manufacturing

A Director of Manufacturing is accountable for all of the manufacturing operations in a facility. They must make certain production is meeting necessary goals, deadlines, and quality standards, as well as staying within a designated budget. To excel in this position, you must have strong leadership skills and adequately engage and encourage employees to reach common goals. This director typically reports to the top manufacturing executive in the entire organization.

Typical Job Duties

A Director of Manufacturing creates production plans and determines best practices for sustaining high manufacturing standards. This person must drive lean strategies and oversee operations to make certain products comply with established quality and regulatory standards. This position involves the recommendation and creation of manufacturing policies and programs that guide the company in its competitive position and profitability.

A manufacturing director also oversees both department supervisors and staff members to accomplish the various goals of manufacturing plans, in keeping with established manufacturing and safety practices. They will manage seven direct and up to 150 employees across manufacturing, engineering, quality, purchasing, inventory and logistics. They will act as a link between department managers and executives, working to keep lines of communications open, informing managers and employees of decisions, policy changes and any issues that may affect them.

The person in this position is also responsible for seeking, suggesting and implementing policies to enhance productivity, while lowering cost, minimizing waste and gathering valuable information. Manufacturing directors also direct the development, roll-out, and maintenance of manufacturing standards.

Job duties also include hiring, developing high-performance teams and evaluating staff as well as building future successors. These duties may involve taking remedial actions as necessary, as outlined by company policy and all legal regulations.

Typical Requirements

The job of manufacturing director requires a significant amount of experience, typically between 10 to 15 years, preferably in a leadership role. This position requires a bachelor’s degree in engineering, physics or a field related to the specific manufacturing industry. Frequently, applicants with an MBA take preference over those without the degree.

The ideal applicant will have demonstrated experience in manufacturing systems and practices, such as leading site-wide lean deployment. Lean Six Sigma certification is a plus.  Applicants should also have strong leadership ability, with a track record of developing both employees and overall team performance.

They should be high-energy, team-oriented and goal-oriented, with strong communication and problem-solving abilities. Manufacturing directors ought to be at ease with making important choices in high-pressure situations, through the use of critical thinking and analysis. They should have a previous P&L responsibility and the ability to drive lean strategies in the operation. This job also calls for a lot of interaction with people, so manufacturing directors should be good communicators who can lead meetings and build positive one-on-one relationships.

Career Outlook

A Director of Manufacturing will enjoy a base salary of $175,000 to $225,000 with bonus and long term incentives.  According to data from the federal Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the median salary for a manufacturing director is around $100,000 annually. However, there is a large, six-figure gap between those in the 10th percentile for pay rate and those in the 9th percentile. Job prospects for this profession are projected to remain steady through 2026.

Let Us Connect You to Opportunities in Manufacturing

At ZDA, we regularly connect ambitious professionals to a wide range of career opportunities in manufacturing and other sectors. If you are currently looking for career assistance. Please contact us today to find out how we can support your career success.


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