A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A... PRODUCTION MANAGER

It is Tuesday morning, changes are on the horizon. Today is the day “the wall” (a physical representation of our production schedule) moves another week ahead. How many jobs will be scheduled this week? Just look at the wall and count the cards. Is it 8, 14 or even 21? This week there are only 9 jobs posted. That must mean they are large jobs. Nevertheless, I’m looking forward to it.

Let’s get started on one of those cards posted on the wall, Residence Inn, Boulder, CO – 1088 widths. Preparing production tickets for manufacturing is much like putting together a puzzle, you’ve got to gather all of the right pieces and fit them together. This time it’s a ripplefold job. Are the right deductions taken? Check. Is the fabric running the right direction? Check. Does the fabric have a repeat? We are about to find out. I go out onto the floor to take a look. It’s important to look at it in person, especially when it’s a fabric I’m not as comfortable with. Looking at this one, it’s clear that it has a vertical repeat of 7.5”, so that will need to be put into the production tickets as well.

On my way back to my desk I’m stopped by Maria, one of the line supervisors about a project almost at the end of production. She needs clarification on the pin setting for a pinch pleat job. I remember telling her to place them higher but I should verify with the PM. I go to find Katherine and on the way am stopped by Lexi, she has a question about wall to wall deductions inside a cornice. I’m able to provide a quick answer and explanation. Responses have become automatic. Katherine is able to confirm that pin setting and I pass it on to Maria. Now I can finally make it back to my desk and pick up where I’ve left off.

Equipped with the knowledge of the vertical repeat, all the puzzle pieces are now collected. I’ve got my corners and my side pieces. It’s time to finish putting it together. I enter all the information into QCdrapes (our software system to create drapery reports and tickets). I go thru a series of checks, taking time to do some of the math manually in order to assure something hasn’t gone wrong. Are the number of ripplefold carriers correct? Calculations, Answer, Check. Is the number of carriers matching to the drape that was just created? Calculations, Answer, Check. A final review of the tickets is ready to be turned in for production. Drape reports are printed. Hardware reports are printed. Last but not least, are the top treatments ready? Check. One puzzle down, it’s time for another.