The Manufacturing sector in India is experiencing a dramatic changeover. This sector has seen an aggressive advancement of Industrial technology and infrastructure over the past few years. The launch of Make in India campaign signals the roll out of manufacturing in India, but ahead of it we have to prepare the battle of skilled workforce.

Around 500 million Indians are under-20 and, thus, will be of working age in the next 20 years, signifying a need for the creation of about a million new jobs each month to provide them gainful employment.

Whereas, less than 10% of the workforce is skilled. India has largely unskilled workforce. These statistics could lead to some of the most dramatic variations in the human facets of manufacturing since the Industrial Revolution.

Perhaps, the most imperative in manufacturing success is Team Work which incorporates Managerial staff, clerical staff and Workmen. Selection of workforce is an essential task. The Top management looks to HR as a catalyst to recognize the root level crisis encountered by the workforce and focus on building a vibrant work culture which is the need of the hour for manufacturing success.

Considering a human perspective in India, Manufacturing is still not the trump card for students to take up as a career. When a Graduate Engineer joins a manufacturing sector, he/she is attracted towards the process, technology and machines. But as they get absorbed into the daily operations, working in multiple shifts and untidy atmosphere we observe the enthusiasm factor falls below their potential and they plan for an immediate shift towards a white collar job or higher education presuming to obtain a white collar job.

A manufacturing team leader has to undertake a radical reassessment of their future leadership and workforce demands. While recruiting fresh talent it is important to consider what competencies and skill they will need over the span of 5-10 years and understand the management pipeline to develop success profiles. Apart from this, considering the physical aspects, need for the job, family background are the key tools for hiring decisions in Manufacturing.

Similarly, for workmen, the perceptions over a manufacturing job changes over a period of time developing a downward trend in their productivity. This leads to absenteeism and regular change of machine operators. To overcome this inherent obstacle in manufacturing we have to try and make the workplace attractive using methods like Kaizen, 5s, TQM. The root cause to all these issues is the vacuum created due to dearth of knowledge and skill in workers. The task of filling this gap has to happen throughout the year.

I strongly recommend to absorb mediocre academic background people who are the best selection for manufacturing operations. We do not recruit the workmen team for R&D but we need them for operating machines at specified ratings and procedures. We can have R&D team with higher academic performance as a support function for the workers.

Manufacturing being the critical part of an organization fails to garner attention from the top management. Therefore, it is necessary for the top management to recognize their potential and giving them due importance by aligning the manufacturing leaders with mainstream business strategies. This helps in getting the finest performance from them and their firm belief for the organization gives higher productivity and great quality products.

In my Organization, most of the senior executives have been escalated from department level and very few admissions are done at senior positions. Hence, the technical competence of our team is very high and therefore we are able to produce the best quality worsted fabrics in the country.

“It is very important to retain old team members as their understanding over the product and quality is very high. In manufacturing few decisions are made only over experience and not by statistics or instincts.”

-Harish Chatterjee, VP- Manufacturing