Manufacturing Manager (Degree)

Occupation Overview

Overseeing manufacturing processes to ensure that performance output meets customer expectations

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in manufacturing sectors including food and drink, consumer goods, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, automotive and aeronautical.

The broad purpose of the occupation is oversee the manufacturing process to make sure that performance output meets customer expectations and is cost-effective. This will include planning manufacturing schedules, monitoring operations and quality assurance. Manufacturing Managers may work for organisations of all sizes, overseeing an entire manufacturing plant or a specific area of production; producing one or multiple products, products of high or low value, bespoke items or items produced at scale. Production may be within a fast-paced environment, for example production of sandwiches with a short shelf life. Products may be sold to consumers in the UK and/or exported abroad. The manufacturing industry is increasing becoming more automated, making it an innovative environment to work in. 
Manufacturing managers will spend time in the production area and an office. Manufacturing managers may be required to work shifts over a 24-hour basis, weekend shifts and be on call to deal with emergencies.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with manufacturing personnel and managers from other departments, for example, commercial, marketing, research and design, technical, quality, human resources and engineering. They may also interact with customers. 

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for management of manufacturing personnel, budgets, manufacturing equipment and the manufacturing facility – quantity and value of which will vary depending on the size and type of manufacturing. They are ultimately responsible for the manufacture of safe goods in a safe environment. They will typically report to a senior manager, for example the Operations Director or General Manager. 

Manufacturing managers will complete core duties and duties relating to one option specific to the manufacturing sector.

Typical job titles include:

Factory Manager, Operations Manager, Production Manager, Manufacturing Manager, Business Unit Manager and Site General Manager

Core Occupation duties



Duty 1 Pre-production planning, including staffing for multi-disciplinary teams, raw materials and equipment to meet manufacturing goals

Criteria for measuring performance

Meeting manufacturing performance indicators: output, quality, timescales, cost, environmental


K1 K2 K3 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K13 K15 K23 K25

S1 S2 S3 S4 S16 S20

B1 B4 B5

Duty 2 Managing production to ensure achievement of the overall operating and financial targets ensuring timely onward distribution to customers

Criteria for measuring performance

Meeting key performance indicators: output, quality ,timescales, cost, environmental


K1 K2 K3 K6 K7 K8 K10 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K19 K21 K25

S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S10 S11 S15 S16 S17 S19 S20 S22

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 3 Overseeing post-production quality checks and monitoring results

Criteria for measuring performance

Consistent quality of product

Health & Safety compliance

Environmental compliance


K1 K3 K6 K7 K16 K22 K24 K25

S2 S3 S4 S5 S7 S10 S11 S19 S21 S22


Duty 4 Providing reports to senior managers

Criteria for measuring performance

Correct, complete and clear information

Timely reports


K9 K12

S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S12 S13 S14

B1 B2 B3 B5

Duty 5 Hiring and training of core employees and agency workers

Criteria for measuring performance

Sufficient competent personnel


K1 K10

S5 S7 S8 S10

B1 B2 B3

Duty 6 Monitoring workers to ensure they meet performance and safety requirements

Criteria for measuring performance

Meeting performance indicators

Compliance with Health & Safety


K1 K3 K6 K7 K10

S2 S3 S5 S8 S10 S19 S22

B1 B2 B3

Duty 7 Reviewing production costs to ensure that gross margin percentage is maintained

Criteria for measuring performance

Meeting financial performance indicators


K1 K2 K8 K9 K12 K13 K14 K23

S2 S3 S4 S5 S7 S12 S15 S16

B1 B2 B5

Duty 8 Supporting commercial/procurement team in negotiations with customers and suppliers

Criteria for measuring performance

Effective relationships

Evidence based negotiations


K1 K2 K3 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K16 K19 K23 K25

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 9 Ensuring that Health and Safety (H&S) is managed effectively in their area of responsibility, by means of internal audits, toolkits, safe systems of work, risk assessments and support from managers responsible for H&S

Criteria for measuring performance

Health & Safety compliance

Positive Health & Safety culture

Low levels of accidents


K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K20 K21 K22 K24 K25

S2 S3 S4 S5 S7 S8 S10 S11 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S21 S22

B1 B3

Duty 10 Ensuring that environmental policy and procedures are implemented

Criteria for measuring performance

Environmental compliance

Positive environmental culture

Re-use, re-cycling of waste maximised


K5 K6 K7 K10 K13 K14 K15 K17 K21

S2 S3 S4 S5 S7 S8 S10 S11 S15 S16 S17

B1 B3 B5

Duty 11 Asset management; planning preventative maintenance and providing a business case for capital expenditure

Criteria for measuring performance

Fit for duty assets

Low levels of reactive maintenance

Business case - evidenced based


K4 K5 K6 K7 K9 K10 K12 K13 K14 K18 K20 K21

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S7 S12 S13 S14 S15

B1 B2 B3 B5

Duty 12 Liaising and working in partnership with Union representatives

Criteria for measuring performance

Constructive relationships


K1 K6 K7 K10 K13

S2 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S14

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Option Duties

Food & drink duties



Duty 13 Ensure hygienic design of food manufacturing machinery and premises, in conjunction with engineers and food technologists

Criteria for measuring performance

Food safety compliance

Collaborative working


K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K9 K10 K12 K13 K14 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21

S2 S5 S6 S7 S8 S10 S11 S15 S16 S19 S22

B1 B2 B3 B5

Duty 14 F&D. Ensuring food safety standards are maintained during manufacture to meet customer and regulatory requirements

Criteria for measuring performance

Food safety compliance


K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K10 K13 K14 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K24 K25

S2 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S10 S11 S16 S19 S21 S22

B1 B2 B3 B5

Duty 15 Monitoring cleaning operations to maintain hygiene standards within food manufacturing facility

Criteria for measuring performance

Food hygiene compliance


K3 K6 K7 K10 K18 K21

S5 S6 S7 S8 S10 S11 S22

B1 B2 B3

Duty 16 Leading third party food safety audits, for example food standards agency, retailer, British Retail Consortium (BRC)

Criteria for measuring performance

Constructive relationships

Audit compliance


K1 K3 K5 K6 K7 K10 K12 K16 K17 K20 K21 K22 K25

S2 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S10 S11 S16 S17 S18 S22

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 17 Developing and agreeing a project plan with the Planning Manager on acceptance of customer order; responding to seasonal needs and shelf life requirements

Criteria for measuring performance

Meeting production performance indicators


K2 K8 K9 K10 K12 K13 K23 K25

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S8 S14 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 18 Creating and maintaining a positive food safety culture with consumer safety focus

Criteria for measuring performance

Compliance with food safety policy and procedures


K3 K6 K7 K10 K13 K14 K16 K17 K18 K20 K21 K22 K24 K25

S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S10 S11 S15 S18 S19 S21 S22

B1 B2 B3 B5

Duty 19 Participating in quality checks including taste panels

Criteria for measuring performance

Correct analysis


K3 K6 K7 K16 K19 K24

S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S10 S19 S21 S22


S1: Identifying, forecasting, planning and scheduling resource requirements 

S2: Identifying data requirements; data analysis and interpretation 

S3: Using information technology 

S4: Reporting, for example manufacturing performance data 

S5: Communicating using different techniques, for example verbal, written, visual 

S6: Building and sustaining collaborative relationships to influence internal and external stakeholders 

S7: Presenting information, for example in staff briefings, customer meetings, management meetings 

S8: Managing people, for example recruiting, leading, coaching and motivating a team 

S9: Partnership working with local and/or regional union representation 

S10: Driving compliance with legal, customer and product standards on site 

S11: Devising, implementing and maintaining health & safety and environmental standards to achieve a harm free culture 

S12: Producing budget proposals; negotiating budgets with senior managers 

S13: Planning site based projects, for example for new capital investment, construction on site, new product lines and new equipment 

S14: Managing change 

S15: Conducting Continuous Improvement techniques within manufacturing environment 

S16: Problem solving/trouble shooting within manufacturing environment 

S17: Crisis management; agreeing, leading and implementing a site based disaster recovery plan 

S18: Responding to third party audits; managing relationships with audit personnel 

S19: F&D. Analysing food safety data, for example cooking/chilling temperatures, metal detection checks, storage and segregation 

S20: F&D. Responsive production planning to adjust to customer orders 

S21: F&D. Organoleptic testing of food and drink products 

S22: F&D. Promoting food safety culture 


K1: Product and Employment Legislation – including Equal Opportunities, Employment Rights Act, Modern Slavery, Competition Law, Bribery and Corruption 

K2: Product Supply Chain – the relationship between the supplier and customer; how to accurately forecast and schedule product demand; the impact of fraud and how traceability systems can be used to identify criminal activity 

K3: Quality Assurance – Total Quality Management, how product safety and product safety management systems are used to meet legal requirements and codes of practice to produce safe products of the required specification 

K4: Principles of Processing Controls and Factory Design – construction of factories including segregation, drainage, construction of walls and floors and utilisation of equipment and its impact on process control; linear workflow 

K5: Principles of Engineering – the impact of machinery design on safety, compliance and routing of services and work in progress; use of automation and its impact on resource and profitability 

K6: Health & Safety – Health & Safety at Work Act, health and safety risks and risk assessment practices, Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH), Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) 

K7: Environmental – environmental controls, Safe Disposal of Waste regulations, recycling, emissions (noise and smell) 

K8: Markets – domestic and international dimensions which impact on the manufacture of goods, for example exchange rates, border controls, movement of goods 

K9: Business and Financial Awareness – organisation ‘big picture’; how key functions interact; key business systems, performance data, financial statements, principles of costing and budgeting 

K10: Managing People and Change – leadership and management tools, including delegation, motivation, union consultation and negotiation, communication, persuading and influencing, change management, time management and leadership skills 

K11: Customer Relationship Management – tools and techniques, including product management techniques, customer requirements/value perception, customer segmentation, customer insights, complaint management in order to achieve customer excellence and ensure adherence to customer/industry standards 

K12: Critical Thinking and Analysis – how to research, evaluate and present business information; utilising statistical/analytical skills to interpret primary/complex data which will include a diverse range from overall equipment efficiency and financial key performance indicators to customer complaints 

K13: Problem solving techniques – for example mind mapping, root cause analysis, six thinking hats 

K14: Continuous Improvement (CI) techniques – 6 Sigma, LEAN, Kaizen 

K15: Crisis Management and Continuity Planning – how to lead and manage site incidents 

K16: Management Information Systems – knowledge of management information systems to store and record data, present information and identify trends 

K17: F&D. Food Safety – allergen management and labelling; food safety standards: Food Safety Act, Animal Welfare Standards, European Food Regulations, Food Hygiene England Regulations; contamination and cross contamination of food by physical, chemical, micro-biological and allergenic materials and substances 

K18: F&D. Environment – food waste reduction, recycling, safe water source and disposal 

K19: F&D. Principles of Processing Controls and Factory Design – hygienic design of food manufacturing machinery and premises 

K20: F&D. Food processing techniques – for example thermal processing, chilling, canning, irradiation 

K21: F&D. Maintenance in food manufacturing environment – requirements including food grade oils, captive tools 

K22: F&D. Safe cleaning in a food manufacturing environment – separate storage of cleaning materials, cleaning in place procedures 

K23: F&D. Third party food safety audits – for example Food Standards Agency, retailer, British Retail Consortium (BRC); underpinning standards, when and how they are conducted 

K24: F&D. Food planning considerations and implications – including seasonal needs, shelf life requirements, cancellations, promotions, consumer trends, healthy eating 

K25: F&D. Organoleptic quality testing – five senses to check quality of product: smell, sight, taste, hearing, texture; customer specifications 

K26: F&D. Food supply chain – supplier assurance and integrity of raw materials: origin of raw materials; food fraud and raw materials vulnerability 


B1: Ownership of work: decisive; effectively balances short term requirements with long term objectives to achieve goals; puts the customer at the heart of the decision making process to achieve ‘win-win’ commercial deals; plans and prioritises effectively 

B2: Integrity and respect: listens to others and seeks to build understanding; embraces the diversity of colleagues and makes complex issues easy for others to understand 

B3: Influence and persuasion: inspires others to achieve business goals; adapts language and communication medium to effectively win others over; proactively communicates clearly, concisely and on a timely basis; effectively influences key decision makers 

B4: Responsiveness to change: flexible to changing demands; resilient under pressure 

B5: Innovation: demonstrates curiosity to foster new ways of thinking and working; seeks out opportunities to drive forward change and improvements for the business 


English & Maths

Apprentices without level 2 English and maths will need to achieve this level prior to taking the End-Point Assessment. For those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement, the apprenticeship’s English and maths minimum requirement is Entry Level 3. A British Sign Language (BSL) qualification is an alternative to the English qualification for those whose primary language is BSL.

Other mandatory qualifications

Manufacturing manager


6 (integrated degree)

Additional details

Occupational Level:


Duration (months):



This standard will be reviewed after three years.

Originally published on, this information has been re-used under the terms of the Open Government Licence.


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