Three Resume Tips to Land a Leadership Role in Manufacturing

As innovation continues to transform the manufacturing industry, more companies are in need of the right people to help lead the charge and overcome modern challenges.

Following in the footsteps of e-commerce giants like Amazon, more manufacturing companies are eagerly pursuing opportunities to expand supply chains on a global scale, increase inventories and jumpstart the entire manufacturing process, while also trying to drive down costs and maintain competitiveness.

While today’s companies continue to embrace improvement efforts through utilization of Six Sigma and lean manufacturing practices, the key to success is finding and keeping good leaders — from engineering production line management to the C-suite — who can achieve results and drive culture.

Recruiters at Lucas Group know firsthand the necessary traits and job titles manufacturers are seeking now when hiring top talent. Before reaching for the next rung in the ladder, be sure to apply these three strategies to your resume to land an interview.

List How You’ve Made a Valuable Impact

In the past year, Lucas Group has seen a spike in requests for candidates who can help streamline our clients’ supply chains and distribution processes. Companies are eager for solutions to get products to the customer or consumer more efficiently and with a faster speed of delivery.

For this reason, it’s imperative to not only include any relevant technical experience such as Six Sigma and lean manufacturing on your resume, but also to highlight how you’ve applied these practices to make a valuable impact.

How does this impact translate to paper? List any milestones you have accomplished, even if they are small, that improved overall productivity of the plant. Creating a strong manufacturing resume isn’t really about including certain buzzwords, but rather including bullet points with actionable items. For example, if you took a plant from seven production workers to 17 during the last 18 months and added three production lines which increased inventories by 12 percent, then list those numbers.

If you’re going to be an operational leader or hold any operational manufacturing position, you’re going to need to know how to help the company save money and time, reduce waste and improve the process. If you have taken any classes to help with these types of process improvements, then absolutely include those as well.

Show Your Leadership Skills

Whether it’s in procurement, engineering or logistics, great leaders in manufacturing can come in different forms. While the responsibilities of each role may vary, what they all have in common at the leadership level is equally as important to companies when making a hiring decision.

A strong manufacturing resume details how an employee has contributed to growing teams and building a core culture where respect and collaboration are valued.  A healthy culture feeds into a process improvement agenda. Our clients at Lucas Group want leaders who can demonstrate their ability to grow and guide teams, especially to overcome any obstacles or objections. On any given day, manufacturing can face all sorts of obstacles, from broken down lines to environmental issues to power outages.

As a leader of a plant or a multi-site plant, you need to show you can think quickly on your feet to navigate a team through tough times.  You need to be both proactive and reactive in order to be the best plant leader. This ability isn’t only for the benefit of your group, but for the product line and the overall company process. This mindset marks the kind of leader companies are looking for today, even if you started at the ground level.

Highlight Your Recent Accomplishments

In some of the talent searches I’ve worked on throughout the last year, I’ve heard feedback from clients like, “This candidate seems like a great person and definitely has years of experience, but they didn’t really highlight any key accomplishments as of late,” or, “I’m worried they have been there, done that…Do they want to do it all again—and can they?”

In other words, your resume should show that you have been doing something beyond sitting back in the office, kicking your feet up and just making sure nothing blows up.

In today’s competitive market, candidates can’t rely on accomplishments from 20 years ago to impress an employer. A strong manufacturing resume should be current with career highlights from recent years that illustrate you did more for a company than just show up.

In an interview, a candidate will have to continue to sell themselves regardless of how good their resume appears. However, using these three strategies to craft your resume can improve the chances you will land that interview and ultimately help you make that next career step on the manufacturing ladder.

Recruiters at Lucas Group know firsthand the necessary traits and job titles manufacturers are seeking now when hiring top talent. Before reaching for the next rung in the ladder, be sure to apply these three strategies to your resume to land an interview.


The content & opinions in this article are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of ManufacturingTomorrow.


Article Published By: ManufacturingTomorrow, “Three Resume Tips to Land a Leadership Role in Manufacturing”

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About Charlie Wilgus
Charlie Wilgus is the Founder and General Manager of the Manufacturing & Supply Chain Executive Search Division at Lucas Group, North America’s premier executive search firm. With more than 18 years of experience, Wilgus leads a team of more than 50 recruiters across the country while continuing to recruit and consult with clients to strategically enhance their executive management teams. Focused on upper-management through senior executive placement in Supply Chain, Manufacturing Operations, Logistics and Engineering across all industry lines, Wilgus has earned the coveted role of trusted consultant for each of his clients with a particular focus within the consumer goods and food manufacturing arena.