Line Balancing and Skill Matrix Development in Garment Industry

Line Balancing and Skill Matrix Development in Garment Industry

Astuti Khan
Senior Sourcing Officer (Myntra Fashion Brands)
Myntra Jabong Pvt. Ltd.
Dept. of Fashion Technology,
National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT)


Line Balancing is leveling the workload across all processes in a cell or value stream to remove bottlenecks and excess capacity. A constraint slows the process down and results if waiting for downstream operations and excess capacity results in waiting and absorption of fixed costs.

skill matrix in garment industry

It is the allocation of sewing machine, according to style and design of the garments. It depends on what types of garments we have to produce. It is done to increasing productivity. In this article I will discuss line balancing and skill matrix in garment industry with different charts.


  1. Regular material flow.
  2. Maximum uses of manpower and machine capacity.
  3. Minimum process time and slack time.
  4. Minimizing workstation.
  5. Maximum output at the desired time.
  6. Reduce production cost.
Line Balancing
(Click on image for large size)

Old layout of Line:

Old layout of Line

Suggestions for improvement:

  • Systematic flow of work
  • Basket in the center with wheels below for easy movement of bundles
  • Allocation of tasks to operators, according to their skill set
  • Re-arranging machines to create a more balanced production line
  • Merging operations or elimination of unnecessary extra operations.

New proposed layout:

New proposed layout

skill matrix

This is the layout we proposed and it was implemented at 1 pm on 29/08/2019.

We weren’t able to implement the whole idea because 2 operators weren’t available for neck rib attachment. Because of that issue, the full effect of having 2 operators for time-taking operations wasn’t really achieved.

Even with just having a more streamlined layout, the production went up to 800, from an output of under 500 pieces per day.

Date Style Production
02.08.19 UMBRO 300
05.08.19 UMBRO 240
06.08.19 UMBRO 507
07.08.19 UMBRO 508
08.08.19 UMBRO 334
09.08.19 UMBRO 500
17.08.19 UMBRO 100
29.08.19 UMBRO 800
30.08.19 UMBRO 930

On the days with significantly less production (below 350 pieces), main reasons for less productivity were insufficient feeding or excessive absenteeism.

Otherwise the average production ranges between 400-500 pieces with 13-15 operators working on all days.

garment production graph

Ideally, if floaters are there to replace all absent operators and 1 more skilled operator is available for neck rib attachment, the final output should easily cross 1000 pieces, if not more. Also, if baskets with wheels are provided in the center for easy transfer of bundles, helpers won’t be required to transfer bundles as operators themselves could push their bundles ahead. This would also help in saving time and increase productivity significantly.

You may also like:

  1. Line Balancing in Apparel Production: Objectives, Importance & Limitations
  2. Line Balancing and Bottleneck in Garment Production Line
  3. Improving Productivity of Garment Industry with Line Balancing
  4. Module & Responsibility of Industrial Engineering Department for Apparel Production

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