Pre-Production Meeting: Key of Production in Apparel Industry

Pre-Production Meeting: Key of Production in Apparel Industry

Amarnath Sharma
MBA, NIFT-Bangalore, India
Email: sharmaamarnath1973@gmail.com

 

INTRODUCTION:
After confirmation of order, factory does the internal R&D or engineering for raw material, method of work execution, kind of machinery to be used and skill grade to be required to execute the work. Summary of these exercises, discussed with all the related executives of that particular work in a meeting, is called the pre-production meeting in apparel industry.

pre-production meeting in apparel industry
Fig: Pre-production meeting in apparel industry

Some of the buying team do the technical as well as order execution-planning meeting with vendor, this also known as PP meeting. Factory representative should summarize important point of this meeting for factory’s internal PP meeting.

PURPOSE OF PRE-PRODUCTION METTING:
There is tremendous benefit of pre-production meeting in apparel industry. Factory that does not do the pp meeting, chances of mistakes in production are more. Employees do not get aware of the entire technical requirements and it has been observed that most of the time the sample also do not represent the actual requirement. Very often sample pass by buying technician are with some extra technical comments and factory’s core level worker does not get aware of that.

Following is the example statistics of 20 styles 10 with pp meeting and 10 without pp meeting:

example of Pre-Production Meeting

One may see that out of 10 styles without pp meeting, there are seven styles (70%) having mistakes in production. On the other hand 10 styles, which were started for, bulk production after pp meeting having mistakes in only one style (10%) in production. Production loss due to incomplete information and inconvenience is not considered.

METHOD:
If buying team do the pp meeting with factory merchant/ manager or technician than it is better to do the internal pp meeting of factory after buying team meeting for incorporation of discussed points in internal pp meeting. After completion of all the internal R&D and engineering the authorized department should decide a time. Normally ‘industrial engineering department’ take care of R&D / engineering and responsible for conducting internal pre-production meeting with co-ordination of planning department. Agenda should be made and informed to all the production HOD and other required executives, who would be participating in meeting. All the technical points should be discussed and minutes would be made. Final summarized document should make available to all the key executives and displayed at various sections of production department.

PREPARATION BEFORE PP MEETING:
Detailed engineering of the style should be done. Material testing (fabric & accessories), method engineering, kind of machine required and skill grade required for executing every operation. Industrial engineering department should compile all these work in document form in prescribed format for PP meeting.

WHO SHOULD PARTICIPATE?
All the section head of production as follows:

  1. Style merchandiser,
  2. Fabric representative,
  3. Accessories representative,
  4. Cutting head,
  5. Sewing in charge / supervisor,
  6. Machine mechanic (maintenance),
  7. Finishing head,
  8. Packing head,
  9. Embroidery head,
  10. Bead / sequins head,
  11. Production manager,
  12. Quality manager,
  13. Quality executives from all sections,
  14. Planning head and
  15. IED head.

THINGS TO BE DISCUSSED:
This may categorize in following heads: –

1. Common information: Order number, order quantity, customer name etc.

2. Fabric (shell and lining):

  1. Shrinkage of fabrics?
  2. Side and center salvage of fabric?
  3. Color fastness of fabric?
  4. If denim fabric then blanket making and lot making?
  5. Required width of fabric?
  6. Yarn count and quality of fabric?
  7. Fabric color lots and quantity in each lot for ratio wise cutting in each lot.
  8. Any other quality issue i.e. bowing, weave defects, patta, twisting in knits etc.

3. Accessories: 

  1. Kind of accessories required for the style? For example- sewing thread, label, button etc
  2. Their quality authentication? For example- Tex and ticket of sewing thread, color fastness of label, strength and color of button etc
  3. Placement position on garment and method of placing?

4. Cutting: 

  1. Maximum number of plies of fabric to be cut in one layer?
  2. Kind of cutting machine and type of blade to be used?
  3. Consumption / average of fabric?
  4. Lay plan, Lay mark, size plan and daily cut quantity plan and infrastructure required?
  5. Number of cut parts and name?
  6. Parts to be relayed and cut?
  7. Parts to be cut by band knife?
  8. Parts to be cut by dies and type of die?
  9. Drilling locations and needle type?
  10. Parts to be fused and fusing brand as well as dwell time, pressure and temperature of fusing machine?
  11. Notches position and instructions?
  12. Stickering and bundling method and instructions?

5. Stitching:

  1. Sewing thread details: – Type? Ticket? Tex? Etc.
  2. Sewing needle details?
  3. Stitches per inch (SPI) for single needle and over lock?
  4. Seam description of every part of garments?
  5. Workmanship discussion, garment operation breakdown, motion and time study, line layout, pre shrunk measurement, pucker free sewing method, label placement, machine and sewing attachment to be used etc.
  6. Line sample making by line supervisor.
  7. Product safety i.e. button, snap, eyelet etc. mock making and testing? Nickel in metal parts should be avoided.
  8. Quality checkpoint in sewing line.
  9. Special instructions (if any).

6. Embroidery:

  1. Quality of thread, backup material?
  2. Computer embroidery or manual embroidery?
  3. To be done on cut parts or semi stitch or on complete garments?
  4. Approval of design and workmanship?

7. Sequins / beads:

  1. Kind of sequins, bead and thread required and their quality?
  2. Manually done or through machine?
  3. Bead locking distance and thread end?

8. Wet processing:

  1. Special wash and garment dye method and approval of color lot after wet processing?
  2. Smelling should be checked.

9. Finishing:

  1. Method of iron? Material properties? Care for shiny areas?
  2. Quality inspection points and method of inspection?
  3. Final presentation of apparel?

10. Packing: 

  1. Tag quality and placement?
  2. Folding method and size?
  3. Poly bag and recycle sign?
  4. Barcode and other sticker?
  5. Ratio, corrugated board/ boxes size and quality, weight of boxes, protective padding, sealing tape, strapping, box marking sticker print matter and layout?

FORMATS:
Simple format may develop for each section describing all the technical points. For example fabric section format is shown as below: –

Order nr. ___      Order quantity ______   Fabric name ______  Customer name __

Pre-Production Meeting table

CONCLUSION:
There is no hard and fast method guideline for PP meeting. This is only for supplying information. Every factory may have different kind of product and their requirement may vary from the above information. Last but not the least, factory should must conduct the PP meeting to share important information among all the key employees, who may influence the quality and productivity of the product.

Articles published by the same author:

  1. Impact of Covid-19 on Apparel Manufacturing Business
  2. Button and Buttonhole: Types, Techniques and Machines
  3. Methods to Control Fabric/Piece Goods Quality in Textile Industry
  4. Different Types of Testing and Approval Required for Fabric to Garment Manufacturing Process
  5. Denim Wet Processing: Importance of Blanket Wash
  6. Interlining in Garments – Complete Know How

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