How Many Shirts One Can Make per Machine per Day? (Based on Productivity Survey)

Are you a shirt manufacturer? Or are you a Production Manager of a shirt manufacturing factory? If yes, then this is a must-read article for you.

You might be thinking of what should be the machine productivity and what the maximum productivity level can be reached. This study results will give you a broad idea of how other factories are doing. How many pieces they are making per day?

Shirt Productivity per machine per day would depend on few factors such as - technology usage, availability of machine and equipment, product styling, skill level of the workers, daily working hours and on few other factors. 

Forget about these factors for a moment and see the real picture. How many shirts are made by factories per day per machine? From this online survey result I found that there is a big gap in between minimum and maximum machine productivity figures. It ranges from 6.67 pieces to 28.57 pieces per day (formal shirts). So there is a big opportunity for low productivity groups.

Background of the survey:

Couple of months ago (January 2014) I have conducted a survey on Shirt Productivity (Productivity Study of Shirt Manufacturing). Participants were mostly from India and Bangladesh. Data have been collected for both formal shirts and casual shirts. Factories work 8 to 10 hours per day. Few factories did not mention how many hours they work daily. Few of them may work more than 10 hours in a day.

Data was received from 55 participants. All abnormal entries are discarded. After discarding abnormal entries we have following results.

In the result I have not considered productivity factors such as number of working hours, technology level and operator's skill level. I have calculated productivity per machine per day irrespective of number of hours factories work daily. Read on the survey results and comment on these.

Survey Results: Formal Shirts

Number of participants: 33
Minimum productivity per machine per day: 6.67 Pieces
Maximum productivity per machine per day: 28.57 Pieces
Median: 15.71

Frequency of companies in different productivity groups are shown in the following diagram (Fig. 1)
Fig.1: Frequency of companies in different productivity group 

Survey Results: Casual Shirts

Number of participants: 15
Minimum productivity per machine per day: 5 pieces
Maximum productivity per machine per day: 32.4 pieces
Median: 11.67
Frequency of companies in different productivity groups are shown in the following diagram (Fig. 2)
Fig.2: Frequency of companies in different productivity group


You have seen that shirt manufacturing units work at difference performance level. You have to decide where you like reach. When some factories are making 20 pieces of shirts per machine per day, you can also make that much quantity provided you aim for that and act accordingly.

For further productivity study data you can refer the book by Dr. Bheda "Improving Productivity in the Garment Industry"

Question for Readers: What is you machine productivity?
Did you find this study useful?   Share it with your friends who need this information.

Prasanta Sarkar

Prasanta Sarkar is a textile engineer and a postgraduate in fashion technology from NIFT, New Delhi, India. He has authored 6 books in the field of garment manufacturing technology, garment business setup, and industrial engineering. He loves writing how-to guide articles in the fashion industry niche. He has been working in the apparel manufacturing industry since 2006. He has visited garment factories in many countries and implemented process improvement projects in numerous garment units in different continents including Asia, Europe, and South Africa. He is the founder and editor of the Online Clothing Study Blog.

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