5 Secrets to Bring Changes in Garment Factories for the Growth

"There is nothing permanent except change." – Heraclitus

To improve profitability and to compete with other businesses in your field, you need to change the way you work currently. Same is true for increasing yearly company turnover. You need to bring changes in your company. This article will cover what to change and why to bring change?

In the context of the current apparel business trend and customer demand, the owner of the garment manufacturing companies realized the urgent need to bring change in certain areas in their organization. I this article first I will show you some of the common issues inside garment factories and reasons behind the existence of such issues.

Current issues:

The main issue of a garment factory is that employees/departments are fighting with the common problems from the long time. Most of the known critical problems among those are
  • Late Shipment, 
  • Poor Product quality and 
  • High production cost
These are chronic problems across the garment factories.

The Fact:

Almost all garment factories have experienced managers. These managers are working in garment factories (production) for a long time. They have experience of working with different set of people as well as working with a variety of teams. Some of the managers also believe in bringing change with time.

Factory managers experience same problems since they entered to this field and day by day problems become a part of the system. They believe that problems will survive as long as processes are there. Even they are fighting against these problems day and night.

Few managers out of them had tried to find out the way for the improvement by learning new things and through bringing changes on the current situations. But their effort still confined within them. They did not sit together with other departments. They don’t know from where they need to start and how the solution will come.

Why problems are sustaining?

For better clarification, I will name a department as supplier department that provide work or feed to other departments. Rest of the departments that are taking work from supplier department is customer department. Factories don’t know the permanent solution for the chronic problems (quality issue, delay in production, increased production cost). Reason of not finding solutions may be partially as following.
  • Their approach towards the problem is not right
  • They don’t care for other department. They can only see shortcoming in other’s work
  • They always busy and try to do their best but don’t come forward to help a little bit to their customer departments
  • They are not ready to listen others suggestion on their job
  • In the other side customer departments also are not clear about the specification of materials they getting, even they don’t know how much to expect from their supplier department. 
Let me give an example stitching department to prove this. Irrespective of the size of the factories, process flow and product profile, common problems faced by internal departments are like -
  • Production status is not given to merchants on regular basis 
  • Poor quality of sewing, anyhow they dispose the pieces from sewing to finishing 
  • Finishing department not get pieces according to the size ratio from sewing department
  • Always takes more time than their commitment to planning department

This quote from Albert Einstein is perfect match for the garment manufacturers

"If you always do what you always did, you will get what you always got".

Few more reasons that become the stone wall in bringing change company-wide. These are all human related. Mostly these are like following -
  • They want improvement but don’t want to learn advanced and new things
  • They know that they need to bring changes company-wide but they don’t want to change themselves
  • They know the power of team work but not habituate to sit together and discuss issues with other team members.
  • Attitude towards the problem is not as strong as it is against the person who creates the problem.

How to bring changes (The 5 secrets)

Start a drive to bring change company-wide. Following are the secrets for bringing change in garment companies.

Secret#1: Change the approach towards the problem – Don’t attack the person who made the mistakes but attack to the problems.

Secret#2: Focus on company’s goal – One department alone can’t make the finished product. The salable product can be made only when all departments come together and do their part correctly. Don’t only look at departmental goal but focus on the company’s goal – shipping quality good on time at lowest manufacturing cost. Work as a team. Don’t work as isolated.

Secret#3: Apply Problem solving techniques to solve your problems. Problem may come but you need to work on to find root causes of the problem. One you know the root cause, it would be easier to take action to eliminate or reduce the negative impact of the root causes. Do brainstorm together to find out solution for a problem. And practice it regularly. Fish bone diagram is an effective tool to find out root causes of a problem.

Secret#4: Work as a team – Work as team and help each other. Listen others problems as well as suggestion. Fighting for the company’s good is a healthy fight.

Secret#5: Management must be involved in the change drive - Management participation is essential to change drive with employees. Management can do the followings
  • Improve employee morale
  • Provide on the job training
  • Bringing Team-work culture 
  • Show them the carrot
  • Provide clear responsibility to employees/departments
Can we bring changes and develop a good work culture in the garment industry? I want you to comment on this post.

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.

Post a Comment

  1. I have not found anything new, all points are under discussion since last 10 years with more than 80% garment industries!! to change the industry first we have change the mind of buying...That's it

  2. This is competition within competition, everyday new fty are emerging and they recruiting experienced one from old fty, so old good fty is facing difficulties to fill the gap with new fresh people, it turns into a learning school

  3. Nowadays garments trade are becoming rough and tough due to the imbalance competition among several buyers :P

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