How to Develop Skill Matrix? (with Excel Template)

In today's post, I will show you how to prepare a skill matrix template in a spreadsheet and quickly retrieve the data when needed. You might already know what the skill matrix is. If you don't know - read this post.

Objectives of developing and maintaining operator skill matrix

Before you start developing a database for operators’ skill matrices, you should be clear about the objective of developing a skill matrix database. If you ask me what would be the object of developing a skill matrix, I will tell you primary objectives are
  1. To check operators skills in running different machines (efficiency percentage)
  2. To check operators capability of doing various operations (If you maintain operations wise records, you may skip recording machine records or keep both) and their performance level (efficiency %)
  3. To know the list of operators who can do selected operations and their performance level 

Method of developing Skill Matrix

Read this to learn step by step how to develop a template for a skill matrix.

Step#1: Develop an excel template for data recording:

We will be using excel sheet for developing the skill matrix. (Reason, most of the garment factories don’t have software for keeping skill matrix records.)

To have all basic information in one table, you need to capture the following data.
  • Date of data entry, 
  • Operator name and employee code, 
  • Operation name, 
  • Machine name and 
  • Operator efficiency on the operation
The minimum information you need to capture is in the following table (Table-1)

Operator skill matrix
Table-1: Data entry sheet

Sometimes you may be interested to have detailed analysis about operators’ performance, production quantity, style number on which operator has worked, number of hours she has worked etc. Capturing that much data manually and entering into computer is time consuming. Just for information one more data entry table is shown here (Table-2).
Operator skill matrix

Step#2. Capture data: 
Collect employee-wise production information as shown in Table-1. For individual operator efficiency data calculate it using this formula 

Operator efficiency = (Produced minutes*100/Total minutes worked)

You may capture all records of operators but don't enter everything in the database. You will get lot of variation in her efficiency on different dates and different styles. This happens due to many reasons like having lost time, line setting, no feeding, working for few hours in a new operation, working on new style etc. Ignore abnormal data and only record best performance out of many different efficiency data against an operator.

Also Read: How to calculate efficiency of individual operator?

Step#3. Enter data in the excel template
Instead of updating this table daily, you can update weekly intervals or update when you see an operator doing a new operation or having good performance. (Though operators performance depends on various things). 

If an operator is doing multiple operations in the same day, enter data in two rows to have her performance in all operations she has done.

You can keep an old record or replace the old one with a new record for an operator doing the same operation.

Step#4. View skill history report as you need 
I have made a pivot table to fetch data from the table (database) where you will be entering data. 
In the following section, I have explained how to use excel templates for data entry and reviewing reports.

How to use Excel Template to retrieve skill history of the employee/ operations

The objective of making a database is to get information on
  • Employee performance analysis
  • Selecting right employee for selected operations when required (also at the time of line setting)

In the file I have made two sheets – the Data entry sheet and the data retrieve sheet. I guess you can operate excel sheets very well. See Table-1 for the data entry template

1. Data entry sheet 
In this sheet, you will enter employee data with all required information. As said above you can modify earlier data of an employee by replacing it with a new record. Or add a new record.

2. Refresh file
When you add new record to the data entry sheet, refresh the file (Click menu Data - refresh all). This is done to get updated data in the second sheet. See below screen (Figure-1)
Excel tips pivot table data refresh

3. Data retrieve
In the data retrieve sheet I have added two tables named
  • Operator wise data view
  • Operation wise data view
Operator wise data: Select operator number for the drop-down menu (See figure-2). You get list of operations done by that selected operator, list of machine type she had operated before and date when you have last updated her record.
Figure-3: Operator wise skill history

Operation wise data: Select operation name for the drop down menu (See Figure. 3). You will get list of employees who all did the selected operation (in the example operation: Sleeve hem), list of machine type she had operated before and date when you have last updated her record.
Figure-3: Operation wise skill history 

Developing and maintaining a skill matrix is a time-consuming task. Still, you have developed it once, and update the same in weekly or monthly intervals would be very helpful. Real-time shop floor control systems have such a feature to record operator skill history automatically.

You might be using a different format for recording and viewing operator skills in your factory. However, do you like this method? If yes please write your feedback on the following comment box.

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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