Role Of A Supervisor In General Labour Jobs

Facts About Supervisory General Labour Jobs

A foreman or a forewoman’s role is a supervisory one. He/she overlooks the blue collar workers who perform a number of menial duties that range from laying bricks, to putting up a scaffolding and working in retail. The types of responsibilities are too multifarious to be cited and the term general workforce does not even begin to cover a modicum of the functions handled by blue collar workers.


The term foreman is usually limited to the work shop dealing with metals or mechanical tasks. The textile industry prefers to call them as second-hands while they are known as boat swains in the shipping industry. The overseers / gang lords are the related term denoted to the foremen in the construction industry and other industries have a number of other titles conferred on the supervisory boss.


The work is more or less the same, however, whatever be the term denoted to it. It is a simple job of checking whether the worker is doing the general labour jobs properly and serve as a middle man between the workers and the managerial staff.

Additional Charges

Their job is not limited to overseeing the procedure of work though. They have to perform a number of other activities as well that include:-

  • Teaching the workers about workplace safety and enforcing the same throughout the work place.
  • Make the workers understand and utilize specific procedures that will help them to save both time as well as labor.
  • Acting as a liaison between the management and employees engaged in general labour jobs and keep the workers informed about the company’s future plans and policies. The foremen may also represent the management in discussions with labour unions wherever applicable.
  • They usually play a major role in the progress of a worker as the supervisor happens to be the one who can recommend pay hikes, awards or promotions.
  • They have the right to reprimand, rebuke or take disciplinary measures when a worker chooses to ignore the rules of the company or is non-productive. The final act of firing or termination of a worker s on general labour jobs is also the responsibility of a supervisor.

Required qualities of a supervisor

  • Skilled and familiar with the working procedures
  • Leadership abilities
  • Motivational & organized
  • Must be able to command respect
  • Knowledge of industry standards
  • Knowledge of Labor law and best practices
  • Must possess a certification in workplace safety

The supervisor or foreman must be able to read the thoughts of his workers and should have a psychological bent of mind. Being fair is yet another quality that is sure to be appreciated when recommending awards or disciplining a specific worker.

Future Prospects

The future of supervisory general labour jobs tend to somewhat discouraging as the statistics reveal a very slow increase for such positions in the coming years. While the maximum number of blue collar supervisors has been noted in construction and other production industries so far, the prospects in services and trade industries look astonishingly bright for the future.


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