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Material cutter



K1: The material cutters role, responsibilities, and position within the wider production operation. Back to Duty

K2: Operational insight: types of products produced and types of customers (clothing, home wear, retailers, bespoke). Back to Duty

K3: The end to end production process, quality requirements, deadlines and targets, performance rates (efficiency). Back to Duty

K4: Commercial considerations (efficiency, material cost, production costs). Back to Duty

K5: Health and Safety: Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH), Manual Handling, Risk Assessments, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) (Chain mail gloves), machine guards. Back to Duty

K6: Environment and sustainability; Environmental Protection Act 1990, consequences of waste disposal (landfill), energy efficiency. Back to Duty

K7: Work-station ergonomics; posture and positioning whilst cutting. Back to Duty

K8: Workload planning for example scheduling and prioritisation. Back to Duty

K9: The construction, behaviour and appropriate use of different types of materials: canvas, leather, silk, vinyl, woollens. Back to Duty

K10: Material characteristics: quality, colour, pattern, print, pile, correct side. Back to Duty

K11: Material matching techniques for stripes, checks, pattern repeat, print placement. Back to Duty

K12: Material faults and fault tolerances; shading, discoloration, print error, holes, marks. Back to Duty

K13: Component shapes and product parts. Back to Duty

K14: Cutting specifications and instructions; the number to be cut, grain line, size, pairs. Back to Duty

K15: Mathematical techniques for cutting, measuring and calculating meterage. Back to Duty

K16: Measuring tools, equipment and techniques. Back to Duty

K17: Material spreading and transferring information requirements; darts, ease, pocket positions. Back to Duty

K18: Lay planning and pattern placement techniques; manual and machine. Back to Duty

K19: Manual and machine cutting techniques; quality check requirements. Back to Duty

K20: Material cutting machines and equipment: knives, cutting machines, press, scissors; their purpose. Back to Duty

K21: The consequence of machine/equipment mis-use – accidents, machine isolation. Back to Duty

K22: First line preventative maintenance requirements: checking, cleaning, sharpening, or changing blades. Back to Duty

K23: Re-cut request procedures and the re-cut process. Back to Duty

K24: Continuous improvement techniques: lean, 6-Sigma, KAIZEN, 5S (Sort, Set In order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain). Back to Duty

K25: Documentation requirements and their purpose: specification sheets, work records, labels. Back to Duty

K26: Verbal and written communication techniques. Back to Duty

K27: Material cutter terminology: ease, pairs, grain, right side. Back to Duty

K28: Team working techniques and benefits. Back to Duty

K29: Equality and Diversity in the workplace. Back to Duty


S1: Read, interpret, and follow information for example work instructions, material specifications. Back to Duty

S2: Prepare the work area for cutting materials. Back to Duty

S3: Maintain the work area. Back to Duty

S4: Follow health and safety regulations, legislation and procedures; PPE, manual handling, lifting procedures and ergonomic practice. Back to Duty

S5: Follow environmental and sustainability regulations and procedures. Back to Duty

S6: Estimate and calculate material requirements to complete the job. Back to Duty

S7: Select material following specification or instruction. Back to Duty

S8: Inspect materials against specifications and quality standard. Back to Duty

S9: Check lay plan. Back to Duty

S10: Prepare materials for cutting for example lay and spread material. Back to Duty

S11: Select, check and use tools/equipment for the task. Back to Duty

S12: Cut material by hand and/or machine for example band knife, shears, laser. Back to Duty

S13: Check quality of the lay post cut for example waste minimised, grain, component positioning, colour continuity. Back to Duty

S14: Check cut components. Back to Duty

S15: Prepare material for the next stage of the production process for example bundling, labelling. Back to Duty

S16: Identify and segregate material for reuse, recycling and disposal. Back to Duty

S17: Check and clean tools and equipment and sharpen or change blades as required. Back to Duty

S18: Report cutting issues for example material faults, equipment faults shortages, required recuts, lay plan. Back to Duty

S19: Apply continuous improvement techniques. Back to Duty

S20: Communicate with colleagues: verbal. Back to Duty

S21: Enter information – written or electronic. Back to Duty


B1: Prioritises health, safety and the environment, for example follows safe ergonomic practices, ensures safety and welfare of self and others and adopts environmental working practices. Back to Duty

B2: Uses own initiative, for example when dealing with material faults and flaws. Back to Duty

B3: Adaptable and flexible, for example in response to changes in priorities and work deadlines. Back to Duty

B4: Team player, for example keeps others informed, interacts proactively, considers impact of actions on others, and takes account of equality and diversity. Back to Duty

B5: Takes ownership and responsibility, for example seeks to meet quality targets, completes allocated work on time, escalates issues. Back to Duty

B6: Professional, for example polite and courteous, a good timekeeper, has a positive can-do attitude. Back to Duty

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