Pilot Run Before Bulk Production in Garments Industry

What is a Pilot Run Before Bulk Production in the Garments Industry?

The pilot run is considered a trial production run in the garments industry. It is a very important part of prior bulk production to ensure that it is defect-free. It is done after Pre-Production sample approval & before bulk cutting. Before bulk cutting, if all is correct, then get approval. According to buyer advice, the pilot run should be maintained before bulk cutting. It is the test production. Usually, garment manufacturers cut approximately 300-350 pieces for trial production for every order or style. Pilot run cut based on PP comments. All trial orders are treated as mini bulk production & cheek properly before bulk cutting. The factory must follow the production procedure; otherwise, bulk production will not be perfect.

What is a Pilot Run Before Bulk Production in the Garments Industry

What is Pilot Run in the Garments Industry?

A pilot run is a sampling process on a larger scale in the garment industry. A test sampling process between the Pre-production meeting and Bulk production. The production of pilot run quantity is added to the bulk amount if it meets customer specifications. Pilot run evaluation gives green signal bulk production.

Why do we need to do the Pilot Run after PP Meeting?

Some corrections come after the PP sample evaluation in pattern and construction. So, we need to verify that the corrections meet the buyer’s specifications. A small sampling quantity in the pp stage cannot guarantee the bulk, so if any minor correction is needed after the pilot, that’s done to ensure the bulk is error-free.

Is Pilot Run required for every lot or PO?

No, it is generally required for bigger lots, like a minimum of 10,000 nos or more in order quantity.

Importance of Pilot Run Before Bulk Production

1. To check the garment’s quality and whether they meet requirements as per buyer standard or not.
2. Production techniques and capacity study will be done at this stage.
3. Pilot run pieces are carefully checked by the factory quality department at every stage of production
4. Based on pilot run production, bulk production is planned.
5. It is done for all sizes, colors, and styles of garments.
6. Actual machines (sewing), Fabric, trims, and accessories are set up for a pilot run.
7. Pilot runs can minimize production time as a trial of whole PO production.
8. It can correct wrong actions, which can decrease bulk production.
9. The production team learns about the initial operation.
10. Bottleneck problems are identified and resolved in this stage.
11. Rechecking of needed row materials.
12. Re- planning additional process.
13. Maintaining WIP in production time.
14. Testing areas and equipment in this process.
15. Identified failure modes and production issues.
16. Control all the processes and final steps before bulk production. It is done for 200-300 garment pieces.
17. Find out the operation timeline.
18. It helps increase productivity.

Consider the following things are Mandatory During the Pilot run in the Garments Industry:

  1. The pilot run must proceed on the industry production line.
  2. The pilot run must cover All sizes and colors of purchase orders.
  3. The pilot run was checked by buyer QA before factory QA.
  4. Pilot-run comments/ evaluation reports apply to bulk production.
  5. Measure and visually inspect the pilot production sample; if any correction is required, do it urgently.

If the pilot run is not performed in a factory, there can be many mistakes in bulk production. Every style needs test production before bulk cutting for perfect execution.


A buyer QC is the leader in passing pilot runs in the garments industry. His evaluation report is the key here. So, it is clear to us what a pilot run before bulk production is in the garment industry.

Pilot Run Before Bulk Production in Garments Industry

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