A novel framework for manikin motion planning has been implemented to reduce the time needed to perform virtual ergonomic assessments of manual assembly sequences. The user feeds high level instructions into a hierarchical controller system. Depending on the state of the manikin and the objects in the environment, the controllers compute a sequence of low level instructions interpreted as path planning instances for the manikin. The result is automatically generated collision-free and ergonomically sound motions that accomplish the assembly tasks. The framework is demonstrated on relevant cases from the industry and the reduction in manual simulation preparation time is proven.