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Risk Areas:
Human Factors

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  • AF Policy Directive 90-9: Operational Risk Management, 1 April 2000
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  • AFMC Instruction 90-902: Operational Risk Management, Dec 2007

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    The systematic application of relevant information about human abilities, characteristics, behavior, motivation, and performance.


    • To ensure operational effectiveness, has a comprehensive technical effort been made to integrate human factors qualitative and quantitative information into system design, testing, and acquisition? Such information includes:
      • human characteristics
      • operator/maintainer capability requirements
      • soldier performance data
      • system interface requirements
      • biomedical factors
      • safety factors
      • training factors
      • manning implications

    • Are human factors engineering topics addressed in the:
      • Mission Needs Statement
      • Operational Requirements Document
      • Contract Statement of Work
      • Testing and Evaluation plans

    • Has a user or user's representative been an active participant in concept development, system design, and test planning?

    • Have equipment performance requirements been considered with human performance requirements and capabilities?

    • Task performance data
      • Obtain data from:
        • Checklists
        • Interviews
        • Questionnaires
        • SME observations and ratings
        • Direct performance measures
        • Video (time & motion studies)
      • Number of tasks attempted and completed
      • Time to perform
      • Accuracy
        • Number or proportion of successfully completed tasks
        • Human reliability: Consider sources of human error:
          • Inadequate aptitude: too difficult for selected personnel (e.g., too many steps)
          • Inadequate training
          • Equipment configuration induces error
          • Environmental conditions induce human error
          • Eliminate through design typical sources of human error
      • Reasons tasks were not completed
        • Insufficient manpower
        • Inadequate aptitudes
        • Poor training
        • Poor human factors design
        • Lack of, or poor job performance aids
        • Lack of feedback devices

    • Task description & analysis

    • Task criticality, frequency of task, learning difficulty, decay rate

    • "High driver" tasks

    • Information flow analysis

    • Task allocation analysis
      • Soldier
      • Soldier and machine
      • Machine
      • Manual override of specific functions considered?
      • Sequence of operational instructions
      • Task-interdependence of crew members

    • Workload analysis
      • Mental workload:
        • Information processing demands
        • Memory requirements
        • Learning and retention requirements
        • Sensory discrimination requirements
      • Physical workload demands:
        • Task overload
        • Biomedical considerations
        • Strength and endurance considerations
      • How will degraded manning affect performance?
      • Is the number of soldiers planned to perform various critical tasks required by the system sufficient to meet the system performance requirements?

    • Psychomotor requirements

    • Task environment

    • Maintenance, ease of: does system require major dismantling for access to frequently replaced components? Are built-in self-diagnostics feasible?

    • Equipment and Workspace Design
      • Crew interfaces
      • Human-computer interface
      • Interface compatibility with the capabilities/characteristics of the target audience
      • Usability (as judged by the test players via questionnaires, or exhibited in behaviors). Poor interface design or poor training could be reflected by:
        • Repetition of task steps
        • Increase in error rates
        • Excessive use of on-line help or system documentation
        • Requests for assistance
        • Verbal/non-verbal complaints
      • Ergonomic considerations
      • Anthropometric data

    • Stress
      • Heat stress
      • Psychological stress
      • Continuous operations
      • Fatigue
      • Isolation
      • Crowding
      • Will battle stress degrade performance?

    • Can the operator perform all required tasks in the prescribed manner while wearing MOPP or other special equipment?

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    Last modified: Wednesday, April 2, 2003