The list of human and organisational factors topics can at first seem a little daunting. In order to help you decide where to start we have provided some guidance below.
The Key Topics can be placed into three categories:
- Core topics that will provide an insight into the management of human issues at any site (e.g. Procedures, Training and competence, Managing human failures, Incident investigation);
- Common topics that are only relevant for some sites (e.g. Contractorisation, Control rooms, Alarm management, Permit to Work);
- Specific topics that are only relevant at certain times (e.g. Organisational change).
If this is your first attempt to address human and organisational factors, we suggest that you start with one of the above Core Topics, unless you have specific concerns in one of the other areas.
The choice of topics may also be informed by the type of operations:
- Highly automated operations – consider Alarm management and Human computer interfaces;
- Manual operations – consider Managing human failures, Procedures and Communications.
You may also note that there are links between several of the Key Topics. For example, if you review Procedures, you may also wish to consider Training and competence, Organisational culture, and Maintenance error. On the other hand, if you review human failures, you should also consider Fatigue, Design, Procedures and Training and competence.
Another decision to make is to whether you wish to review several of the Key Topics for a particular work area, department or role, or whether to address one Key Topic in detail site-wide:
- Option 1: focus on e.g. a control room and consider communications, supervision, alarm management, human computer interfaces; procedures, training and competence, fatigue, human failures etc. This option may be appropriate where you wish to review all human aspects relating to a particular activity or role.
- Option 2: focus on a single topic, such as Training and competence, across your whole site – considering all activities and staff types – and reviewing all aspects of this topic in detail. This option may be appropriate following a complaint, audit, or investigation findings that highlighted a certain topic.