Exploring the social and organisational aspects of human factors integration: a framework and case study
journal contributionposted on 23.02.2010 by Patrick Waterson, Stephven Lemalu-Kolose
Any type of content formally published in an academic journal, usually following a peer-review process.
In this paper we first outline a framework which aims to capture some of the social and organisational aspects of human factors integration (HFI) which have been outlined by previous research. The framework was partly used to design a set of interview questions that were used with a case study of a human factors team working with the UK defence industry. The findings from the case study revealed a number of barriers which accord with previous research in the domain of HFI (e.g., attitudes and perceptions towards HF), as well as providing insights into the improvement strategies used by the HF team in order to improve HFI. These included attempts to build relationships and establish a working rapport with other groups in the company, as well as other activities aimed at addressing the organisational culture within the company as a whole (e.g., attempts to raise the profile of HF within the company). We use the framework for social and organisational aspects of HFI to discuss our findings alongside other research on group behaviour and boundary management within large organisations. The conclusions of the paper point to the utility of the framework as a means of planning HFI improvement strategies which can help to overcome some of the social and organisational barriers to HFI.