HUMAN FACTORS BRIEFING NOTE No. 1 Introduction These briefing notes are aimed primarily at supervisors and managers, but anyone who works in the petroleum or allied industries should find them of interest. If supervisors or managers become aware that they or their workforce are experiencing any of the problems described, they should be able to take practical steps to help solve them by gathering information and drawing this to the attention of higher management, with a view to working together to make improvements. Introduction Understanding how human factors (HF) influence human performance is increasingly important as a management aid. There are many reference books and websites concerned with HF and, although the terms are in common use in industry, it can be difficult to easily find out what a particular HF issue is really about. The Energy Institute (EI) briefing notes provide a useful introduction to each HF subject and refer to the role of managers in organising tasks and work conditions. They point to useful data and methods for improving performance and: • Introduce each subject with a definition. • Illustrate problem areas and solutions using case studies. • Provide a checklist of questions to gauge whether your company has a problem. • Suggest what company/management can do to address the specific HF issue. • List references/useful sources of information. 2nd edition of the briefing notes The subjects described in the original briefing notes issued in 2003 were suggested in a workshop and by UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) inspectors based on the issues they continued to find in industry. A subsequent survey of those with an interest in these subjects produced 190 responses and suggested some new subjects and ideas for changes leading to the latest version of the briefing notes. What do the briefing notes cover? Each briefing note provides an overview of a HF issue that continues to cause problems in a wide range of industries. It also includes an overview of some useful HF methods. There are 20 briefing notes: 1. Introduction 8. Ergonomics 15. Incident and accident analysis 2. Alarm handling 9. Safety culture 16. Human factors integration 3. Organisational change 10. Communications 17. Performance indicators 4. Maintenance 11. Task analysis 18. Leadership 5. Fatigue 12. Human error and non-compliance 19. Pressure and stress 6. Safety critical procedures 13. Human reliability analysis 7. Training and competence 14. Behavioural safety 20. Occupational safety vs. process safety Copyright © 2011 Energy Institute. A professional membership body incorporated by Royal Charter 2003. Registered charity number 1097899. What can I do about it? For each HF issue: 1. Find out whether there is a problem in the organisation. 2. Draw findings to management’s attention. Ideally, conduct 1 and 2 as a joint effort with management’s input and support. 3. Seek to eliminate problems at source: • Remove or ‘engineer out’ the problems. • Look for ‘quick wins’ – easily achievable remedies. • Seek expert help when required – the Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors provides a directory of consultants (Reference 1). Ideas for gathering information: It is important to consider the right HF topics at the right time in a project lifecycle. For example, it will be difficult or impossible to develop procedures and training at the early concept stage of a project or to plan maintenance until the physical design of plant and facilities is decided. Some factors interact with others so that each one should not be considered in isolation from the others but as a whole. a. Conduct a brief survey – ask people face to face or using a questionnaire if they have a problem with, for example, alarms, fatigue, procedures, competence, etc. b. The briefing notes have a self-assessment checklist that can be used to create a paper or email based survey. If more ideas for questions to ask are needed, use the references shown in the briefing note. c. Gather physical evidence of HF problems where possible: photographs, printouts, logs, incident reports, etc. Descriptions of human factors HF refers to all of those things that could affect human performance in a task. The word ergonomics is used to describe broadly the same subject. HSE provides a useful guide to HF in its publication Reducing error and influencing behaviour and on their website (Reference 2). HSE describes HF as the: “…environmental, organisational and job factors, and human and individual characteristics which influence behaviour at work. Careful consideration of human factors can improve health and safety by reducing the number of accidents and cases of ill-health at work. It also provides considerable benefits for business by reducing the costs associated with such incidents and increasing efficiency.” HSE emphasises three basic factors: the job; the individual; and the organisation. The International Association of Oil and Gas Producers (OGP) has also produced a useful pamphlet entitled Human factors – a means of improving HSE performance (free download from OGP website, Reference 3), which describes three similar factors to HSE: facilities and equipment; people; and management systems. Benefits of human factors Despite the best intentions of managers and workforce, poor front line human performance is responsible for a large proportion of process safety and personal safety incidents at work (although the human contribution to successfully meeting an organisation’s objectives is also considerable). The HSE definition above also refers to organisational factors and describes some of the benefits of applying HF practices in the workplace, including accident reduction. But it may not be clear who benefits and how: • The workforce benefits by having: tasks matched to their capabilities and characteristics; adequate support from colleagues and supervisors; clear procedures and systems of work; appropriate training and competence development; and from well-designed shift and rest patterns, workplaces, systems and tools. • Management benefits by the above arrangements leading to: increased productivity; better quality of work; reduced errors and accidents; completion of projects on time and budget; and reduced costs. Copyright © 2011 Energy Institute. A professional membership body incorporated by Royal Charter 2003. Registered charity number 1097899. Integration of human factors It is important that HF considerations are included in specific projects but, perhaps more importantly, that they are integrated into an organisation’s everyday approach to managing people. A parallel can be drawn here with quality assurance (QA) that was formerly seen in many companies as useful but separate from day to day management. In the best performing companies, however, QA and other standards form part of how they do business. To achieve a similar integration of HF requires total commitment from the organisation’s most senior managers. Facilities and equipment People ergonomics physical characteristics (noise, lighting, temperature, etc.) workspace design maintenance reliability human behaviour human characteristics (physical and mental) fitness stress fatigue Management systems leadership management commitment change management incident investigation hazard identification risk assessment procedures training Adapted from Reference 3. Acknowledgements This resource pack was prepared by Bill Gall (Kingsley Management Ltd.), with the support of the Keil Centre, at the request of the EI Human and Organisational Factors Committee (HOFCOM). During this work, committee members included: Fiona Brindley Bill Gall Pete Jefferies Stuart King Rob Miles Allen Ormond Graham Reeves Rob Saunders Helen Rycraft Dr Mark Scanlon Dr John Symonds John Wilkinson Health and Safety Executive Kingsley Management Ltd. ConocoPhillips (Vice-Chair) EI (Secretary) Health and Safety Executive ABB BP plc (Chair) Shell International Exploration and Production B.V Magnox North Sites EI ExxonMobil Corporation Health and Safety Executive Technical editing and project coordination were carried out by Stuart King (EI). The briefing notes were designed by Lindsey Board (EI) and Pravin Dewdhory (Ideas Faculty Ltd.). The EI also wishes to acknowledge its appreciation to all stakeholders who made significant contributions during the survey and/or review stages of the project. www.energyinst.org/humanfactors This second edition of the Briefing notes has been produced as a result of work carried out within the Technical Team of the Energy Institute (EI), funded by the EI’s Technical Partners. The EI’s Technical Work Programme provides industry with cost effective, value adding knowledge on key current and future issues affecting those operating in the energy sector, both in the UK and beyond. The EI gratefully acknowledges contributions to the scientific and technical programme from the following companies: BG Group BP Exploration Operating Co Ltd BP Oil UK Ltd Centrica Chevron ConocoPhillips Ltd EDF Energy ENI E. ON UK ExxonMobil International Ltd Kuwait Petroleum International Ltd Maersk Oil North Sea UK Limited Murco Petroleum Ltd Nexen Premier Oil RWE npower Saudi Aramco Shell UK Oil Products Limited Shell U.K. Exploration and Production Ltd Statoil Hydro Talisman Energy (UK) Ltd Total E&P UK plc Total UK Limited World Fuel Services However, it should be noted that the above organisations have not all been directly involved in the development of this publication, nor do they necessarily endorse its content. Copyright © 2011 by the Energy Institute, London. The Energy Institute is a professional membership body incorporated by Royal Charter 2003. Registered charity number 1097899, England All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced by any means, or transmitted or translated into a machine language without the written permission of the publisher. ISBN 978 0 85293 608 5 Published by the Energy Institute The information contained in this publication is provided as guidance only and while every reasonable care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of its contents, the Energy Institute cannot accept any responsibility for any action taken, or not taken, on the basis of this information. The Energy Institute shall not be liable to any person for any loss or damage which may arise from the use of any of the information contained in any of its publications. Additional copies of the Briefing notes and other EI publications are available online from: www.energypublishing.org or the EI’s book distributors, Portland Customer Services: t: +44 (0) 1206 796 351, e: [email protected] Electronic access to EI and IP publications is available via our website, www.energypublishing.org. Documents can be purchased online as downloadable pdfs or on an annual subscription for single users and companies. For more information, contact the EI Publications Team, e: [email protected] References 1. The Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors http://www.iehf.org/. 2. HSE (1999), Reducing error and influencing behaviour, HSG48, HSE Books, http://www.hse.gov.uk. 3. OGP, Human Factors – A means of improving HSE performance, http://www.ogp.org.uk. Further reading • Crowl, DA (ed) (2007) Human factors methods for improving performance in the process industries, Center for Chemical Process Safety (CCPS), Wiley-Interscience. The following websites are useful sources of further information on ergonomics/HF: • Step Change In Safety website http://www.stepchangeinsafety.net. • The Ergonomics Information Advisory Centre, based at Birmingham University http://www.eee.bham.ac.uk/eiac. • The International Association of Oil and Gas Producers (OGP) http://www.ogp.org.uk Copyright © 2011 Energy Institute. A professional membership body incorporated by Royal Charter 2003. Registered charity number 1097899.
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