Human Factors Engineer Responsibilities

With the advent of technological developments happening in various sectors, most of the machines have been designed to carry out their functions automatically. However, to ensure their proper functioning, a human operator is still required. This is where the significance of human factors engineer can be realized. Human factors engineer responsibilities comprise working with a team of engineers and psychologists to develop and design a system that will work well with the help of an individual.

Key Responsibilities of a Human Factors Engineer

Human factors engineer is responsible for making a significant contribution to the organization by designing a system that will blend well with the mechanical process and ensure that the efficiency of the system is increased. This will further lead to increasing the utilization of the system and raising its performance level in terms of user satisfaction. Further more, the human factors engineer makes sure that the human errors are reduced to a minimum level, the stress levels of the operator is reduced and also that the training requirements are minimized. He/she studies the human machine interaction and helps in designing, evaluating and implementing a system that will integrate with various mechanized processes. To get a better idea, provided below is a detailed description of the key responsibilities that need to be handled by the human factors engineer:

  1. To develop and review the overall system design and help in planning the developmental plans.
  2. To coordinate with the team of psychologists and other engineers to get an idea and discuss as to how exactly the machine or the system is going to operate.
  3. After the product has been designed, it needs to be tested appropriately so that there are no discrepancies.
  4. The human factors engineer then studies the test reports in detail to develop and redesign a new product.
  5. While designing such products, he/she takes into account various factors like its ergonomics, the user friendliness of the designed product, its safe utilization, etc., so that it does not affect the life of the operator.

The human factors engineer, thus defines and sets the mission to accomplish the assigned duties under the given circumstances. He/she is involved in reviewing and analyzing the proposals and making recommendations to ensure the feasibility as well as the compatibility of the product that will be designed. Thus, he/she ensures that all the requirements are being satisfied and that the designed product is as per the required standards. In short, he/she is primarily accountable for ensuring the health and safety of the operator and reducing the risks involved while operating that particular machine or system.

Essential Skills

The human factors engineer should be a self starter, energetic, and detail oriented with excellent communication and organizational skills. He/she should be comfortable to work in a team environment as well as should be able to work independently with minimum supervision. He/she should be a creative problem solver with exceptional ability to focus and prioritize the critical tasks. He/she should have creative vision and patience to redesign the products as per the requirement.

Educational Background

The human factors engineer should have completed a bachelor's degree in engineering, human factors, cognitive psychology, behavioral or related science or any other advanced degree related to system or industrial engineering. The individual who has previous work experience in designing will definitely have an edge and has got better chances of being selected for that particular job.

Work Schedule

Human factors engineers are employed in a variety of fields like military, aviation, etc., to name a few. This professional needs to work for at least eight to nine hours in a day. He/she normally works for five days a week, Monday to Friday, and may need to work overtime on the weekends or holidays, if there is work load.

Salary Details

The average salary for a human factors engineer is between $83,000 to $87,000. The minimum starting salary is close to $56,000, while the maximum salary for the experienced engineers can be in the range of $120,000 to $124,000. However, the salary mentioned over here is only for reference, and it will vary according to the type, location, and size of the organization he/she is employed in.

Career Prospects

The demand for human factors engineers is definitely going to rise in the coming few years, and the growth is expected to rise by about ten to eleven percent. More and more organizations are now eager to recruit human factors engineers that will eventually increase the efficiency of the product and reduce the risks associated with the life of the operator.

Thus, you are now well aware of the various human factors engineering responsibilities, skills, and educational background that are necessary to ensure a rewarding career, which will eventually help you in achieving new milestones in your engineering career.

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