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Human Factors Engineers and Ergonomists

Design objects, facilities, and environments to optimize human well-being and overall system performance, applying theory, principles, and data regarding the relationship between humans and respective technology. Investigate and analyze characteristics of human behavior and performance as it relates to the use of technology.

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    Work Activities

    Work Activities

    • Develop or implement research methodologies or statistical analysis plans to test and evaluate developmental prototypes used in new products or processes, such as cockpit designs, user workstations, or computerized human models.
    • Collect data through direct observation of work activities or witnessing the conduct of tests.
    • Advocate for end users in collaboration with other professionals, including engineers, designers, managers, or customers.
    • Estimate time or resource requirements for ergonomic or human factors research or development projects.
    • Provide human factors technical expertise on topics, such as advanced user-interface technology development or the role of human users in automated or autonomous sub-systems in advanced vehicle systems.
    • Perform functional, task, or anthropometric analysis, using tools, such as checklists, surveys, videotaping, or force measurement.
    • Estimate time or resource requirements for ergonomic or human factors research or development projects.
    • Recommend workplace changes to improve health and safety, using knowledge of potentially harmful factors, such as heavy loads or repetitive motions.
    • Write, review, or comment on documents, such as proposals, test plans, or procedures.
    • Conduct interviews or surveys of users or customers to collect information on topics, such as requirements, needs, fatigue, ergonomics, or interfaces.
    • Design cognitive aids, such as procedural storyboards or decision support systems.
    • Design or evaluate human work systems, using human factors engineering and ergonomic principles to optimize usability, cost, quality, safety, or performance.
    • Conduct research to evaluate potential solutions related to changes in equipment design, procedures, manpower, personnel, or training.
    • Prepare reports or presentations summarizing results or conclusions of human factors engineering or ergonomics activities, such as testing, investigation, or validation.
    • Review health, safety, accident, or worker compensation records to evaluate safety program effectiveness or to identify jobs with high incidence of injury.
    • Investigate theoretical or conceptual issues, such as the human design considerations of lunar landers or habitats.
    • Inspect work sites to identify physical hazards.
    • Analyze complex systems to determine potential for further development, production, interoperability, compatibility, or usefulness in a particular area, such as aviation.
    • Provide technical support to clients through activities, such as rearranging workplace fixtures to reduce physical hazards or discomfort or modifying task sequences to reduce cycle time.
    • Design or evaluate human work systems, using human factors engineering and ergonomic principles to optimize usability, cost, quality, safety, or performance.
    • Establish system operating or training requirements to ensure optimized human-machine interfaces.
    • Integrate human factors requirements into operational hardware.
    • Perform statistical analyses, such as social network pattern analysis, network modeling, discrete event simulation, agent-based modeling, statistical natural language processing, computational sociology, mathematical optimization, or systems dynamics.
    • Apply modeling or quantitative analysis to forecast events, such as human decisions or behaviors, the structure or processes of organizations, or the attitudes or actions of human groups.
    • Operate testing equipment, such as heat stress meters, octave band analyzers, motion analysis equipment, inclinometers, light meters, thermoanemometers, sling psychrometers, or colorimetric detection tubes.
    • Assess the user-interface or usability characteristics of products.
    • Train users in task techniques or ergonomic principles.
    • Develop or implement human performance research, investigation, or analysis protocols.

    Skills

    • Reading Comprehension

      Reading work-related information.

    • Persuasion

      Talking people into changing their minds or their behavior.

    • Mathematics

      Using math to solve problems.

    • Complex Problem Solving

      Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.

    • Operations Monitoring

      Watching gauges, dials, or display screens to make sure a machine is working.

    • Management of Personnel Resources

      Selecting and managing the best workers for a job.

    • Programming

      Writing computer programs.

    • Time Management

      Managing your time and the time of other people.

    • Science

      Using scientific rules and strategies to solve problems.

    • Operations Analysis

      Figuring out what a product or service needs to be able to do.

    • Operation and Control

      Using equipment or systems.

    • Systems Analysis

      Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it.

    • Writing

      Writing things for co-workers or customers.

    • Learning Strategies

      Using the best training or teaching strategies for learning new things.

    • Management of Financial Resources

      Making spending decisions and keeping track of what is spent.

    • Speaking

      Talking to others.

    • Quality Control Analysis

      Testing how well a product or service works.

    • Critical Thinking

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.

    • Systems Evaluation

      Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.

    • Equipment Selection

      Deciding what kind of tools and equipment are needed to do a job.

    • Troubleshooting

      Figuring out what is causing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs to not work.

    • Social Perceptiveness

      Understanding people's reactions.

    • Coordination

      Changing what is done based on other people's actions.

    • Installation

      Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs.

    • Negotiation

      Bringing people together to solve differences.

    • Technology Design

      Making equipment and technology useful for customers.

    • Judgment and Decision Making

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one.

    • Active Listening

      Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.

    • Active Learning

      Figuring out how to use new ideas or things.

    • Equipment Maintenance

      Planning and doing the basic maintenance on equipment.

    • Instructing

      Teaching people how to do something.

    • Repairing

      Repairing machines or systems using the right tools.

    • Monitoring

      Keeping track of how well people and/or groups are doing in order to make improvements.

    • Management of Material Resources

      Managing equipment and materials.

    • Service Orientation

      Looking for ways to help people.

    WorkKeys®

    Applied Math
    7
    Workplace Documents
    6
    Graphic Literacy
    5

    Abilities

    • Night Vision

      Seeing at night or under low light.

    • Extent Flexibility

      Bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Oral Comprehension

      Listening and understanding what people say.

    • Near Vision

      Seeing details up close.

    • Speed of Limb Movement

      Quickly moving your arms and legs.

    • Fluency of Ideas

      Coming up with lots of ideas.

    • Flexibility of Closure

      Seeing hidden patterns.

    • Finger Dexterity

      Putting together small parts with your fingers.

    • Response Orientation

      Quickly deciding if you should move your hand, foot, or other body part.

    • Static Strength

      Lifting, pushing, pulling, or carrying.

    • Inductive Reasoning

      Making general rules or coming up with answers from lots of detailed information.

    • Visualization

      Imagining how something will look after it is moved around or changed.

    • Number Facility

      Adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing.

    • Arm-Hand Steadiness

      Keeping your arm or hand steady.

    • Manual Dexterity

      Holding or moving items with your hands.

    • Rate Control

      Changing when and how fast you move based on how something else is moving.

    • Speech Clarity

      Speaking clearly.

    • Reaction Time

      Quickly moving your hand, finger, or foot based on a sound, light, picture or other command.

    • Peripheral Vision

      Seeing something to your side when your are looking ahead.

    • Explosive Strength

      Jumping, sprinting, or throwing something.

    • Auditory Attention

      Paying attention to one sound while there are other distracting sounds.

    • Depth Perception

      Deciding which thing is closer or farther away from you, or deciding how far away it is from you.

    • Gross Body Coordination

      Moving your arms, legs, and mid-section together while your whole body is moving.

    • Trunk Strength

      Using your lower back and stomach.

    • Visual Color Discrimination

      Noticing the difference between colors, including shades and brightness.

    • Written Comprehension

      Reading and understanding what is written.

    • Far Vision

      Seeing details that are far away.

    • Sound Localization

      Noticing the direction that a sound came from.

    • Hearing Sensitivity

      Telling the difference between sounds.

    • Information Ordering

      Ordering or arranging things.

    • Memorization

      Remembering words, numbers, pictures, or steps.

    • Written Expression

      Communicating by writing.

    • Category Flexibility

      Grouping things in different ways.

    • Control Precision

      Quickly changing the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.

    • Selective Attention

      Paying attention to something without being distracted.

    • Stamina

      Exercising for a long time without getting out of breath.

    • Wrist-Finger Speed

      Making fast, simple, repeated movements of your fingers, hands, and wrists.

    • Dynamic Flexibility

      Quickly and repeatedly bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching out with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Glare Sensitivity

      Seeing something even if there is a glare or very bright light.

    • Speech Recognition

      Recognizing spoken words.

    • Problem Sensitivity

      Noticing when problems happen.

    • Deductive Reasoning

      Using rules to solve problems.

    • Perceptual Speed

      Quickly comparing groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.

    • Speed of Closure

      Quickly knowing what you are looking at.

    • Multilimb Coordination

      Using your arms and/or legs together while sitting, standing, or lying down.

    • Time Sharing

      Doing two or more things at the same time.

    • Oral Expression

      Communicating by speaking.

    • Dynamic Strength

      Exercising for a long time without your muscles getting tired.

    • Gross Body Equilibrium

      Keeping your balance or staying upright.

    • Originality

      Creating new and original ideas.

    • Mathematical Reasoning

      Choosing the right type of math to solve a problem.

    • Spatial Orientation

      Knowing where things are around you.

    Knowledge

    • Mechanical

      Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

    • Physics

      Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub-atomic structures and processes.

    • Geography

      Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.

    • Building and Construction

      Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.

    • Telecommunications

      Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.

    • Administrative

      Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.

    • Customer and Personal Service

      Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

    • Law and Government

      Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.

    • Transportation

      Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.

    • English Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

    • Personnel and Human Resources

      Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.

    • Medicine and Dentistry

      Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.

    • Fine Arts

      Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

    • Food Production

      Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.

    • Education and Training

      Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

    • Engineering and Technology

      Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.

    • Foreign Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.

    • Production and Processing

      Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

    • Biology

      Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.

    • History and Archeology

      Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.

    • Public Safety and Security

      Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

    • Communications and Media

      Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.

    • Economics and Accounting

      Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking, and the analysis and reporting of financial data.

    • Therapy and Counseling

      Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.

    • Administration and Management

      Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

    • Computers and Electronics

      Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

    • Mathematics

      Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

    • Sociology and Anthropology

      Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures, and their history and origins.

    • Design

      Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

    • Chemistry

      Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.

    • Psychology

      Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

    • Philosophy and Theology

      Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.

    • Sales and Marketing

      Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

    Career Video

    Additional videos and more information available on CareerOneStop

    Pay

    • Ohio Annual Salary 87120/yr
    • Typical Salary
    • Ohio Hourly Wage 41.88/hr
    • Typical Hourly Wage

    Ohio Employment Trends

    • Currently Employed 16,350
    • Yearly Projected Openings 1150

    Typical Education

    Personality

    Investigative: People interested in this work like activities that include ideas, thinking, and figuring things out.They do well at jobs that need:
    • Dependability
    • Analytical Thinking
    • Integrity
    • Attention to Detail
    • Cooperation
    • Adaptability/Flexibility

    Tools

    • Air velocity and temperature monitors
    • Aircraft flight simulators or trainers
    • Cardiac output CO monitoring units
    • Colorimeters
    • Compression testers
    • Desktop computers
    • Digital camcorders or video cameras
    • Digital voice recorders
    • Distance meters
    • Dynamometers
    • Electrocardiography EKG units
    • Electroencephalograph EEGs
    • Electromyography EMG units
    • Electronic blood pressure units
    • Flowmeters
    • Goniometers or arthrometers
    • Heat stress monitors
    • Laser printers
    • Lux or light meter
    • Mercury blood pressure units
    • Microphones
    • Multimedia projectors
    • Notebook computers
    • Oxygen gas analyzers
    • Personal computers
    • Physiological recorders
    • Psychrometers
    • Skinfold calipers
    • Sound measuring apparatus or decibel meter
    • Tablet computers
    • Thickness measuring devices
    • Touch pads
    • Touch screen monitors
    • Treadmills

    Technology

    • Analytical or scientific software
    • Computer aided design CAD software
    • Content workflow software
    • Desktop publishing software
    • Development environment software
    • Document management software
    • Electronic mail software
    • Enterprise application integration software
    • Graphical user interface development software
    • Graphics or photo imaging software
    • Internet browser software
    • Object or component oriented development software
    • Office suite software
    • Operating system software
    • Presentation software
    • Process mapping and design software
    • Program testing software
    • Spreadsheet software
    • Video creation and editing software
    • Web page creation and editing software
    • Web platform development software
    • Word processing software
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