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Understanding the human element

03 July 2018

Human and organisational factors have contributed to the causes of several incidents in the chemical process industries, including those at Texas City and Buncefield. Yet many of the safety and operational professionals responsible for managing human factors have no formal training in the behavioural sciences. 

The Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) addresses this gap by providing training on the core human factors issues in the process industries, and how to implement solutions to manage them effectively within a safety management system.

Human Factors in Health and Safety
is a modular training programme that focuses on how a better understanding of human factors can drive safety standards and overall business performance. The training is delivered in partnership with the Keil Centre, a recognised centre of excellence in human factors, and is endorsed by the Chartered Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors. Topics are organised to cover the UK Health and Safety Executive’s top human factors issues in major hazard sites, but these topics are just as applicable and relevant to non-UK regulatory frameworks.

The programme is ideal for those who want a comprehensive overview of human factors, including HSE managers/advisors, operations managers, safety engineers, chemical/process engineers, and in-house human factors advisors. Participants will understand what human factors is and how it affects health and safety, and how to manage human factors within an organisation, including the scope and involvement of different parties. They will develop knowledge about specific topic areas related to major accidents and how to reduce the related risks, and discover the common tools and techniques used within human factors. 
There are four modules available covering the key human factors concepts within risk management, how to manage human failure, how to strengthen organisational performance, and the key human factors issues to address at the design stage. Modules can be completed in any order so participants can join the programme at any point. They can sign up to complete the whole programme or attend single modules to develop understanding of a particular area of human factors.

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