Human Factors Engineer
Make products easier to use by studying human behavior.
If you enjoy studying human behavior and dream of designing new products, then a Human Factors Ergonomist job might be your dream job. As a Human Factors Ergonomist, you gather information about how people act, and then redesign or create new products for their use based on that information.
You focus on how the work affects the person working. Consider a production line where the worker must make the same repetitive act hundreds of times each day. Your job as a Human Factors Ergonomist is to study that process and the tools used, and then change some aspect of it so that the job becomes easier for the worker. Perhaps you could change the order of tasks, or have the employees rotate through different positions to reduce strain on one body part. Or maybe you could introduce a tool to make the job easier, or automate one portion of the line.
Car dashboards, ironing boards, and computer keyboards are all examples of what Human Factors Ergonomists can create. The more you understand about human behavior, the better these products become.
Consider the advancements in phones in the last 30 years. The rotary phone turned into the push-button one. Then cell phones hit the market. They were as huge as satellite phones in the beginning, but quickly became more reliable, smaller, and easier to use. And with the invention of wireless headsets and voice recognition technology, today’s user doesn’t even have to touch the phone to make a call. These are just a few examples of the many ways you use your skills to benefit us all.