Deciding when an assessment is appropriate

HFI PRA assessments can be conducted with varying size and formality. There is no precise algorithm for determining whether HFI PRA assessments should be used on a particular project. This page discusses the project factors that influence whether an assessment is appropriate.

Project Factors that influence use of assessement

In general, if one or more of the factors is significant on a Category A or B project, then a full assessment is likely to be cost-effective, but if only one factor is significant on a Category C or D project, then a initial assessment may be appropriate. However, this is a very rough guideline at the present time.

Project Factor

Description of when an HFI PRA assessment may be appropriate

HFI risks, issues and opportunities prominent in project risk register

If HFI risks, issues, opportunities are prominent in the risk register (e.g. from EHFA).

Human aspects of project whole life cost

Where manpower costs represent a significant proportion of Whole Life Costs, or where the difference between upper and lower manpower cost projections is significant.

Human aspects of system effectiveness

Where individual or Collective Performance measures make a significant contribution to system effectiveness.

Changing organisational environment in the context of use

Where the organisational environment in the system context of use is changing as the armed services evolve at an increased rate (e.g. changed use of reserves, evolving branch structures, increased contractorisation).

Changing operational environment in the context of use

Where operational requirements have placed an inherent need for flexibility (an attribute traditionally supplied by the human element).

Changing technical environment in the context of use

Where the range of equipments that users interact with is undergoing technical change, increasing the difficulty of managing equipment common features and integration from the user point of view.

Use of COTS (hardware or software) originally developed for a different context of use.

Where there may be a gap between the context of use that formed the COTS design case and the context of use envisaged in the procurement. A maturity assessment may well be expected to focus on the processes involved in defining context of use and in analysing the gap.

System being acquired has complex interactions with other systems

Where there is ‘close coupling’ between the system being acquired and other systems, especially as regards interactions between human and machine elements, and where overall performance is driven by the wholistic interaction of systems rather than a simple sum.

Compressed project timescales

Where the timescale has been compressed and makes demands on Concurrent Engineering, so that requirements may not be fully decomposed before (sub)-contracts are placed, or where evaluation at one level may be concurrent with system design at another level.

Complex supply chain

Where the length or complexity of the supply chain poses difficulty in decomposing user requirements and constraints or transmitting HFI risks, issues or opportunities in a timely manner.

Lack of supplier HFI experience

Where suppliers who hold significant HFI risks, issues or opportunities lack established HFI processes or expertise.

Partnering initiatives

Where the IPT wishes to strengthen partnering arrangements and to improve cross-stakeholder processes. HFI represents many of the key processes that cut across stakeholders.

Non-prescriptive requirements

Where, in order to maximise design flexibility, to make best use of new technology and to transfer risk to industry, MoD has moved away from prescriptive requirements which specify design content towards functional requirements aimed at specifying the military capability required.