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Judging ergonomics and design

I was again involved in the judging of the Ergonomics Design Award for the Chartered Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors; the fifth time and I think this year’s was the strongest field of contenders I have seen.

The winner was Rolls-Royce for their work developing a new ship’s bridge. The example here is installed in a North Sea oil platform resupply vessel, the Stril Luna owned by Simon Møkster Shipping. I thought there were several commendable things about their approach: clearly operating a vessel in the North Sea in close proximity to other vessels and platforms offers many safety challenges, the ergonomics and design of the bridge is clearly crucial in meeting those challenges. The team’s careful, iterative approach to the design was exemplary.

Moreover their ‘unified’ approach – redesigning all aspects of the workplace (the space, the consoles, “knob & dials” and the software interfaces) – provided the opportunity for a properly user-centred design philosophy in which the safety, effectiveness and comfort of the worker was front and centre.

Lastly, this is an ergonomics design award, it is meant to celebrate the successful marriage of those two contributors. I think this team really understood that not only is the bridge a workplace that needs to be safe, effective and comfortable, but it is also emblematic of the ship, captaincy and operator. This design expresses something very positive about the qualities of each.

Nice piece of work.

Ergonomics - image credit Rolls-Royce

See their Flickr galllery here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/rolls-royceplc/sets/72157657502885974/with/21541207674/

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