Title: Cognitive mapping links human factors to corporate strategies

Authors: Judy Village; Filippo A. Salustri; W.P. Neumann

Addresses: Human Factors Engineering Lab, Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Ryerson University, 350 Victoria St., Toronto, Ontario, M5B 2K3, Canada ' Human Factors Engineering Lab, Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Ryerson University, 350 Victoria St., Toronto, Ontario, M5B 2K3, Canada ' Human Factors Engineering Lab, Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Ryerson University, 350 Victoria St., Toronto, Ontario, M5B 2K3, Canada

Abstract: Human factors (HF) can improve business performance. Our objective is to harness individual tacit knowledge from senior directors about human factors as it relates to strategic goals and to make explicit their shared managerial thinking with an aim to identifying improvement opportunities using HF. Individual cognitive maps were drawn during one-hour interviews with seven senior directors of a large electronics firm. The maps were then merged on a common strategic goal of 'improving quality' into a group map containing 221 concepts and 900 loops. In a two hour workshop with the directors, reducing fatigue, improving systems design, and reducing repetitive activities were concepts that emerged as critical-to-quality. Workshop discussions identified untapped improvement opportunities. Directors viewed the maps as a dynamic indicator of their HF performance. Making the connection between HF and strategic goals explicit can help an organisation identify opportunities to improve human, and therefore business, performance. [Received 4 April 2013; Revised 12 June 2013; Revised 20 June 2013; Accepted 9 July 2013]

Keywords: macroergonomics; participatory ergonomics; tacit knowledge; electronics manufacturing; business improvement; cognitive mapping; human factors; corporate strategies; business strategy; fatigue; systems design; repetitive activities; quality improvement.

DOI: 10.1504/EJIE.2016.075126

European Journal of Industrial Engineering, 2016 Vol.10 No.1, pp.1 - 20

Available online: 03 Mar 2016 *

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