People design, build, maintain and operate every part of the global aviation system, and are responsible for creating and maintaining its safety performance. Human factors (HF) thus affect all aspects of aviation, including design.

Poor design has the potential to cause issues downstream for users. Good design should address the HF relevant to each and every users’ interaction with the system. This includes those users who may not necessarily be the primary focus, for example the person tasked with cleaning it, or the person responsible of assessing it.

It is essential that each part of the system – whether a product, a procedure, or a practice – is designed with usability and maintainability in mind. This means the design suits the context of use and is compatible with the users’ capabilities. Thoughtful design can help reduce errors and ensure users of the system are supported to interact with it safely.

Design considerations

CAA design considerations presentation [PDF 1.5 MB]

CASA video - design and automation(external link)

CASA resource booklet 10 design and automation(external link)

Eurocontrol ATM human factors(external link)

FAA human factors designers(external link)

Human factors considerations in the design and evaluation of flight deck displays and controls(external link)

 Ask us about human factors

If you have any questions about this topic, email humanfactors@caa.govt.nz