Logistics Facility Displays and Controls

I evaluated the design and use of technology employed by a logistics company to track and route packages within a facility. I addressed the physical layout and tasks of the primary nodes: functional areas and their associated displays and controls. I examined each component within the framework of a parcel flowing through the facility and the workers using the technology available to them to ensure accuracy and accountability for each package. I used a descriptive functional flow analysis for its comprehensibility to the facility leadership and its ability to pinpoint issues and highlight solutions.
To learn the system in full, I initially applied for a job and was hired as an hourly worker. I took notes, observed workers, and conducted interviews. I learned the metrics used to assess worker and facility performance and focused my attention on the bottlenecks. After two weeks, I went into my manager’s office with a list of preliminary recommendations and safety concerns. I explained the discipline of human factors, my motivations for taking the job, and my side goals while working the regular job. He promoted me to supervisor on the spot, and I gained access to more information and parts of the facility, which widened the scope of the project.
My final product improved the situational awareness of the workers and the management, especially concerning the safety of workers and the efficiency of the overall facility and work stations. I incorporated ergonomic, biomechanical, and cognitive elements to make my recommendations and showed mock-ups of improved displays and work areas. I wrote the report to be understood by the full range of personnel, from introductory level workers up to warehouse managers.
The period of time during which I worked at the facility was known as “peak season” because of the high volume of packages being shipped around fall and winter holidays, so there was not enough time to work on implementing the changes I recommended, but I have maintained a relationship with my former boss and I check in with him periodically to see if he has made any changes based on my recommendations, and what the effects have been. In the future, he may introduce me to the facility engineers and I might be able to more effectively analyze outcomes, or at least get feedback on my ideas from the engineers.