Implications of Human Reliability Analysis for Human Readiness Levels
Authors: Ronald Boring
Abstract: Technology readiness levels (TRLs) were developed to gauge the maturity of new technologies. TRLs are effective for determining suitability for procurement and guiding the evolution of novel research and development efforts from the conceptual stage, through demonstration, to implementation and deployment. A recent augmentation to TRLs is human readiness levels (HRLs). HRLs are anchored to human factors and map suitability for human use. A low HRL may suggest that a technology is early in its human-system interface development, while a high HRL confirms that a technology is fully usable by humans interacting with it. HRLs provide a measure of technology maturity not just according to the hardware or software captured in the TRLs but also the human end users. Ideally, TRLs and HRLs should align, especially as a system reaches maturity and approaches deployment. To date, the relationship between human reliability analysis (HRA) and HRLs has not been explored. HRA seeks to map the rate and nature of human errors when using a system. This paper explores the relationship between human reliability and HRLs. HRA can support the HRL determination by providing acceptable performance criteria and a process for quantifying the appropriate level. HRA can also provide predictive measures to complement empirical usability and maturity assessments.
Keywords: technology readiness level, human readiness level, human reliability analysis
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