Keywords: human performance rate, performance shaping factors, objective determination, ergonomics, motion analysis, postharvest operations, process times, human factors, work design, HRM, human resources management, internal factors, performance indicators
Indicators for objective determination of internal performance factors during postharvest operations
Work design traditionally focuses on machine capacities, and often neglects the role of people within the production processes. In order to successfully deploy and manage human resources during industrial processing operations (such as horticultural postharvest), adequate knowledge of process times is crucial. These often vary owing to external and internal factors. The internal factors depend on the individual capability and willingness of the worker and cannot be accurately forecasted. Nevertheless, in the present study, it was possible to extract indicators from recorded motion tracks to quantify and assist in improving human performance potential. Actual performance rates showed strong variations in the hourly capacities of two workers, underlying the same factual prerequisites in a re-enacted simple and highly repetitive postharvest operation. Several indicators describing the subjects' performance were defined and compared, including the quantification of motivation, efficiency, precision or coordination.