Other Services

UCDS offers a full line of consulting services to evaluate your current plant condition, make realistic and achievable recommendations for improvement and aid you in implementing our recommendations. To complement our standard services we offer other engineering services to aid clients in implementing best practices at their sites. The following is a list of these services that we can provide:

Console Design

User Centered Design Services will evaluate your current operational needs and design new or revamped consoles or off-work stations that fully integrate the latest in human factor engineering, ergonomics, and EEMUA and ASM Best Practices. This service is included in a Control Building Detailed Design engagement.

Feasibility Studies:

User Centered Design Services can help you begin the process of determining if your automation upgrade project is feasible. We can bring our extensive expertise to your site to help determine the needs of your facility, the scope of the project, the best way to integrate Best Practice solutions, and the most cost effective solution. We perform this study with the aim of developing a justification to aid in your Front End Loading process.

Automation Upgrade Consultation:

User Centered Design Services has had experience with a tremendous number of control upgrade projects. We can provide an expert independent evaluation of the pro’s and con’s of upgrade concepts and aid the Client in selecting the most appropriate upgrade approach for the site. Since we have no alliances with any vendor, but work well with all of them, you can be assured of an unbiased evaluation.

Architect and Vendor Evaluation:

User Centered Design Services also has had experience with a wide variety of Architects and control component vendors. We provide an expert independent evaluation of Architects, instrument and control vendors, I&E contractors, graphic implementers, advanced application software vendors, operations and business support software, control console and furniture vendors, overview screen technology suppliers, and plant communication equipment suppliers. Since we have no alliances with vendors of these products or services, but work well with all of them, you can be assured of an unbiased evaluation.

Expert Witness:

If you find yourself in need of expert testimony User Centered Design Services can help. As a recognized expert in the field of safety systems and human factors, Ian Nimmo is available to assist you in your legal efforts.


If you’re looking for more detail than a Workshop, User Centered Design Services can come to your site and provide detailed training for your personnel on all aspects of ASM Best Practices. Typical training topics include Control Building Projects, Alarm Management, Human-Computer Interface, and Human Factors. Custom training is available on request. Through our training partner, TTS, we can offer training on any topic of interest in a production facility to any level of the organization from Management to Operators.

Job Task Analysis:

User Centered Design Services will provide an analytical process for determining the specific behaviors required of humans in operator-machine systems. This involves determining the detailed performance required of people and equipment, and determining the effects of environmental conditions, malfunctions and other unexpected events on both. We analyze the behavioral steps to be performed by people within in terms of

1) Information presented to, and received by, the workers;

2) Their processing of that information (and previously stored information, goals, intentions, etc.) to interpret the system status and to decide what action, if any, to take; and

3) Required worker inputs to the system, which include other workers as well as the equipment.

Custom Services:

As a small responsive consulting company, we pride ourselves on personalized treatment of each Client. If you see something in our briefs or on our Web site that interests you, but it’s not exactly what you had in mind, we are happy to customize any of our services to fit your needs and your budget. Please contact us to discuss how we can help your facility achieve Operations Excellence.

© 2013 User Centered Design Services


UCDS has in-depth experience in designing control rooms and modifying existing field shelters. Our process is compliant with the ISO 11064 Ergonomic Design Standard for Control Buildings. We interview management, supervision and a significant group of the operators to understand functional requirements, what works well in the existing environment, and identification and correction of problems with the existing design. To learn more Click Here


Situation Awareness

Abnormal situations encompass a range of events outside the “normal” plant operating modes, e.g. trips, fires, explosions, toxic releases or just not reaching planned targets. In the past incidents such as Piper Alpha, Milford Haven, Flixborough, Texas City and the 2003 northeast electrical blackout have all been attributed, at least in part, to a fundamental lack of good situational awareness. Early work of the Abnormal Situation Management Consortium® included a survey of the US petrochemical industry. Based on their research the consortium estimates industry losses of around $20 billion per year from abnormal situations, approximately equal to the total annual profits of that industry. Furthermore these studies indicate that companies achieving Best Practices in operations can improve productivity by 5-12%. To learn more Click Here


Fatigue Alertness Management

We have many customers looking to enhance their shift handover procedures and follow some of the Recommended Practices identified in the API documents; others are focusing attention on fatigue and fatigue countermeasures. We have great solutions for both these topics. For more details please contact Steve Maddox. To learn more Click Here



User Centered Design Services promotes Behavior – Based Safety which is a process that helps employees identify and choose safe behavior over an unsafe one. Safety in the workplace is a combination of three measurable components – the person their environment, and their behavior. To learn more Click Here

About the Control Room Operator Performance Group

The purpose of this group is to share ideas and solutions that contribute to improving the performance of the control room operator. Abnormal situations can be managed safely and effectively if we provide our operators with the right training, workload, environment, and interfaces.