Research Expertise in

Occupational Psychology and Human Factors


Gain unprecedented insight

Our team is committed to helping you tackle the challenges related to human factors with a robust approach based on scientific methods and knowledge. 

At the heart of our approach is genuine collaboration, where we are committed to gaining a deep understanding of your unique context, needs and challenges. We work hand-in-hand with you to co-design a project aimed at collecting valuable data on which we then co-develop potential actions. By combining these insights with your expertise in the unique context of your organisation, we will design recommendations and propose interventions tailored to address your specific challenges. 

Our commitment to partnerships and the impact of our team’s work is reflected in the recent Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) Panel, where the University of Hull achieved impressive results overall. Read more about this here. 


Work-related Stress

Work-related Fatigue

Safety Climate


Managing the risks to work-related stress 

The Health and Safety Executive defines stress as the situation where people feel that they can’t cope with the amount of pressure, demands and other types of issues placed upon them. Stress is an individual experience in the sense that what may affect someone may not affect another person. It is not a sign of weakness; everybody can, at some point, feel overwhelmed regardless of our gender, age, occupation and role. 

The associated costs of poorly managed work-related stress include sickness absence (mental health difficulties such as stress, anxiety or depression play an important role in short and long-term absence), increased turnover and poorer performance.

Work-related stress sickness absence explained 18.5 million lost working days in 2022 (ONS). 

As part of an employer’s legal duty of care, employers should identify, control and manage the workplace factors linked to work-related stress. We assist organisations in the identification and assessment of these risk factors that are specific to their context and activities. Based on our extensive expertise within the field, we have developed a unique preventative approach that allows addressing the root causes of work-related stress in your organisation. Learn about our approach by exploring our offer 

Explore one of our projects about work-related stress 

Managing the risks to work-related fatigue


The experience of fatigue is common to all workers in all workplaces.  Fatigue is a natural consequence of wakefulness and effort, and results from work factors such as disruption to sleep and intense or prolonged demands. It is characterised by subjective feelings of tiredness and aversion to further expansion of effort. Fatigue often results in impaired cognitive functioning and a tendency towards riskier behaviour.  

These characteristic changes in behaviour associated with fatigue can explain accidents and near misses and can also lead to severely damaging consequences in high-hazard work environments. For example, many major international health and safety incidents can be linked to operator fatigue. Furthermore, there is growing evidence of the impact of cumulative fatigue on longer-term health, including increased risks of gastrointestinal disorders, diabetes, fertility and burnout.  

Consequently, work-related fatigue is a key topic in managing worker health, safety and wellbeing. However, this state (and how to effectively manage it) is not typically well understood.   

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) stipulate that organisations should have a Fatigue Management Plan (FMP) in place. Typical organisational approaches to meeting this requirement are to design shift patterns and sleep opportunities for workers that follow current shift planning recommendations.  However, our approach to fatigue is based on a multidimensional model of fatigue, with an understanding of the broad range of different causes and consequences associated with the fatigue state.   

The “sleep calculator” approach which currently dominates is not sufficient to fully manage the risks of fatigue, particularly in high hazard or safety critical work environments. Most fatigue management plans don’t incorporate the many other factors that can influence fatigue in employees, such as mental, physical and emotional demands associated with the work.  

Our approach to fatigue management considers a broader range of risks, and we assist organisations in addressing these various risks by offering services like our fatigue risk assessment survey, fatigue exploration, fatigue training for frontline workers and decision makers and gap analysis programs. Find out more about our range of services in this domain here  

Explore one of our projects about work-related fatigue 


Enhancing safety culture

Here at the Centre of Human Factors we are committed to creating healthier and safer working environments.  Health and safety specialists have long understood the importance of attitudes and behaviours in maintaining a safe working environment; we know that good safety goes well beyond policies and formal processes.   

Driving positive attitudes and behaviours is a core topic for human factors researchers and practitioners.  As human factors psychologists, we can utilise our in-depth understanding of human psychology to explain safety-related behaviour and then design tools and interventions that support positive shifts in safety culture.   

Our applied approach to enhancing safety culture builds on the well-established HSE Safety Climate Tool.  We strongly support the use of this tool to assess safety climate, so organisations can identify areas of strength and development need in health and safety management, as well as benchmarking their performance on key safety domains.  However, our approach extends this tool through a comprehensive qualitative and quantitative analysis of the unique organisational factors influencing your safety culture.   

We can support you in meeting your duty of care to your people and achieving ambitious aspirations for a safer and healthier future. 

Explore one of our projects about safety  

We’re here to help you prioritise health, safety and wellbeing interventions that make a real difference and have long-term impact on your people and your organisation.

Find out how we can help you