Changing the Ergonomics Model for Transfer of New Technologies

Lostetter, Michael F. (Intel, Chandler, AZ)

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Historically, the majority of ergonomics issues at Intel and many other companies have been identified and resolved during and after the ramp up of high-volume manufacturing (HVM) facilities. This is an issue for three reasons: employees are injured before issues are resolved, employee productivity suffers, and millions of dollars are spent correcting the issues. At Intel, these problems have been a result of the resourcing model for EHS being heavily weighted at the manufacturing sites and less so at the development sites. In order to address this problem, an experienced seed ergonomics engineer was assigned ownership of developing and completing the ergonomics deliverables for transferring a new technology. The goal of this resourcing model is to deliver the new technology with no or minimal HVM equipment ergonomics retrofits. The same model was used in parallel for all of the EHS disciplines.Tasks of the Ergonomist included completing proactive ergonomics evaluations to identify SEMI non-compliances, integrating identified issues into supplier corrective action plans for closure prior to HVM, ensuring proper documentation of administrative controls, and identification of and resolution of other potential HVM issues. As many as ten to fifteen ergonomic issues were identified per tool one year prior to HVM startup. This allows up to a year to develop and implement the recommended solutions before an HVM employee has to work on the equipment. Solution development is underway at this time. This is a major improvement to the EHS model and should provide a reduction in injury rates resulting in higher productivity and should nearly eliminate HVM equipment ergonomics retrofits resulting in significant cost reduction.

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