chapter  3
18 Pages

Pre-Task Analysis

ByManoj S. Patankar, James C. Taylor

This chapter argues that there are a multitude of pre-task symptoms that need to be recognized and managed effectively in order to minimize the probability of errors. It provides some examples of how lack of knowledge, lack of tools/equipment, time pressure, and ineffective shift-turnover can contribute toward errors. The chapter presents preparation, work management, and communication as the three fundamental elements of pre-task analysis. The basics of preparation include self-assessment of intellectual and physical capabilities and availability of resources. The perspective of pre-task preparation, the key areas of emphasis are as follows: knowledge/skill level, adequacy of resources such as maintenance instructions, tools, parts, equipment, number of distractions, level of time pressure, and physical fatigue. Aircraft mechanics are often considered 'resourceful'—they are adept at performing work without the best tools, sometimes by manufacturing their own special tools. Work management is a term used to describe the overall monitoring and execution of the work without taking undue risk.