Army directorate gets name change aligning it better with its program

April 07, 2015

By Joyce M. Conant, ARL Public Affairs

Story Highlights

  • Army is now focusing its Human Systems Integration efforts to becoming part of a collaborative, joint HSI community of excellence
  • Name change enables HSI to be universally recognized by its acquisition, industry and academic partners
  • A strong HSI program is a part of the cultural change within the Army centered on how we build, strengthen, maintain, and assess individual performance and unit readiness

The U.S. Army Research Laboratory Human Research and Engineering Directorate has supported the Department of the Army G-1 Manpower Personnel Integration, or MANPRINT Directorate since 1986. As of November 1, 2014, the office holds a new title – Human Systems Integration, or HSI Directorate.

"This re-designation will improve our G-1 strategic communications, coordination and technical efforts by clearly identifying the directorate as the Army element in the HSI mission," said Lt. Gen. James McConville, deputy chief of staff, G-1. "It immediately denotes the key role that the G-1 performs in support of putting the human first in system development, design and deployment."

The directorate was established to address the systematic inattention to human issues within Army systems acquisition. The Office of the Secretary of Defense adopted the concept in 1987, and named it Human-Systems Integration. Since then, MANPRINT has successfully worked to comprehensively inform Army capability developers and acquisition program managers about the criticality of addressing the usability of systems throughout their lifecycle.

"After nearly 30 years, MANPRINT achievements have strongly influenced what has emerged as a wide ranging joint-service HSI community of practice. As the other services have taken on the HSI mantle, often adopting lessons learned from MANPRINT, OSD has codified requirement for HSI within the DoDI 5000 acquisition regulations. Now, the term 'MANPRINT,' as an Army HSI identifier, is more a source of confusion than inspiration, and it is no longer effective." said McConville.

McConville said the Army is now focusing its HSI efforts to becoming part of a collaborative, joint HSI community of excellence and that this will enable HSI to be universally recognized by its acquisition, industry and academic partners.

Dr. Michael Drillings, who is the Human Systems Integration Director, indicated that there will be no changes for ARL.

"The name change will result in better communication between the Army HSI program and similar programs in the U.S. and overseas," said Drillings. "The key mission in support of Army HSI remains the same."

Dr. Pam Savage-Knepshield, who oversees the HSI program for ARL, said the program is central to ARL's mission as it 'focuses on ensuring science and technology that transitions to the acquisition community, augments Soldier performance and facilitates Soldier-machine interaction to maximize battlefield effectiveness for land forces.'

"Designing Soldier systems for the battlefield of today, tomorrow and into the future requires a deep understanding of current S&T, future capabilities, and our Soldiers' work including how it is done, why it is done that way, and how it could be done better," said Savage-Knepshield. "The Army HSI Program establishes the policy, responsibilities and requirements for facilitating HRED's ability to gain the knowledge required to develop HSI requirements and design complicated systems with emergent behaviors that adapt and evolve to the Soldier and battlefield conditions. Adopting standard terminology to describe our support and areas of expertise facilitates our ability to dialogue with those in the acquisition and S&T communities."

Equipping Soldiers to be ready for operational missions is a high priority within the Army.

"A strong HSI program is a part of the cultural change within the Army centered on how we build, strengthen, maintain, and assess individual performance and unit readiness. As the proponent for HSI, the G-1 ensures that the practice of Human Systems Integration is a high priority when it comes to equipping our Soldiers to be ready for operational missions," said McConville.

 

Last Update / Reviewed: April 7, 2015