Featured Speakers

Presenters with accomplished background, experience and expertise in the selected area as well as the field of ergonomics are invited by the Applied Ergonomics Conference chairs to present on a specific topic that is of interest to attendees. Featured speakers for each of the 2020 conference focus areas are highlighted in the program.

During these sessions, participants will hear about the strategies, tactics, successes, challenges and results from the speakers. No advance registration is required.

Tuesday, March 17

8 - 8:40 a.m.

How to Leverage Wearables, Objective Risk Data, and Work’s Compensation Metrics to Create a Business Case for Proactive Ergonomics Programs
Recent published US government labor statistics reveal, for the first time in history, there are more jobs than people to fill them. There also an alarming trend that employees are leaving jobs at the highest rates in 20 years. At the same time, the WHO organization publishing data the Work-related Musculoskeletal Disorders rank second worldwide in curbing “years of productive life.” Combined with Worker’s Compensation premiums increasing, company leaders are looking for sophistical ways to offset the pain of increased cost. A forward-looking ergonomics approach can help you achieve long-term, sustainable cost savings, driving employee well-being, while at the same time becoming an employer of choice. The presenter will discuss the following topics: • Integration of Macro ergonomics as a proactive strategy to reduce Total Cost of Risk (TCoR) • Assessing the value of performance data derived from “wearables” and new technologies • Leveraging big data to provide predictive loss dollars and organization KPIs that strength ROI • Addressing the needs of a maturing workplace through ergonomics risk measurement and reduction.

Presenter: Scott Smith, Aon Insurance Brokers
Scott Smith is a CPE, Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and the Director of Ergonomics for Aon’s Global Risk Consulting group. He is responsible for managing and leading Aon’s US based ergonomics team and delivering client specific ergonomics services that are designed to reduce risk and produce long-term results related to Total Cost of Risk reduction.

Thursday, March 19

8:30 - 9:30 a.m.

Profitability: How Ergonomics Can Impact ROI in the Construction Industry
The cost of doing business requires employers to examine productivity and efficiencies. The Motion is Money process integrates principles of ergonomics with the concepts of lean construction. The focus of the presentation deals with increasing productivity, enhancing workers efficiency, improving bottom line profitability, and reducing jobsite exposures. The Motion is Money methodology examines how walking, bending, reaching, lifting, lowering and carrying are overlooked and never seen on a jobsite. These movements cost time and money and no one measures these movements. We will discuss how to measure these activities and success stories of reducing labor hours and the cost of completing job tasks and the overall project.

Presenter: Brian Roberts, CNA
Brian Roberts is AVP, Workers Compensation and Auto Services, He earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Occupational Safety and Health from West Virginia University of Technology. Mr. Roberts is a Certified Safety Professional by the Board of Certified Safety Professionals, Certified Industrial Ergonomist by the Board at the Oxford Research Institute, Registered Risk Engineer by Underwriters Laboratory and a Lean and Six Sigma Green Belt.

10 - 10:55 a.m.

NeuroErgonomics: A New Frontier in the Evaluation of Work with Applications Ranging from Modern Office Solutions to Exoskeletons
Neuroergonomics has been an instrumental approach for Ergonomics and Human Factors professionals to understand, evaluate, predict, and improve elements of human performance (such as workload, training, stress, and fatigue) in several work domains. This presentation will introduce the need for such mind-body evaluations, current pros and cons of neuroergonomic evaluations in applied work settings, and discussion of emerging neuroergonomics metrics (i.e., functional connectivity, neural efficiency) to quantify human experience and performance in the design, test, and implementation processes for ergonomic products, ranging from sit-stand desks to exoskeletons. The importance of neuroergonomic evaluations in facilitating equitable ergonomic designs for different groups of workers (e.g., gender, age) will also be discussed. 

Presenter: Ranjana Mehta, Texas A&M University
Ranjana Mehta is an Associate Professor in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Texas A&M University. She is also a graduate faculty with the Texas A&M Institute for Neuroscience at Texas A&M University, director of the NeuroErgonomics Laboratory, co-director of the Texas A&M Ergonomics Center, and a faculty fellow with the Center for Population Health and Aging and the Center for Remote Health Technologies and Systems. She received her MS and PhD from Virginia Tech, MEng from University at Buffalo, and BE from Mumbai University.

She is the recipient of the 2019 AEC Creativeness in Ergonomics Practitioner of the Year Award.