Innovation Challenges

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Reducing the incidence of injury in workers (closed)

This challenge has closed.
Owner: CSIRO
Partners: Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation
Fields of Research: Medical Physiology
Tags: Preventative medicine, Work injury, Predictive analytics, Fast moving consumer goods
Audience: Researchers, Businesses
Anticipated Funding: Read more
Submissions due by 12am (midnight AEST): April 22, 2018
Last Updated: July 6, 2018 12:24 AM
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The Challenge

Work in distribution centres (DCs) is characterised by repetitive lifting and sorting task. Workers spend most of their workday locating and moving boxes onto pallets (called picking) -up to between 8 to 20 tonnes per shift, per person. Despite many precautions taken, these tasks result in injuries. 

One of Australia’s largest supply chain organisations is seeking solutions that can contribute to a sustained reduction in the rate of injuries occurring on the job. A combination of solutions will likely be needed to achieve injury reduction goals. We will entertain a range of potential solutions including, but not limited to: fatigue measurement, predictive analytics and any other technologically-oriented solutions that will help employees avoid injury. We welcome ideas about commercially-available solutions, late-stage ideas that need some further development and testing, or even new research ideas altogether. 

The Incentive

- The chance to work with an ASX 50 firm, one of the largest supply chain organisations in Australia, to develop and potentially commercialise your ideas / technologies

- Create a positive, lasting impact on industry 

- Learn about the business of fast moving consumer goods (FMCG)

 Technical Criteria & Supporting Information


- The solution must fit within the current operational structure of picking (i.e. no changes to work content, employee roles and responsibilities, organisational structures nor infrastructure will be considered). 

- The solution should focus on, and apply to, the individual worker (rather than a system or operational level change –also, see above bullet).

- The solution should be proactive (e.g. predictive, preventative) not reactive or remedial.

Technology already considered

 -The client has considered technologies aimed at tracking, reducing, preventing stress and strain on workers, some of which may still be under consideration.

Additional available data (for successful applicants)

- Historical Injury data (last 5 years)

- Detailed H&S analysis of occupational hazards

- Ancillary needs to support your idea: in responding, please indicate your need for facilities, equipment or resources that may be required to test your idea or demonstrate proof of concept.

 Injury mechanisms, bodily locations

 Mechanisms                                Location               Frequency

Lifting / carrying        29%               Back                          26%

Object handling         22%               Arms                         21%

Repetitive mov’t.       13%               Legs                           17%

Over exertion              6%               Head                          14%

Slips and trips             6%               Hands                        14%

Other                           24%               Other                           8%

Description of picking work

Type                Item wt. (kg)                Cadence (sec)                Height diff. (m)                Carry time (%)                Duration (h)**

 Liquor                     14                                    10-20                              0.1-1.68                                34-65                                   6-10

 Ambient               1-10                                   10-20                              0.1-1.68                                34-65                                   6-10

To Belt                   1-12                                       --                                   0.1-1                                   34-65                                    6-10

To Tote                  1-12                                     3-5                                  0.5-1                                   34-65                                    6-10

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If you have any questions please refer them to:

The Partners

Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation

How to apply

 Please submit your idea by 12 midnight AET April 22, 2018 via our online platform

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