Optimal approaches to the quality control checking of product labels

Journal article


Smith-Spark, JH, Katz, HB, Wilcockson, TDW and Marchant, A (2018). Optimal approaches to the quality control checking of product labels. International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics. 68, pp. 118-124.
AuthorsSmith-Spark, JH, Katz, HB, Wilcockson, TDW and Marchant, A
Abstract

Quality control checkers at fresh produce packaging facilities occasionally fail to detect incorrect information presented on labels. Despite being infrequent, such errors have significant financial and environmental repercussions. To understand why label-checking errors occur, observations and interviews were undertaken at a large packaging facility and followed up with a laboratory-based label-checking task. The observations highlighted the dynamic, complex environment in which label-checking took place, whilst the interviews revealed that operatives had not received formal training in label-checking. On the laboratory-based task, overall error detection accuracy was high but considerable individual differences were found between professional label-checkers. Response times were shorter when participants failed to detect label errors, suggesting incomplete checking or ineffective checking strategies. Furthermore, eye movement recordings indicated that checkers who adopted a systematic approach to checking were more successful in detecting errors. The extent to which a label checker adopted a systematic approach was not found to correlate with the number of years of experience that they had accrued in label-checking. To minimize the chances of label errors going undetected, explicit instruction and training, personnel selection and/or the use of software to guide performance towards a more systematic approach is recommended.

Keywordsquality control; visual inspection; human error; 1106 Human Movement And Sports Science; 1117 Public Health And Health Services; Human Factors
Year2018
JournalInternational Journal of Industrial Ergonomics
Journal citation68, pp. 118-124
PublisherElsevier
ISSN0169-8141
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1016/j.ergon.2018.07.003
Publication dates
Print17 Jul 2018
Publication process dates
Deposited11 Jul 2018
Accepted09 Jul 2018
Accepted author manuscript
License
CC BY-NC-ND 4.0
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https://openresearch.lsbu.ac.uk/item/86q0x

Accepted author manuscript

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