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Human Factors Undergraduate Industry Placement

What’s the opportunity?

An exciting opportunity for an adaptable and enthusiastic undergraduate looking to develop their Human Factors (HF) skills and knowledge. You will play a vital role in a team considered to be an industry leader in Human Factors Integration (HFI).

The MBDA Early Careers Programme is designed to ensure you have real responsibility and input to projects during your time here. The Human Factors Function works across a variety of projects allowing you to apply and develop your skills across a diverse range of scenarios; gaining wide-ranging, hands-on experience in the application of Human Factors within the defence sector.

What will you be doing?

You will carry out day-to day engineering activities with significant guidance and support. These activities include the use of CAD software to analyse how human operators interact with the weapon systems and whether the design of the system permits efficient operation. You will also be providing support to more senior Human Factors colleagues in project and research work. Your efforts will be directly used in support of on-going development programmes and may also include participation in trials and experimentation events.

You will have the opportunity of carrying out technical investigations under guidance, in order to provide recommendations for problem assessment and the construction of design improvements. The design work conducted will be in line with Human Factors technical standards and guidance documentation.

Specific technical activities that recent candidates have been involved in include:

  • Anthropometric modelling using JACK software
  • Workload analysis
  • Situational Awareness assessments
  • Manual handling trials
  • HCI/HMI design
  • Virtual Reality

You will be working within one of the largest Human Factors Teams within the UK defence industry. Our team is highly experienced and come from diverse backgrounds. You will have the opportunity to work alongside and learn from some of the most experienced Human Factors practitioners in the UK, within a highly supportive and structured environment.

Any necessary training and support will be provided by experienced engineers within the department and project teams

Experience working with Military Personnel

  • The Human Factors team has developed an excellent working relationship with military user groups. You will be working closely with military users in order to gain insight and feedback on MBDA product solutions. This exposure will allow you to gain a further insight to the defence world and help you to develop your understanding of the many aspects which are of interest to HF; including military roles, use of equipment and processes.

Access to the latest equipment and technologies

  • The company uses advanced technology in its weapon systems to meet the current and future needs of the armed forces in the land, sea and air domains.
  • The Human Factors department actively research the capabilities of emerging commercial-off –the –shelf technology to meet these current and future requirements.
  • These technologies are used to conceptualise and create designs for future weapon systems.


  • You will have a real influence on active projects. It is both rewarding and motivating to see your inputs carried forward into final designs.

International Travel

  • While MBDA’s leading Human Factors capability is based in the UK, Human Factors continues to develop across the company and on multinational projects providing the potential for international travel in order to promote the sharing and development of Human Factors Integration best practice.

What’s great about joining this team?

You will be joining a highly experienced team with a variety of different backgrounds. While team members work across a variety of different projects, the team hold regular informal meetings to share what they are involved in and any issues or points of interest. This provides the opportunity to get useful feedback and support from the team and gives you the chance to learn about different project work being conducted within the department.

The department social events always go down well; these are a great opportunity to get to know the team outside of the office. Previously we have had themed nights such as “Come Dine with Me” and Christmas Cocktails.

Who and what we are looking for from you?

Applicants should:

  • Be working towards a minimum 2:2 honours degree (or equivalent qualification) in a related discipline (e.g. Ergonomics, Human Factors, Psychology, Systems Engineering).
  • Have an ambition to work with the Human Factors Domain within the defence industry.
  • Be able to adapt well to changing goals and requirements.
  • Have great interpersonal skills and be able to integrate well within a team.
  • Have the ability to use own intuition to work out the best or most suitable course of action.
  • Be competent in the use of Microsoft office applications e.g. Word, Excel, PowerPoint.

Desirable skills:

  • Understanding of Human Factors Integration processes.
  • Experience in anthropometric modelling and CAD software.
  • Experience in the use of Virtual Reality technology
  • Experience in HCI prototyping tools (e.g. Axure) and basic software skills would be an advantage.

Why you should come and work at MBDA

MBDA, a world leader in missiles and missile systems, is a multi-national group with over 10,000 employees on industrial facilities in France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and a presence in the United States. With some of the most sophisticated technology in defence, MBDA offers a wide range of advanced weapon systems for maritime Superiority, Air Dominance, Ground Based Air Defence and Battlefield Engagement.

  • We work with over 90 armed forces, successfully integrating our systems onto multiple platforms.
  • Has a technology pedigree that allows innovative and responsive products to be created year upon year
  • Our success is based on the dedication of our people and we strive to offer each and every employee an enjoyable, challenging and rewarding career
  • MBDA is ranked 12th in the Sunday Times Top 30 Best Big Companies to Work For, demonstrating successful growth and high levels of employee retention.
  • Our work is complex, challenging and innovative. It takes a range of professionals across the full engineering and commercial spectrum to carry it out. Whatever field our people specialise in, they all share the same mind-set: a drive to make things work better and to redefine the established standards

What would you get?

£18,000 Salary, flexible working hours, paid overtime, a comprehensive pension scheme, employee funded voluntary private healthcare, sporting activities, fantastic site facilities, a share of the annual Company Bonus and superb learning and development opportunities.

Please note thatin order to apply for MBDA UK opportunities you will need to be eligible forSC (Secret Level) UK Security Clearance.

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