Hand operating a machine

Difi (the Norwegian Agency for Public Management and eGovernment): Machine requirements

Human labour is being replaced by machines. The Norwegian standard NS 11002 helps people with different requirements to obtain equal access to machines. The target group is people who manufacture and order machines.

We put money in ticket machines in car parks, we take money out of cash machines and we purchase tickets and goods from machines. However, without good standards this is not a matter of course for many people.

"I hear about people parking their cars, but are unable to reach the ticket machine from their wheelchairs. Social developments are heading towards more self-service. We are becoming our own administrators to a greater degree. Consequently design for all in respect of machines is absolutely essential. It means that everyone should have equal opportunities for operating them," says Mokhtar Eliassi at the Norwegian Agency for Public Management and eGovernment (Difi).

The Regulation for universal design of ICT solutions came into force on 1 July 2013. This means that items should be designed so that they can service the requirements of people with various types of functional abilities. The same solutions should be appropriate for all target groups. The regulation regulate among other self-service machines. Standards Norway has prepared a report which identifies the standards which apply to self-service technology. It was concluded that one functional overall standard should be developed in addition to special standards for different technologies and self-service machines. Standards Norway has been responsible for a standardisation project which resulted in NS 11022 becoming such an overall standard.

Easier for everyone
This standard applies to electronic machines. The physical design and function of such machines is important, and there should be a good interaction between the machine and the user. People with different requirements should have equal access to being able to use such machines. Physical goods should be dispensed in a satisfactory manner and it should be easy to have a service provided.

The physical design requirements comprise among other operational height, information on the machine, physical access, sound and lighting. A good interaction comprises text, colours, contrasts, symbols, screen, light markings and payment functions. The signs on such machines must be good. They must be placed so that people with impaired functional abilities can use them.

"The benefits of using self-service solutions are numerous. Users can select when and where they want a service to be provided on their own. They obtain easier access to information and services. This is conditional on the solution in question being in compliance with good standards and being user-friendly for everyone," says Mokhtar Eliassi at Difi.

Original text in Norwegian: Siv Ellen Omland, Empower Communication
Picture: Nicolas Tourrenc

Last updated: 2014-11-24