Human Systems Integration (HSI) is “the System Engineering process and program management effort that provides integrated and comprehensive analysis, design, and assessment of requirements, concepts, and resources for human factors engineering, manpower, personnel, training, safety and occupational health, force protection and survivability, and habitability” (DoDI 5000.95).

These HSI domains are interrelated and interdependent and must be among the primary drivers of effective, efficient, affordable, and safe system designs. HSI integrates and facilitates trade-offs among these domains and other systems engineering and design domains but does not replace individual domain activities, responsibilities, or reporting channels (source: DAU).

The goal of HSI is to ensure that human performance is optimized to increase total system performance (TSP) and minimize total system ownership costs (TOC). Incorporating HSI early in system design promotes more successful and effective transition of capability to the warfighter.

DoD Directive (DoDD) 5000.01, The Defense Acquisition System (DAS) (OUSD(A&S) September 2020) states:

“Human systems integration planning will begin in the early stages of the program life cycle. The goal will be to optimize total system performance and total ownership costs, while ensuring that the system is designed, operated, and maintained consistent with mission requirements.” (DoD Directive 5000.01)

The corresponding instruction, DoDI 5000.02, Operation of the Adaptive Acquisition Framework (OUSD(A&S) January 2020) states:

“The AAF supports the DAS (Defense Acquisition System) with the objective of delivering effective, suitable, survivable, sustainable, and affordable solutions to the end user in a timely manner.” (DoDI 5000.02)

HSI in Functional Policy and Guidance

Learn how HSI activity is incorporated into functional policy and guidance.




The OUSD(R&E) Engineering of Defense Systems Guidebook (2022) and Systems Engineering Guidebook (2022) replace the former DAG Chapter 3 and include considerations relating to HSI.

Links to these and other guides are available on the OUSD(R&E) Engineering References for Program Offices web page (ENG References).


people looking at drawing on dry-erase board

DoD HSI Policy

DoDI 5000.95 incorporates and cancels Enclosure 7 of DoD Instruction 5000.02T, “Operation of the Defense Acquisition System,” January 7, 2015, as amended.

This issuance establishes policy, assigns responsibilities, and prescribes procedures for:

  • Human systems integration (HSI) in the Defense Acquisition System.
  • HSI domains, integration, implementation, and reporting across the DoD acquisition enterprise for personnel responsible for the development, testing, production, training, operations, and sustainment of defense acquisition programs.

Human Systems Integration Guidebook

This guidebook addresses Human Systems Integration (HSI) in DoD acquisition.

The HSI Guidebook replaces the former Defense Acquisition Guidebook (DAG) Chapter 5, “Manpower Planning and Human Systems Integration.”

HSI seeks to consider the human element in all phases of system acquisition and can provide significant benefits including improved use of manpower, reduced training costs, reduced maintenance time, and improved user acceptance.

For each of seven DoD HSI domains, the guide provides best practices and explains how HSI can help minimize total ownership cost (TOC) and optimize total system performance (TSP).

The JHSISC chartered the Joint HSI Working Group (JHSIWG) in 2012 as a Cross-Service collaboration forum for defense and federal agencies to develop recommendations for DoD HSI planning, policy, and guidance; oversee and encourage effective and proactive HSI process management; and support the DoD HSI initiatives.

The JHSIWG conducted an HSI needs analysis, resulting in a Capabilities-Based Assessment (CBA) that addresses the following:

  • Institutionalize an HSI body of knowledge
  • Standardize HSI best practices across the Services
  • Develop career certification and career paths/billets for HSI workforce supported by a persistent training function
  • Provide and maintain tools, databases, and processes to support HSI analyses early in acquisition
  • Implement a professional, coordinated HSI outreach and marketing function

The HSI Body of Knowledge (BoK) is published and curated online through multiple sources. See summary of BoK updates.

Strategic Direction

Continuously and cost-effectively improve HSI program development and execution to positively impact warfighter performance and safety across the HSI enterprise to achieve Joint Force advantages

Prioritize and recommend HSI research and application to have multi-Service impact on joint interest acquisition programs

Strengthen human performance research into DoD acquisition programs

Provide HSI recommendations on matters related to all HSI domains for weapon system programs


The HSI community works to address the CBA and supports S&T capability development areas such as the following:


Human‐machine designs for mission effectiveness and optimal Warfighter interactions


Inclusion of machine learning and artificial intelligence for advanced teaming


Sensory, cognitive, and physical workload impacts to Warfighter performance and measurement approaches to assess and improve team effectiveness and survivability for multi‐domain operations


Assessment, education, and training advancements, to include synthetic environments

All Partners Access Network (APAN)

Private communities exist to share HSI content with stakeholders.

Submit a request for access to:

Note: Request for access requires written justification and supervisor point of contact information to confirm need to know.


Send an email to Engineering/HSI


Office of the Under Secretary of Defense,
Research and Engineering (USD(R&E))
The Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301