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03 August 2018

FSB Wales Blog - August Business of the Month – K Sharp

Human Factors and Human Sciences research firm, K Sharp, specialise in research, analysis and consultancy in the defence sector, and work on a number of projects for UK Defence and Government, as well as other companies and organisations. This innovative and truly unique firm take on a number of projects to make many of the tasks10346440_659758164108781_6633941045220521993_n that we do every day without thinking twice just that – tasks that we as humans can do without thinking about how to complete them most effectively. Human Factors enable us to carry out tasks – sometimes incredibly critical, time sensitive actions – in the most safe and effective way.

So how do human science researchers do this? Human Factors is about understanding how people think, feel and interact in order to predict how they will do it in the future. By understanding how we will act and react to different things, K Sharp are able to provide products and services that will make the product or service much more user friendly and intuitive and overall more engaging for the end user.

Founded in 2011 by husband and wife team Barry and Amanda Kirby, K Sharp was initially established in Gloucester, but moved its head office to Llanelli early in 2018, whilst still keeping its base in Gloucestershire. This move has enabled the business to shift into a new market, as well as widen their network across the UK.

26991904_1550343258383596_6543647136305278383_nWhat is the passion behind this business? Barry, Amanda and their team are passionate about technology, and analysing how people use technology in order to help improve how they interact with their systems, the tools that they use and the environment that they work in. K Sharp is a very future-facing business, and is committed to adopting new technology, automation and artificial intelligence in order to continue to build their business.

The team are currently working on projects such as CRiB (Crowd Resilience through iBeacons) where they are leading a Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) funded project in a response to the Manchester Arena and Westminster Bridge incidents.  Spearheading the use of mobile technologies to influence the behaviours of people in crisis situations, the project aims to help influence human behaviour during highly charged events.  They are also supporting the development of the new nuclear Deterrent, Dreadnought.

In the past few years they have competed research projects in the Cyber domain looking30127214_1625475180870403_450761881481641984_n at the effects and influence of social media campaigns as well as the application of synthetic environments for improving training effectiveness.

K Sharp also have a number of Partnerships that it aims to build upon, such as the UK Digital Retail Innovation Centre (UK:DRIC) that is due to open later in 2018.  The firm are also passionate about women working in STEM; the majority of their team are female, and they are seeking to encourage more women and girls to consider a career or training in STEM in Wales.

This truly dynamic team are already making their mark on South Wales, and will no doubt continue to do so in the coming months and years.