Technical System: Concept And Characteristics, Elements, Examples

The technical system is a set made up of machines, processes and human beings through which it is possible to transform elements. The intention is to obtain a specific result, thanks to the application of different strategies generated from said set.

A technical system includes specific technologies, instruments, processes and methods that are put into operation in a predetermined order. The result of the conjugation of all these elements is the development of a product or service.

To a greater or lesser extent, every technical system includes the participation of a human agent. Source:

The main objective of a technical system is to generate a production process that is highly efficient in the economic and technical fields. The human agents that are part of this system can be representatives of different disciplines; This will enrich the process and allow the objectives to be achieved.

The results of a technical system must be capable of being quantitatively measured. In this way, it is possible to evaluate the productivity levels achieved, as well as the quality of the relationships between each of the factors that participate in the system.

Article index

  • one

    Concept and characteristics

  • two

    Elements of a technical system

    • 2.1

      Material elements

    • 2.2

      Human agents

    • 23


    • 2.4


    • 2.5


  • 3


    • 3.1


    • 3.2


    • 3.3


  • 4


  • 5


Concept and characteristics

human technical system

A technical system is that gear of various agents, both material and human, whose main purpose is to carry out production work by transforming elements to respond to specific needs.

Below we will detail the most relevant characteristics of technical systems:

– They are structures that combine components of various kinds, both material and human.

– The purpose of the systems is to make the components that comprise it work together to achieve the desired result.

– At least two components must participate in technical systems.

– They are structured based on productivity. Every technical system seeks to be efficient when producing or transforming the corresponding matter.

– The operation of a technical system has to be measurable, since this will determine how productive it is and what is the quality of the results that are being obtained.

– The participation of one or more human agents is essential. The prominence of people will vary according to the type of technical system.

– In turn, each technical system is made up of a number of subsystems, each with its own production processes.

– Among a set of technical systems related to the same function, the most complex system is considered the main one. Those of less complexity will be subsystems of the primordial one.

– Each element and task associated with the technical system are interconnected with each other. The correct interaction between each element will be key to achieving the expected results.

– In a technical system it is essential to maintain a constant and sharp observation. In this way it is more likely to guarantee the quality of the process as a whole.

– Each subsystem can be upgraded if necessary. The ultimate goal is for the entire gear to deliver the required results; therefore, all the processes associated with the technical system must be able to be analyzed at any time.

– Since productivity is the main objective of a technical system, the modifications that are necessary must be able to be carried out quickly and efficiently.

– All components of a system are interrelated. For this reason, it is necessary to take into account that each change made in one part of the process will have palpable effects in other areas of the system.

– For technical systems to function as a whole, it is necessary that there be some type of energy that allows them to operate. For example, in a system whose components are a person, a key, and a lock, nothing will happen unless the person produces the energy necessary to take the key, put it in the lock, and rotate their hand.

– Technical systems must be functional. They always have a specific objective through which some matter is transformed, a good is produced or a service is delivered.

– In general, technical systems are in effect until they are no longer productive or until a new technology appears that has a better performance.

Elements of a technical system

Both material components and human agents and other types of structures participate in technical systems. Below we will detail the most important characteristics of the main elements that make up a technical system:

Material elements

This notion can have several meanings; On the one hand, a material element corresponds to all that raw material that is used to create a product.

On the other hand, the set of technological components that participate in a certain process, or even the energy that allows the entire system to start up, is also considered a material element.

Human agents

As we mentioned earlier, a technical system absolutely needs a human agent who actively participates. In fact, this is what differentiates a technical system from an apparatus: the second does not need human participation, the first does.

The people who are part of a technical system must have the necessary knowledge to fulfill their role within the production process.

These individuals can interact with the components of the system from different approaches. For example, they can be specialized technicians who start the gear, and they can also be users of a certain service who have the power to activate or deactivate the system.

Depending on their role, there may be one or more people within a technical system. The fundamental thing is that the assigned actions can be properly executed, so that the system maintains its optimal functioning.

For this reason, sometimes it will be necessary to have several people so that the process flows as efficiently as possible.


It is about the specific interactions that allow the proposed results to be obtained. These structures are present in all areas of the system: from material transformation as such to general management, which guarantees that everything flows correctly.

The structures of the technical systems can have automated areas, which will help to increase the efficiency of the processes. Likewise, there needs to be constant observation and monitoring to ensure that the system is working properly.

These structures will depend directly on the functions and results expected from a given technical system; Therefore, each system can have a different structure, fully adapted to your specific needs.


Any technical system must have specific objectives, since it seeks to achieve something concrete. It is necessary to be very clear about the objectives of the system and all the subsystems that compose it, in order to create the most appropriate structure to achieve the goals set.

The ideal is to propose a major main objective that responds to the primary function of the system and a series of secondary objectives, the achievement of which will be essential to obtain favorable final results.


Technical systems are functional, which means that they must necessarily yield concrete and measurable results.

The interaction of the different components of a technical system will determine the results that will be obtained. It is important to be clear that these results will not always coincide with the objectives set; For this reason, it is essential to have a record of the entire process, considering all possible data and measuring each performance.

A technical system is an element that is in constant transformation. Correct registration of procedures will allow constant improvement and obtaining optimal results.



Technical systems of this type establish a link that is characterized by being quite direct. The person or group of people have all the necessary knowledge to carry out the required transformation.

The person can make use of one or more tools that allow him to transform the matter in question, but there is no intervention of elaborate machinery. He has the required technical skill, which is why he can carry out the transformation on his own.


This relationship allows a more efficient and abundant production, since the machine contributes to the system with greater speed in several of the processes that comprise it.

Likewise, the person or group of people are essential to operate the machine and monitor its operation at all times. Machines have a greater participation in the work of transformation and production, but these could not work if it were not for the energy that comes from the human being.


In this case, the results obtained are further away from human agents, since it is a technical system configured in such a way that the entire production process depends on machinery.

Obviously, the human agent must always be in the equation to exercise quality controls and monitor procedures, but in machine-product type systems, people play a secondary role when it comes to raw material transformation.


– The artisanal construction of jewelry pieces is a person-product type system. With the help of complementary tools, a person creates jewelry with their own hands. He is the one who transforms matter to obtain the final result.

– A photocopy service corresponds to a person-machine system. The person must actively activate the different options offered by the copier machine, which will later begin to reproduce a certain material.

– The creation of wooden parts through a laser cutting machine is a machine-product technical system. The human agent gives the initial instruction and monitors the process, but the machine is the one that transforms the matter until the final product is obtained.


  1. “Technical Systems” at Technical Innovation Center. Retrieved on November 1, 2019 from Technical Innovation Center:
  2. “Technical system” in Wikipedia. Retrieved on November 1, 2019 from Wikipedia:
  3. “Concept and structure of the technical system” at Universidad a Distancia de Madrid. Retrieved on November 1, 2019 from Universidad a Distancia de Madrid:
  4. Baxter, G. “Socio-technical systems: From design methods to systems engineering” at Oxford Academy. Retrieved on November 1, 2019 from Oxford Academy:
  5. “Socio-Technical Systems” at Interaction Design Foundation. Retrieved on November 1, 2019 from Interaction Design Foundation:

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