Abstract : Mechanical engineering design processes are often technology-centered and have difficulties to integrate user's behaviour in term of using the product adequately. This problem is encountered along the whole life cycle of a project, and is especially noticeable during the early design phase. Although, industry and academia agree that human aspects are important for the success of the product, there are few methods that support the designers concerning these factors in the synthesis part of the design works. Mechanical engineering design is connected with human behaviours targeted at and eventually leading to the development of the product. These behaviours take place all over the product lifecycle. In order to improve product performance, our research carefully thinks out a piece of research linking the user cantered and functional engineering design approached into an integrated package. It aims to a better integration of product and user behaviour during the early design phase. Designers have been obliged to set aside their dreams of a 100% machine due to the vitalrequirement of the user to perform some definite tasks with machines. While machine productivity and use conditions are the main reasons for automating production systems, human intervention on such systems remains a critical need and the tasks performed by the user remain poorly defined at the early design stage. The focus of this research is the development and evaluation of a top-down technical and socio-technical framework for engineering design, which integrates various knowledge bases and the task model. The rationale behind such a framework is to develop a behavioural design approach not in a technology-centered approach, but with a socio-technical approach, in order to help designers to optimize the product performance through taking into account using conditions and requirements during the early design phase. We propose here a design approach that integrates user's and system's behavioural data as design specifications. We attempt to provide seamless integration means by merging engineering data and user-centered data within the engineer's toolkit. Otherwise, classical user-centered approach may seem difficult to handle by the whole design team : in this respect, this work provides a formal integration model in the framework in mechanical engineering design. This paper covers the multi-trade engineering design, and deals with the development of a behavioural design approach to help designers to optimize the product performance in the early design phase through taking into account utilization conditions and requirements. Finally, a software application is in development to support and allow a systematic utilization of the "behavioural design approach" by integrating it into the daily work of the designer.