Gone are the days of secluded offices, as employees are finding continued benefits to being more social at work by creating new open place spaces with workstation set ups. As the work environment has progressed over time, we have also come to realise the importance of having ergonomically correct set ups, and balancing our seated time with regular activity to boost heart health and fatigue.
So, what makes a workstation ergonomic?
While this word, 'ergonomic', gets tossed around a lot in working environments, does everyone know what it actually means? It's important that not only the decision maker in charge of reconstructing the workplace knows, but also that the rest of your colleagues understand the benefits and why it can make such a difference to your productivity.
In short, ergonomics involve the correct set up and positioning of your desk; office chair, monitor/laptop, mouse, feet, overall posture, acoustics; lighting, reflection and glare; phone, document holders; keyboard equipment and radiation, speed and length of time typing; wrist support and location of furniture within the room.
Essentially, it's organising your work space to be comfortable, natural, and easy to use in order to prevent:
neck, back and eye strain
muscle aches and pains
lagging productivity, creativity and mood.
While ergonomics are trendy in the #workplacewellness scene, it's something that according to Work Safe, every company should consider. Not only to get the best from their staff, but as studies are proving, to ensure staff retention.
But WHY we hear you ask?
We checked the facts through the excellent source available from Work Safe and have the rundown for YOUR workstation:
This should be directed by the range of people using it, their task load, performance needs, and type of equipment utilised.
Huge on the grand scale of workstations is adjust-ability! Often, workstations are shared about by colleagues who will need to quickly alter heights accommodating to different sizes and statures of people, but as offices and technology advance, they also need to accommodate the growing range of equipment used and tasks performed.
"The workstation should be easily adjustable and the adjustment mechanism should not create a risk from manual handling. Electric adjustment is the most appropriate." - Work Safe
Posture and movements associated with a workstation, influence the postures people take while working, and often increase the chance of developing kyphoisis (curved upper spine) as it creates lazy back muscles from hunching over a desk or phone.
Workstations shouldn't be an after thought when designing a new office space, meaning that the placement of your valuable people should be in their best position to enable them to work effectively (ideally close to natural light!), perform their tasks, and use their equipment in comfort without causing pain or strain.
You'll be pleased to know, that with all the options we have available and advances in technology, we can cater to any office space or layout, design aspects, specific colour combination, computer requirement and budget.
If you're still on the fence about making small or large changes in your office, then consider the stats taken from below to hammer the message about safe workplaces home:
26,429 claims were places with Work Safe last year
62% of Work Cover claims are due to preventable sprains and strains
Almost 50% of the above claims, were reported to target the back
$4.8 billion in healthcare is spent each year on back related injuries
25% of sufferers in the 18-55 age gap took off an average of 10 days to recover
17,000 - 18,000 Victorians have been injured through sprain, strain or injury in the past five years
If you already have ergonomically designed workstations in your office fit out - WELL DONE for taking the health of your employees seriously!
If not, it's never too late to start. If your office furniture needs to become more ergonomically friendly to reduce the risk of injuries and respite, give our capable team at Balance Interiors a call on (03) 9761 4555 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to have an obligation free chat about your situation.
We listen, so we can provide the right workstations, office chairs, and accessories in order for your team to ooze wellness, productivity, and reward you with their longevity.
Wishes in wellness,
The Balance Team