When investing into the workplace it’s important to make sure that your employees are comfortable as well as content. One way to ensure your employees’ comfort is through ergonomics.
Ergonomics is the science of designing the workplace while having your employees’ best interest at heart. If your employees are not working under optimum conditions there is a higher chance of them becoming fatigued, frustrated and therefore incapable of performing to their best capabilities.
In today’s society we are increasingly aware of employee well-being because, after all, a happy worker is a productive worker!
This being said, there is an ever-growing market for ergonomic products for the workplace. Businesses all over the world are investing into ergonomic products to increase overall productivity as well as protect the long-term health of their staff. In this blog we look at what we believe to be are five ergonomic products that your office needs.
1. The office chair
For those who work in an office, the majority of the working day is spent sat in an office chair. Recent studies have shown that sitting for 8 hours a day is the health equivalent of smoking an entire pack of cigarettes believe it or not!
When sat down a considerable amount of pressure is compressed to the spine which could lead to long-term back problems should the wrong chair be used.
In an age where health and safety procedures are stamped firmly in place and we are increasingly conscious of our well-being it is of no doubt that there are many types of ergonomic chairs available on the market. So where would one begin? We are all different so one chair may not specifically be the best, but it is important to check for the following features:
• An adjustable seat: This will help you maintain the correct posture in order to sit up straight to type and write. Those who sit up straight will be able to concentrate harder and as a result perform better. See our blog on how to sit correctly during the working day for more information.
• Lumbar support: Lower back support is extremely important. A chair that supports the lower back suitably will prevent the user from slouching which will cause discomfort and possible long-term strains.
• The back rest: This needs to be approximately 12-19 inches wide and adjustable to support the spine’s natural curve. A locking mechanism must be in place to prevent the user leaning back and losing support.
• The arm rest: The chair’s arm rests must also be adjustable so that the user can rest their arms comfortably and at the right height in order to type.
2. The Sit-Stand Desk
Organisations are increasingly investing in sit-stand desks for their employees. Although costly, the sit-stand desk has monumental long-term health benefits. As mentioned, the human body isn’t designed to be sat down for long periods of time and standing while working will help fight aches, injuries and improve cardiovascular activity around the body.
Posturite, a leading UK manufacturer in office ergonomic products, has designed an electric height adjustable sit-stand desk. At the push of a button you can adjust the height of your desk depending whether you want to sit or stand.
3. Ergonomic Mice
While we may take these for granted, improper use of mice and keyboards could have detrimental effects on your health.
Using the wrong mouse for example over a repeated period of time can cause a number of painful injuries. Carpal tunnel syndrome and repetitive strain injury are two examples.
There are a number of ergonomic mice available so before buying, at Workspace Design and Build we recommend that you give them a try. For example, a vertical mouse is the same as an ordinary mouse but turned sideways into a handshake position. This prevents your forearm twisting away from its natural position and relieves any wrist pain.
4. An ergonomic keyboard
Similar to a mouse, a keyboard is another crucial piece of office equipment that slips our mind. A good ergonomic keyboard will relieve your fingers and wrists of any discomfort from unnecessary stretching and can increase your overall efficiency.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome may also arise due to long-term use of standard keyboards.
Also available on the market are antimicrobial keyboards which can be machine washed. These are perfect for any working environment where germs, crumbs, etc. may linger.
5. Other accessories
Other pieces of equipment that you may want to purchase for your office include writing slopes and document holders.
Writing slopes are proven to assist in maintaining a proper posture for writing. These slopes can also help reduce strain on the neck and eyes. When choosing a writing slope ensure that it is adjustable so that the individual user can change the height to suit them accordingly.
Similar to writing slopes, document holders will allow your employees to read, write or type comfortably. These can help reduce the risk of long-term neck and spinal injury.
What do you think? Do you think that when configuring office design we should invest in ergonomic products for our employees? Although costly, it’s important that your employees feel as if they are being looked after and that their health and well-being is at heart. Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below or get in touch on Facebook or Twitter.