Businesses that require their employees to work in standard office settings need to ensure that the workplace is safe and comfortable. Modern office spaces that are brightly lit and have the latest décor may not seem illness-inducing. However, at a Physical Therapy Institute in Las Vegas, we treat many clients suffering from chronic lower back pain and other related maladies. Many of these conditions are caused by incorrect posture and repetitive movements while working.
Outfitting your office with furniture that isn’t ergonomically designed can cause injuries to your employees. This is why it is important to ensure that you opt for ergonomic desks, chairs, keyboards etc.
Ergonomics – What Exactly Is It?
Ergonomics is the science that studies how efficient individuals are in their workplace. It also involves detailing steps you can take to ensure they maintain their productivity levels throughout the day. In very simple terms, understanding ergonomics can help you determine whether your employees are functioning at optimum efficiency levels in the office space they are currently working in.
If you find that many of your employees are low on productivity, you may want to look at the furniture in your office. You can consult with an office designer who has a good understanding of ergonomics. They are able to provide insights and guidance on what changes you can make to ensure your employees are working at full productivity levels.
In a large majority of offices, ergonomics isn’t given much consideration. As a result, employees develop persistent and sometimes chronic problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome, back pain, vision problems, neck pain and more. This means they end up visiting a physical therapist very often. Investing in good quality ergonomically-designed office furniture for your office space can help reduce the incidence of these injuries in your staff.
People that have sedentary jobs and sit hunched over their desks for long periods of time, tend to develop conditions such as trigger finger, tendonitis and more. Over time, these problems worsen and it isn’t uncommon for employees to report in sick regularly. Many may also need frequent treatment by a physical therapist in Las Vegas. Not only does this impact their health, but also your business’ profitability.
How To Avoid Ergonomic Hazards In An Office Space
Office ergonomic hazards are ones that affect your employees’ musculoskeletal systems. These can include the maladies we just mentioned, as well as lower-back strains, rotator cuff injuries, tennis elbow, and more. Repetitive motions cause these symptoms. Business owners suffer millions of dollars’ worth of losses annually in lost-time incidents. Choosing the right type of office furniture goes a long way toward reducing the chances of these injuries occurring.
Signs Of Impending Ergonomic Injuries
Like many other things, when it comes to ergonomic injuries, prevention is better than cure. Some common signs to look out for include:
- Complaints of pain or excessive fatigue.
- Employees that take frequent breaks to massage or rest their limbs, joints or muscles.
- Staff members trying to switch their work area in order to make it more comfortable.
- Employees wearing splints, neck braces etc.
All of these could be signs of impending injuries. Avoid these risk factors by providing your staff with good quality, ergonomic equipment, and furniture. At first glance, these items appear to be pricier in comparison to the furniture you’d purchase from big box office supply stores. However, the injuries they help prevent makes the investment worth every penny.
Choose The Right Ergonomic Office Furniture
Today, you will find ergonomic furniture from various brands. It’s a good idea to conduct some research to understand which company provides good quality furniture such as:
- Desks that convert into standing versions
- Office chairs that eliminate the pressure on the lower extremities.
- Sculpted keyboards that help wrists and hands to remain in relaxed positions.
Your knowledge will benefit both your employees and the future of your company.
Office Ergonomics – The Benefits
Focusing on office ergonomics offers a number of benefits such as:
- Cost Reduction – By investing in ergonomically sound furniture and strategies, you can significantly mitigate ergonomic risk factors such as musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) that typically occur due to poor posture or repetitive movements. Approximately one-third of workers compensations are paid to employees affected by workplace-related MSDs, who have to regularly consult a Physical Therapist in Las Vegas. Investing in ergonomic office furniture can help reduce these costs.
- Improved Quality of Work – Poor office ergonomics can result in tiredness. Easily irritated workers are unable to do their best work. The tedium may cause them to become lax in their work. It may also cause them to forget to make important calls to clients or miss critical project instructions. The best way to keep your staff in great form is to invest in ergonomic office design.
- Boosts Productivity Levels – Office ergonomics significantly boosts the productivity levels of your employees. Design workspaces that promote easier heights and reaches. Less repetitive motions, less exertion, and good posture nurture more efficient work processes. This results in higher productivity.
- Improves Employee Engagement – When you invest in office ergonomics, it helps boost morale, lessens absenteeism, reduces turnover and increases employee involvement. In addition, your employees will appreciate that the organization they work for is mindful of their well-being. This encourages them to work better and they are more inclined to put in their best at work. In turn, this increases your bottom line.
- The Safety Aspect – Investing in ergonomics shows that your company focuses on creating a strong workplace safety culture. Your employees are your most valuable asset. Taking steps to ensure they have a comfortable, safe and healthy space to work in is the right thing to do and it makes business sense too.
Regardless of which way you look at it, there are a significant number of benefits to incorporating office ergonomics in your workplace. We at the Physical Therapy Institute have seen that people who work in ergonomically sound offices are less prone to musculoskeletal injuries and persistent and chronic aches and pains.
If you aren’t too sure of how to get started on office ergonomics, contact a professional office designer with some experience in the space.