Workstation set-up and ergonomic assessments are provided around Perth by our experienced Ergonomists and Occupational Therapists.
We also provide onsite ergonomics and manual handling training workshops, including safe lifting techniques, for both Perth based and regional sites around WA.
Workstation set-up is one source of hazard that is often identified during an office or workplace risk assessment.
There are many different factors in offices that can cause injury to staff. The importance of workstation set-up and job design, including the use of stand-up desks, cannot be underestimated when planning for the wellbeing of office based staff. Sprain and strain injuries remain the highest cause of Workers Compensation claims.
Office workstation set up
The core components looked at with workstation ergonomics, both group and individual assessments, include a desk, a chair and the equipment used to perform office tasks. Other furniture may include reception desks, paper storage, collation benches and workbenches next to office equipment such as photocopiers, faxes and printers. Light quality must also be considered.
In the design of office workstations flexibility and adjustability are the key design issues. Individuals can then control how their workstation is set up and organised to meet the changing demands and variety of tasks they perform. Our ergonomist or OT will discuss this with you during your individual workstation assessment.
The design of a workstation should be directed by the range of people who may use it, the tasks they perform and the type of equipment to be accommodated.
Some things you will be asked to consider during an ergonomic assessment include:
- joints should be in relaxed and comfortable positions. This makes the work of muscles, ligaments and tendons around joints more efficient. Where extreme positions must be used, they should be held for as little time as possible and not repeated often;
- the work should be kept as close as possible to the body to minimise the stress on the body when reaching to perform a task;
- commonly accessed items should be stored between hip and shoulder height where possible to avoid bending over and reaching up;
- repetitive tasks such as using a keyboard and mouse should be performed for short periods. They are best interspersed with other tasks requiring different postures and movements, e.g. collecting work at the printer, reviewing, photocopying and distributing documents;
- static or fixed postures should only be held for short periods of time and interspersed with different tasks;
- job design should provide the opportunity for people to sit, stand or walk a short distance as a normal part of their duties;
- exertion from the use of excessive force should be avoided; and
- exertion of force should be done in an upright posture, without twisting the spine and preferably using both hands equally.
As well as a workstation ergonomics assessment, is important to include task variety in the design of an employees work. This is best done by mixing intensive keyboard use and other computer use with a variety of other work. It is important that the different tasks involve a change in posture and muscles used to perform the work.
As the working day progresses it becomes more important to provide work with different mental demands, changes in posture and more frequent work breaks.
Find out more about what you learn in a Workstation ergonomic assessment with one of our Ergonomists or Occupational Therapists.
We can also run manual handling training, safe lifting seminars and practical group workshops tailored to your workplace functions.