The importance of office furniture in terms of workplace posture and ergonomics is becoming more apparent than ever.
Your business or learning workspace should be conducive to those working there. If your employees or students aren’t getting the ergonomic office equipment they deserve, they can develop poor posture and be on their way toward repetitive use syndrome.
Bad sitting posture effects will haunt not just your workers, but your company or university too. At best you’ll have poor attendance; at worst you’ll face OSHA issues of noncompliance for safety.
That’s why doctors and scientists today recommend that desk workers change posture several times a day. To protect your office and those inside it, consider the benefits of ergonomic office furniture that allow adjustable posture:
The Real Cost of Poor Workplace Posture and Ergonomics
There have long been warnings about the dangers of sitting for long periods, yet many offices and universities haven’t adjusted how they situate their employees or students. To totally blame sitting is oversimplifying the problem.
The real issue is when workers who sit in front of a computer all day have no variation in the way they sit or stand. This setup is a welcome mat for posture issues and repetitive use syndrome.
Scientists link several health conditions to immobility at the office:
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Rotator cuff issues
- Other lower back pain
In a fast-paced environment, many people forget or don’t feel they have time to get up and move around. The right ergonomic office solutions can act as a reminder and an assistant. This is where you have the responsibility to encourage variety in workplace posture and ergonomics. If your workers lack an ergonomic desk setup, start there -- this way they don’t have to leave their desk if they don’t have time.
Protect Your Assets -- Recognize the Importance of Office Furniture
Users that are more healthy and productive keep your business successful. OSHA compliance keeps your business around.
Even if your industry doesn’t have specific guidelines, OSHA -- the Occupational Safety and Health Administration -- is watching. OSHA ergonomic standards are summed up in this paragraph straight from its website:
“OSHA will cite for ergonomic hazards under the General Duty Clause or issue ergonomic hazard alert letters, where appropriate, as part of its overall enforcement program. OSHA encourages employers to implement effective programs or other measures to reduce ergonomic hazards and associated MSDs (musculoskeletal disorders).”
Worksite International also points out that in many states, office ergonomics rules are extensive and beyond the scope of federal OSHA regulations.
For example, in California, workers can file for workers’ compensation to cover certain injuries. These injuries include any “... sustained by his/her employment arising out of and during employment.”
Have you or your HR team reviewed your state OSHA requirements for workplace ergonomics injuries? It‘s critical that you maintain an environment conducive to safety in the workplace, whether that is in the office, behind the wheel of a truck, or on the assembly line. In other words, cover your butt.
For all of your ergonomic needs, check out our free manager's equipment guide below:
Choose an Ergonomic Workstation Setup
To get started on a more ergonomic workstation setup, consider the possibilities and importance of modern office furniture. A sit-stand desk mechanism, for instance, allows employees to switch up their daily routine in a convenient and cost-effective manner.
An ergonomic monitor lift mechanism lets the user adjust a screen monitor with a simple motion. This reduces desk injuries while letting employees take control over their ergonomic safety.
When you put the power of accessibility into the hands of your employees, they will be far more likely to be cheerleaders for ergonomics in the workplace. Further empower them by showing them the best posture for sitting at a desk all day. Not everyone uses good sitting posture at work, so don’t assume they’ll use your new equipment correctly.
Improve Your ROI
Buy-in and education are half the battle. After all, if your workers aren’t bothering to use that new, powerful ergonomic workstation setup you bought, your company’s money is wasted.
(Editors Note: This blog was originally published in Sept 2019 and was updated in September 2021 to reflect new information and updates)