The Importance of Having the Right Ergonomics Program at Workplace
Employers worldwide are realising the importance of having ergonomics safety built-in as part of their occupational safety and health strategy. According to reports on occupational safety and health issues, ergonomics has been found to be the most common form of injury to workers across the globe. Lower back stress, neck pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis and tennis elbow have been found to be the topmost reasons for employees’ absence from work. Therefore, an organisation risks losing a lot of revenue due to productivity losses, in case it does not invest sufficiently in a well-defined ergonomics strategy.
While there are different programs and activities that can be employed to keep employees’ health under check, the task is best done by ergonomic specialists. An organisation should create an ergonomics department, conduct employee assessments and trainings, hire experts and provide the right equipment to employees. It is a good practice to take regular breaks from using computers and machinery, to maintain a good posture during work and engage in distressing activities such as indoor sports or cultural programs.
During the initial setting up of an ergonomics program within an organisation there could be teething troubles. For instance, the method of making employee assessments could be inefficient. This is specially the case, when a single ergonomics experts needs to travel to several locations to conduct such programs in person. Also, there could be a lack of training and online resources to help employees view their personal information. The ergonomics staff needs to reach out to each and every employee, especially the ones that are not forthcoming in sharing their personal ergonomic problems. There could also be a challenge in finding out the right set of technology tools to help analyse data that is available and take proactive action based on it. This shall also hamper the efforts of the staff to design the right ergonomics for the organisation.
Advancements in technology and the use of latest software can help avoid common pitfalls. An HSEQ software platform that is built around an ergonomics solution can help manage corporate programs to reduce injuries, reduce productivity costs and proactive advise on the future course of action. You can use software to track your ergonomics policies and procedures, collect information on employees, and justify costs to the management by showing quantifiable return on investment. The use of technology also enables employees to assess their workplace for risk, generate risk scores and recommendations for protection against injuries, report on occupational hazards, and proactively find new ways to reduce risk at workplace.