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Why Every Business Needs an Ergonomics Assessment

Why Every Business Needs an Ergonomics Assessment

Businesswoman Relax from work. At the office

No matter the size of your business, it’s essential to take the role of ergonomics very seriously. Whether you have five employees or fifty, it’s vital to take their long-term health very seriously. The health of your employees matters and is also important to your long-term financial success.

If you’re unsure of what the ergonomics standing of your business currently is, it can be worth looking into ergonomic assessments. Seeing where your workplace stands can ensure you implement needed changes. This will save you trouble and money down the line.

Want to learn more about the benefits of ergonomics assessments? Read on.

Ergonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.

Providing a safe and stable workplace for your employees is a must.

One of the main reasons ergonomic assessments are important is that they benefit your employees. Your employees deserve the right to a safe and comfortable working environment. Plenty of modern workplaces feature working conditions that actually pose a long-term risk to workers’ health.

No employee deserves that.

Looking out for your employees isn’t only the right thing to do, it can yield a lot of positive results for your company. It’s a competitive field out there, and you want to ensure you’re hiring the very best for your company or business.

The best way to make yourself attractive to potential hires is to demonstrate a level of genuine care for your employees. A safe and ergonomically focused workplace is becoming a must-have for many of the most qualified and skilled new workers in the country.

If you fall behind in ergonomics workplace standards, you could easily lose employees to other businesses that are willing to put their workers first. The costs of hiring and re-hiring employees alone can put you under a lot quicker than the cost of a simple ergonomic assessment, not to mention the costs of potential on-the-job injuries.

Workplace ergonomics evaluations save you money in the long run.

An ergonomics assessment can point out potential dangers in the way your workplace is currently set up. It can also provide solutions.

These ergonomics solutions can lower your cost of running a business. The cost of serious worker’s compensation claims and injury lawsuits is enough to bankrupt any serious-sized company, much less a small one. Not to mention, happier and safer workers are better workers.

If you want to reduce work injury claims and increase productivity in the workplace, implementing serious ergonomics innovations is one of the best ways to go about this. Even if you can reduce claims in your company by a small percentage, you can increase your profitability on a yearly basis by a large margin.

Yes, the more ergonomically friendly equipment might cost a little bit more upfront, but the investment is more than well worth its cost. 

In conclusion, ergonomics assessments are essential for every business.

If you’re a small business owner, it’s essential for the health of your employees and your company that you take the topic of ergonomics very seriously. Allowing ergonomics assessments of your workplace can highlight potential danger areas and provide solutions that can help you and your workers out in the long-run.

Ready to schedule an assessment today? Contact Solutions Northwest Inc. anytime to speak with one of our ergonomics experts. 

Be sure to stay current with the latest workplace safety news and subscribe to our ergonomics blog often for more tips and tricks for a more efficient workplace.

At SolutionsNW.com we value the importance of a positive workplace culture. Part of a positive workplace is a safe workplace, Contact Us to schedule an ergonomics consultation or ergonomics assessment for your office today.

Subscribe to our ergonomics blog for more ergonomics tips from Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics evaluations available in: Seattle, WA, Tacoma, WA, Olympia, WA, Vancouver, WA, Kent, WA Renton, WA, Beaverton, OR, Portland, OR, Salem, OR, San Diego, CA, Carlsbad, CA, La Jolla, CA, Irvine, CA, Costa Mesa, CA, Newport Beach, CA.

5 Ergonomic Risk Factors You Didn’t Know Your Job Had From an Ergonomics Perspective

5 Ergonomic Risk Factors You Didn’t Know Your Job Had From an Ergonomics Perspective

5 Risks You Didn't Know Your Job Had

“Adapting tasks, workstations, tools, and equipment to fit the worker can help reduce physical stress on a worker’s body and eliminate many potentially serious, disabling work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).” – OSHA

No matter where you work, your computer-centric job could pose serious risk factors from an ergonomics perspective.

Here are our top 5 risk factors you didn’t realize your job had.

Ergonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.

1. Insufficient work breaks.

Without sufficient breaks, your posture can take a hit and have immediate effects on your health. It’s easy to get lost in a task and find yourself slouching with sore shoulders hours later.

This is particularly true for those who complete work on computers. Classic desk jobs require hyper-focus on screens, which correlates with less movement throughout the day.

If you have a labor-focused job in comparison, you are more likely to have risks related to unsafe methods of labor vs. unsafe posture. Combat this by setting a timer to take a break every half hour, at least.

On your breaks, be sure to get out of your chair and take a quick walk. This can be as simple as walking to the water cooler or even to a coworker across the room. Any break like this can help reset your posture and refresh your mind as well.

2. Watch for the risk factors of your desk and workstation.

Posture-related risk factors are not the only risk of a desk job. While you can control your posture or train yourself not to slouch, sometimes your physical desk space is not equipped for ergonomic health.

One simple fix is learning how to properly set up your computer’s monitor. For details, read our blog on how to set up your computer monitor.

Properly setting up your workstation can be complicated, consider consulting an ergonomics consultant to have an evaluation and ergonomics assessment.

3. Protect your eyes from digital eye strain.

Prolonged vision issues can arise from constant computer and tablet use. The average American worker spends seven hours a day on a computer.

You may notice that working on a digital device close to bedtime can result in low quality of sleep as well.

You may be unable to cut down on the hours you spend on a digital device. However, you can minimize the risk for your eyes.

Take frequent breaks and consider the 20-20-20 rule. Take a 20-second break in which you look at a location 20 feet away every 20 minutes. This will help protect your eyes every day.

4. Unsafe lifting at work can lead to injury.

One obvious risk of a labor job is related to unsafe lifting. Lifting from your back, instead of your core and feet, can result in job-related injuries and long-term pain.

Be sure to follow any safety procedures and training your job provides. It’s important to ask for help and put your health first, as ignoring this can result in a shorter career as well.

5. Cramped workplace can cause work injury.

If your desk is cramped or placed in a corner, your body will be under strain. No matter how best you optimize your space, a lack of space or tools can result in poor health.

Do your best to arrange a home office space with enough room and install equipment with ergonomics in mind. If you work in an office, be sure to collectively push for enough room between your desks to work in and breathe.

If you’re unsure of how to arrange your workstation, contact an ergonomics company to evaluate your workstation and provide an ergonomics assessment.

In conclusion, stay proactive to combat workplace injury.

In 2013, the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) accounted for 1/3 of reported days-away-from-work. While stress and occasional discomfort are unavoidable, minimizing ergonomic risk factors is essential.

Don’t risk your health while you work. Take frequent breaks throughout your workday, set up your desk for success, and avoid cramped spaces to stay on track for health longevity.

In fact, consider contacting our ergonomics consultants at Solutions Northwest Inc. for an ergonomics assessment for your company.

Subscribe to our ergonomics blog to read more tips and tricks for keeping yourself healthy while you’re at work.

Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics consultants located in: Seattle, WA, Tacoma, WA, Olympia, WA, Vancouver, WA, Kent, WA Renton, WA, Beaverton, OR, Portland, OR, Salem, OR, San Diego, CA, Carlsbad, CA, La Jolla, CA, Irvine, CA, Costa Mesa, CA, Newport Beach, CA.

How to Relieve Eye Strain from Staring at Screens at Work

How to Relieve Eye Strain from Staring at Screens at Work

People who spend long hours staring at computer screens at work may experience some eye discomfort. Here's how to relieve eye strain while you're in the office.

Many office workers are aware of carpal tunnel syndrome, but what about computer vision syndrome (CVS)? Computer vision syndrome includes a variety of eye strain issues, such as dry eyes and tension headaches, that primarily affect office workers. According to WebMD, “50% to 90% of people who work on computers exhibit symptoms of CVS.”

Ergonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.

While these statistics sound scary, there are things you can do to help your eyes during the day. Let’s explore how to relieve eye strain during the work week so you can keep your body in tip-top shape.

How to relieve eye strain.

Are you ready to relieve your eyes? The ergonomics experts at Solutions Northwest Inc., have put together these tips to help you keep your vision healthy by reducing heavy strain on your eyes.

1. Adjust your screen at work.

The closer your eyes are to your screen, the harder they work. Give your eyes a much-needed break by keeping your screen at a safe distance.

A good rule of thumb is to keep your monitor 25 inches away from your face. If you don’t have any measuring tape, just use the length of your arm. If you have trouble seeing, adjust your computer settings to enlarge the text.

Poor posture also contributes to vision problems. The top of your screen should be at eye level. By keeping your computer at this level, you should experience less back and neck tension.

Check out our guide on setting up your work desk for proper ergonomics here.

2. Give yourself a break from work.

Not only is it crucial for your mental health to take breaks from your work throughout the day, but it’s essential for your physical well-being, too. You can reduce eye strain by taking one 10-minute break every hour. 

While you’re on your break, don’t switch from staring at a computer screen to looking at your phone screen. That won’t relieve your eyes at all.

Take active work breaks, go for a walk, stretch, and move around. Take a stroll around your office, or do simple office stretches at your desk. Once you return to work, you’ll notice your eyes feeling much more refreshed.

3. Brighter is not better.

Don’t turn your brightness all the way up on your computer screen. If your screen is much brighter than your surroundings, your eyes strain more to see. Adjust your brightness level to match your surrounding workstation.

To improve your brightness levels, minimize other bright lights in the office if possible.


4. Don’t forget to blink.

When you’re concentrating, you might forget to blink. According to AAO.org, people blink one-third as much as they normally do while staring at a screen.

Blinking is how our eyes naturally stay hydrated and refreshed. When you don’t blink, your eyes start to dry up as they become strained.

Making a habit to blink frequently while staring at a screen reduces tension. If your eyes feel dry, keep artificial tears at your desk. These lubricating eye drops can reduce irritation and help your eyes stay hydrated.

In conclusion, stay proactive while viewing a screen at work.

An office with ergonomics in mind is a happy office! Spread the word to your coworkers about how to take care of their eyes while spending most of the week on a computer. Through these simple techniques, you and your colleagues can reduce eye strain and feel healthier at the end of a long work week.

Now that you know how to relieve eye strain, explore other remedies for making life at the office healthier for your body. In fact, consider contacting our ergonomics consultants at Solutions Northwest Inc. for an ergonomics assessment for your company.

Subscribe to our ergonomics blog to read more tips and tricks for keeping yourself healthy while you’re at work.

Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics consultants located in: Seattle, WA, Tacoma, WA, Olympia, WA, Vancouver, WA, Kent, WA Renton, WA, Beaverton, OR, Portland, OR, Salem, OR, San Diego, CA, Carlsbad, CA, La Jolla, CA, Irvine, CA, Costa Mesa, CA, Newport Beach, CA.

The Ergonomic Way to Sit at Your Desk and View Your Monitor

The Ergonomic Way to Sit at Your Desk and View Your Monitor

Not having your work desk ergonomically adjusted can cause you injury in the long term.

In fact, one of the most important things you can do is have the correct sitting position at your desk.  Sitting correctly will help prevent headaches, neck pain, shoulder pain, backaches, and eye strain while working on a computer.

While every workplace should have an ergonomics assessment done by a professional ergonomics company, below are some quick tips to ensure you are sitting properly at your workstation.

Ergonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.

Start with the desk.

Before you can set up your monitor, you need to start with your desk. The height of the work desk should be half an inch below your sitting elbow height. 

Your height will play a significant role in the exact positioning of your desk and chair. 

If you desk is too low or too high, you may need a work around and an ergonomic consultant can help with this.

Learn the correct sitting posture for computer work.

When sitting at your computer desk, ergonomics consultants suggest that you relax your shoulders and keep your forearms parallel to the floor. Your wrist should only have minimal bend.

Your chair should have back support and armrests, as well as be height adjustable. Keep your thighs and feet parallel to the floor and use a footrest if necessary.

Remember to get up from your chair and move around every 25 minutes to give your body a break. Consider using an app to remind yourself to take your breaks, breaks can lead to more productivity in the workplace and keep you safe from injury.

The perfect ergonomic monitor height.

To start, make sure your monitor is centered directly in front of you. This way, you can sit in your chair and look straight forward. Otherwise, you will strain your neck and back as you twist to the right or left to look at the screen. 

The general rule is that your monitor should be 18-24 inches away from you. But you can also use your arm to measure this. 

Sit back in your chair and reach out towards your monitor. It should be about an arm length away.

Next, position the monitor so that the top of the screen is level with your eyes.

If you have your screen too low, you’ll tilt your head forward and strain your neck. Position the monitor too high, and you’ll find yourself tilting your head back. This can cause neck and shoulder pain. 

Lastly, ergonomics experts suggest it may be helpful to tilt the screen back so that the base is slightly closer than the top. This can make viewing the entire screen easier and help reduce glare or digital eye strain. Not all monitors have this capability.

In conclusion, know your office ergonomics basics.

A monitor which is not set up to the correct ergonomic height may not bother you at first. But over time, your muscles will strain, your body will ache, and you may develop a cumulative trauma injury. 

You can prevent all of this by making minor adjustments until you have your monitor in the ideal position. 

Visit SolutionsNW.com to learn more about the importance of workplace ergonomics or Contact Us to schedule an ergonomics consultation.

Subscribe to our ergonomics blog for more ergonomics tips from Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics consultants located in: Seattle, WA, Tacoma, WA, Olympia, WA, Vancouver, WA, Kent, WA Renton, WA, Beaverton, OR, Portland, OR, Salem, OR, San Diego, CA, Carlsbad, CA, La Jolla, CA, Irvine, CA, Costa Mesa, CA, Newport Beach, CA.

5 Signs Its Time for an Ergonomics Assessment

5 Signs Its Time for an Ergonomics Assessment

Do you want a productive team that’s healthy and happy? If so, find out if you need to invest in an ergonomics assessment here.

5 Signs Its Time for an Ergonomics Assessment
Ergonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.

In order to enjoy a more productive work environment, employees need to be physically comfortable and safe in the workplace.

Thoughtfully designing an employee’s workstation or purchasing ergonomic furniture and ergonomic devices at work can increase employee wellness. Additionally, an ergonomically sound workspace will help prevent things like back and neck pain or carpal tunnel syndrome for workers.

If your office admin or management is thinking of getting an ergonomics assessment at your place of business, read on for six signs it’s time to get one scheduled.

1. Employee injuries on the rise? It’s time for an ergonomics assessment.

If more employees are starting to complain about back or neck pain at work, it could be time for an ergonomics assessment. Health issues like carpal tunnel syndrome, a sore neck, or repetitive stress injuries among your employees are all serious red flags. If cost is an issue, be mindful that when employees feel uncomfortable or they’re in pain, it will reflect in their work, which makes this such an important issue for businesses of all kinds.

An ergonomics assessment will save a business money in the long run and protect the health of workers.

2. If your workplace has never heard of an ergonomics assessment, it probably needs one.

Maybe you’ve been using the same old furniture for years and never really thought there was a problem.

With a good review of your office and proper ergonomics procedures, you’ll begin to realize just how important this is to a productive, positive workplace.

4. You want to promote a healthy lifestyle at work.

Employers who care deeply about their employees want them to be happy and healthy. If you find yourself inspired by other companies who are promoting workplace wellness, consider an ergonomics assessment to help you get started.
 
You’ll be proud of the changes an ergonomics assessment can make in promoting health for everyone.

4. If nobody has ever done an ergonomics assessment before.

If nobody has ever performed a proper ergonomics assessment of your office or workspace, it’s very likely that employees are experiencing some discomfort at their workstations.

It is recommend that every office have the contact information of an ergonomics specialist or ergonomics consultant if they want to ensure a happy and healthy work environment.

5. When your work needs a productivity boost.

A combination of increased stress and workplace-related injuries, unhappy employees, and outdated furniture can lead to a slowdown in productivity at work.

Conversely, when management invests into ensuring that employees have a healthy, safe, and productive workplace, companies receive a spike in productivity and happiness. According to the University of Warwick, “happiness led to a 12% spike in productivity, while unhappy workers proved 10% less productive.”

In conclusion, make worker’s health a priority in your workplace.

Since you value the hard work your employees put in every single day, an ergonomics assessment or consultation can help improve the entire environment of your business.

If you are not an office administrator or manager, we suggest contacting your office’s human resource department to see about conducting an ergonomics assessment to determine how to best combat too much sitting in the workplace.

Visit SolutionsNW.com to learn more about the importance of workplace ergonomics or Contact Us to schedule an ergonomics consultation.

Subscribe to our ergonomics blog for more ergonomics tips from Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics consultants located in: Seattle, WA, Tacoma, WA, Olympia, WA, Vancouver, WA, Kent, WA Renton, WA, Beaverton, OR, Portland, OR, Salem, OR, San Diego, CA, Carlsbad, CA, La Jolla, CA, Irvine, CA, Costa Mesa, CA, Newport Beach, CA.

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