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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.

3 Tips to Keep Your Team Healthy While Working The Night Shift

3 Tips to Keep Your Team Healthy While Working The Night Shift

attractive nurse in uniform sitting at table and looking at laptop during night shift

When the sun goes down, certain operations still require staffing. Night workers take on the graveyard shift while the rest of the world sleeps.

While this schedule provides special benefits to some people, the night shift can put stress on both physical and mental health. Whether you’re an employee, office administrator, or business owner you want to help keep your crew healthy, so that the work gets done and you feel good about the way you run the company.

Ergonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.

Working throughout the night can throw the body out of whack without proper care. Keep reading to learn 3 tips on how to work the night shift and stay healthy.

1. Schedule light-dark exposure.

Your body naturally feels more tired at night. The darkness triggers a release of melatonin in the brain that makes you feel drowsy.

This both increases the workers’ risk for injury on the job and puts a strain on the body as it struggles to stay awake. Over time, this strain can lead to health problems, like heart disease and cancer.

Research on shift workers reveals that scheduling light-dark exposure can help. Exposing people who work the night shift to bright lights, while suggesting that they seek darkness for a number of hours following their shift, can help reset their circadian rhythm.

By altering the body’s internal time clock with scheduled light-dark exposure, you increase their alertness while helping the body to function normally without additional strain. One complication to this is that they may need to continue this scheduling even on their days off for the benefit.

2. Make sure you and your crew are well fed.

Working on the night shift changes your nutritional needs. Normally, you would sleep through the night and not eat.

But, staying productive and alert requires fuel. Researchers found that snacking while working provides the most alertness to shift workers. Not eating deprives you of energy. Eating a full meal turns on our parasympathetic nervous system, the responsible party for resting and digesting.

Providing snacks to your workers may seem costly, but, not when you compare it to the cost of workers comp from an avoidable on the job injury.

It may also help your workers find a make a journey home. Night work research suggests that night shift workers are a greater risk for getting into a car accident on their way home compared to their daytime counterparts.

They are an essential part of your business. So, keep them safe with a snack.

3. Every workplace should offer a wellness program.

Offer your nighttime crew a wellness package. The cost to do so may increase productivity and profits by keeping your workers showing up healthy and alert to work.

As part of the wellness program, make the workspace ergonomic! This means performing an ergonomics evaluation to properly assess what needs to be done. Consider contacting an ergonomics company for an assessment.

Additionally, a good wellness program might include a gym membership. This keeps workers active and strong while boosting their overall energy levels.

A good wellness program may also offer mental health counseling. The night shift can take a toll on mood, and this may greatly benefit your team.

In conclusion, keep your night team healthy at work.

Keeping the night shift healthy improves productivity and keeps morale high. Go the extra mile for the health and safety of the people who work for you through the night.

As always, the best way to ensure your workplace is healthy and injury free is to contact 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 Get in More Steps When Working a Desk Job

How to Get in More Steps When Working a Desk Job

National health guidelines recommend we walk up to 10,000 steps per day. Yet, most of us are averaging less than half of this targeted amount. For those of us who sit down to work at our jobs, this can be even more difficult.

Ergonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.

When you factor in additional sitting from your commute and decompressing after staring at a screen all day, increasing your daily step count can easily fall by the wayside. Fortunately, there are ways to improve this.

Keep reading to learn what our ergonomics experts suggest about how to stay healthy at work and increase your daily step count when working a desk job.

Small adjustments at work make a big impact in the long run.

You may be surprised to realize you don’t have to make drastic changes at work to increase your daily step count. Many of the simple tasks you perform each day can be modified to include more steps. It’s easier than you think!

Choose a parking spot further away than normal. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Find a bathroom a little further away if available. 

Your body and mind are accustomed to these routines and it won’t cause interference with job responsibilities.

Sitting at your desk job for extended periods of time can have long-term impacts to your spine and posture. Set an alarm or download a reminder app to remind yourself to stand up and walk at least once an hour. Take advantage of convenient excuses to slip away for a moment such as by responding to a colleague in person instead of through email.

Make the most of every break.

Depending on your desk job’s hours most companies grant between 30 minutes to an hour for lunch. Many also allow at least two 15-minute breaks throughout an eight-hour workday. While you use part of this to energize your body with food or coffee it’s also an opportune time to fit in more steps.

This could be as simple as walking short laps in the workplace or bringing a change of workout clothes for a jog. Many employees with desk jobs find working out in the middle of the day has enormous benefits for concentration and focus.

Increasing steps outside of work.

The daily routine from working up to eight hours can instill positive consistency. Use this to your advantage by keeping the momentum going with activities that can increase your daily step count either before or after work. It’s very obtainable to tally the approximate 2,000 average steps in a mile with downtime.

Whether you’re an early riser or night owl, connecting exercise to your work schedule has a great upside for your health. This could be a morning jog with your dog before sunrise or going to the gym on your way home from work.

In conclusion, stay proactive about your health in the workplace.

Naturally increasing your step count while balancing a desk job is a positive step towards a healthy life. Interested in similar articles about improving your lifestyle habits at work? Visit 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

3 Free Apps that Serve as a Break Reminder at Work

3 Free Apps that Serve as a Break Reminder at Work

San Diego Ergonomics Consultants Present: 3 Free Apps that Serve as a Break Reminder at Work
Ergonomics Consultants | Solutions Northwest Inc.

Sitting all day at the office desk can take a toll on your body, which is why it is very important to take breaks at work. In fact, work breaks boosts productivity in the office or any workplace.

While this sounds like a simple task, how do you remember to take your work break when you are mentally deep in a project? This is where an app can be helpful.

Here are three apps that will help you be more productive and mentally sharp by giving you regular work break reminders:

1. Stretchly 

This app will change how you use your office computer. You can schedule both micro-breaks and longer breaks. 

Install this app on your computer, and a small window will pop up when you have a break approaching. Then another window will pop up when it is time to take a work break. If you must, you can skip your break, and it will remind you of the next one. 

Micro-breaks are every ten minutes for twenty seconds. The longer break option is every 30 minutes for five minutes. If these default times don’t work for you, then you can customize the lengths. 

2. Eye Care 20 20 20

This is a mobile app that is meant to give your eyes a break from staring into screens all day. About 80% of Americans use their digital devices for more than two hours a day. This results in about a third of American workers experiencing at least one of the symptoms of digital eye strain

This app helps you use a time-tested technique for giving your eyes a break. Every twenty minutes, you should look at something twenty feet away for twenty seconds.

This is a simple functioning app that reminds you to look up and away every twenty minutes. The customization of the functions focuses more on when you want your notifications, such as only during work hours. 

Couple this app with an office ergonomics gadget, such as computer glasses. Read more about computer glasses on our ergonomics blog.

3. Unhook 

The other apps on this list give you a notification and suggest that you take a break, but that isn’t useful if you ignore the suggestion. If you fall into this type of user, then you need Unhook. 

This app forces you to take a work break. During setup, you give yourself a daily time limit for different types of screen usage. Then when you hit that time, you must walk to earn more usage time. For every 100 steps you take, you earn ten minutes of usage time. 

If you really need to override the app, you can. There is the option of turning Unhook off and continuing your free usage. Be sparing with this as it defeats the purpose of having the app. 

In conclusion, prioritize your work breaks.

It can be tempting to skip your office work breaks when you have a lot of work to get done. However, this will ultimately hurt you. With regular breaks, you give your brain and body time to recharge and refocus, while boosting your work productivity.

Give yourself a break reminder with these useful apps. That way, you can focus on work and not on the clock. 

Taking regular work breaks isn’t the only thing you can do to be more productive at work; check out our extensive ergonomics blog for more ergonomics consultant tips that will keep your office running efficiently and safely. For more guidance on all work related health and safety issues, visit SolutionsNW.com or Contact Us for ergonomics guidance. Subscribe to our ergonomics blog for more ergonomics tips from Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics consultants located in Washington State: Seattle, WA, Tacoma, WA, Olympia, WA, Vancouver, WA, Kent, WA Renton, WA, Oregon State: Beaverton, OR, Portland, OR, Salem, OR, Southern California: San Diego, California, Carlsbad, CA, La Jolla, CA, Irvine, CA, Costa Mesa, CA, and Newport Beach, CA.

5 Reasons to Install a Gym at Your Office

5 Reasons to Install a Gym at Your Office

5 Reasons to Install a Gym at Your Office

“Milken Institute estimates direct healthcare costs of $480.7 billion due to obesity in 2016, along with $1.24 trillion in lost productivity.” – Milken Institute

Ergonomics Consultants | Solutions Northwest Inc.

Working out is often considered tiresome and time-consuming. But research has shown that physical exercise reduces stress, boosts morale, increases work productivity, and has many health benefits.

Thinking of a way to break the monotony at your workplace? Consider installing a work gym for your office workers. Not only will the work gym save you money in the long run, but it will also create an informal space where your employees can relate.

The process of installing a gym at your workplace can be an undertaking, so here are five solid reasons why installing a gym at your office is a great idea.

1. Improve efficiency at the workplace.

Having a gym at the office will improve your efficiency and that of your workers. This is because studies have found that people who work out have better cognitive functions than those who don’t.

Working out at the workplace also boosts your morale and motivates you to work even better. Installing a work gym may also lead to better health, which reduces the amount of employee sick days and certain preventable office injuries.

2. Save money in the long run.

Setting up a gym at your force is cheaper than having to pay monthly subscriptions to a local gym. The cost of having to pay regular medical bills will also reduce as you and your employees will get healthier.

Studies have shown that even a thirty-minute work-out every day can reduce the risk of developing serious health issues such as diabetes. Having a gym at your office will also reduce the amount of money and time you spend on driving to the gym.

3. Exercise reduces stress and monotony at the workplace. 

Installing a work gym improves the work environment. This is facilitated by a better interpersonal relationship created among the employees as they work out. Physical exercise is a great stress reliever and studies have shown that it reduces the level of cortisol produced by the body.

Physical exercise also breaks the monotony of the workplace. The rationale is that employees work out their bodies and produce endorphins which help their minds relax. This makes them more focused at their tasks.

4. Provide employees with convenience.

Installing a gym at your office allows you to work out whenever you want in whatever way you choose. This is very convenient, and it can fit into your busy schedule due to the accessibility of the gym.

Having a gym at the office also makes it easy for workers who spend long hours at the office to get a chance to work out.

5. Special perks attract and retain staff.

Installing a work gym will attract new staff and encourage the existing members to stay at the company. By creating a gym at the company, workers will feel more valued because they will interpret that the company values their health.

The gym will also act as an informal environment where the employees can interact. This will lead to the formation of stronger interpersonal relationships between the employees of the company and the management. Hence, making it easy for the company to keep its valuable employees.

In conclusion.

Employees are the most valuable resource of any company and installing a work gym is a great investment in promoting the workers’ welfare.

The need for installing a gym at the office has increased in recent years. This is due to the high number of people suffering from various lifestyle diseases that could have been prevented with proper exercise.

For more guidance on all work related health and safety issues, visit SolutionsNW.com or Contact Us for ergonomics guidance. 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.

Break Time: 5 Reasons Work Breaks Boost Productivity

Break Time: 5 Reasons Work Breaks Boost Productivity

Ergonomics Consultants | Solutions Northwest Inc.

We like to think that productivity means giving a task or project your 100% attention and working until it’s complete. But research now shows that taking breaks at work actually makes employees more productive. 

Wondering how taking breaks could possibly boost productivity? Here are some reasons why it really works.

1. Get back to work refreshed after a break.

If you don’t take lunch or coffee breaks by mid-afternoon you’re exhausted, you can barely think, and you spend more time trying to figure out what you’re doing than actually doing. Many of us push through and just keep working.

Working through your workday is ultimately less productive than taking breaks. 90% of participants in a recent study said that taking a full lunch break allows them to come back to work feeling refreshed and ready to go. While the lunch break may feel like wasted time, it actually prevents lost time by increasing focus.

2. Use your breaks to get inspired.

When it feels like you’re never going to find a solution to the work problem of the day, it’s time to take a break. Not taking breaks actually impedes our ability to think of creative, new solutions. 

Taking a quick walk, grabbing a coffee, or even sitting quietly, or staring out the window, gives our brains the break it needs to come up with new solutions. So, instead of banging your head against the wall, get away from your desk! But be sure to take your phone so you can take notes when inspiration hits.

3. Stress relief is necessary.

Stress is a part of any job. If we can manage work-related stress in healthy ways, then we can thrive. An inability to manage work-related stress leads to burnout, which is a productivity killer. 

One of the best ways to manage work-related stress just happens to be taking breaks during the day. Creating a habit of taking breaks when work-related stress is high creates a sustainable work style that makes employees more productive and happier.

4. Taking breaks allows for better work relationships.

When everyone in the office is glued to their computer screen, working constantly, there aren’t a lot of opportunities to build strong working relationships. Taking breaks with a coworker allows you to get to know them better, which makes it easier to work with them in the office. So, grab someone else when you’re headed to get a coffee and take some time to chat!

5. Take a break for your health.

When employees are encouraged to take regular breaks during the workday, they stay healthier than when they work through break times. There are multiple reasons for this. Taking an actual lunch break can lead to healthier food choices because employees have the time to seek out healthier options. Walking during breaks provides physical activity that office employees desperately need. Breaks to gather thoughts or meditate lead to decreased stress levels.

Healthier employees take less sick days, get more done during the day, and stick with their job longer because they don’t feel their job is negatively impacting their health. 

In conclusion.

Often employees aren’t taking breaks at work because they feel like they’ll be judged by their boss or coworkers. So, it’s essential to create a workplace culture that encourages taking breaks. While management may be resistant to creating this culture, the research is all there to prove that taking breaks is the key to happier, healthier, more productive employees.

To learn more about creating a healthy company culture and safer workplace, check out our website at SolutionsNW.com or Contact Us for ergonomics guidance. Solutions Northwest provides office ergonomics assessments if you believe your office needs one, Contact Us.

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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