The Bottom Line: Job Rotation Increases Overall Musculoskeletal Disorder Risk

Blake McGowan, Director of Research

Many organizations use job rotation as a method to reduce the risk of injuries. But, mounting evidence shows the opposite. Recently, Sean Gallagher and colleagues from Auburn University evaluated its effectiveness to reduce MSD risk based on the Fatigue Failure Model. Director of Ergonomics Research Blake McGowan explains.

Job Rotation Results on Reducing MSD Risk

Any rotation with a high risk job task increased the overall risk of injury for the pooled workers. Any rotation between low risk jobs, moderate risk jobs, and high risk jobs result in:

  • low risk jobs become high risk
  • moderate jobs become high risk
  • high risk jobs remain high risk

References: Amir Mehdizadeh, Alexander Vinel, Qiong Hu, Mark C Schall Jr, Sean Gallagher, and Richard F Sesek. (2020). Job Rotation and Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorders: A Fatigue-Failure Perspective. Ergonomics. 2020 Apr;63(4):461-476.

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