The Bottom Line: Adjustable Office Workstations: How to Maximize the Investment
Posted on July 12, 2022 | in Ergonomics
Providing adjustable office workstations to improve employee well-being and performance shouldn’t end there. For just a few dollars more, organizations can maximize its investment by offering one key element. Certified ergonomist Blake McGowan explains in this month’s broadcast.
References: Robertson MM, Huang YH, Lee J. (2017). Improvements in musculoskeletal health and computing behaviors: Effects of a macroergonomics office workplace and training intervention. Appl Ergon. 2017 Jul;62:182-196.
Hi, my name is Blake McGowan, and I’m a certified professional ergonomist with Humantech (now VelocityEHS Ergonomics). Many organizations are investing in new adjustable workstations and flexible workplaces in order to improve employee well-being as well as optimize performance.
And what we mean by adjustable workstations, we mean workstations that have height-adjustable surfaces, monitor arms, as well as adjustable chairs. And when we talk about flexible workplaces, we mean that people can work anywhere within the office. On average, organizations are investing roughly $2,500 per employee on these new workplaces.
So, how do we maximize and maintain the value of that investment? Well, in 2017, Michelle Robertson and her colleagues from the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety conducted a study to understand the impact of new workstations as well as office ergonomic training on employee well-being and business performance. They conducted a longitudinal study of a large group of office employees and did a follow-up review six months later. They assigned each employee to one of three groups.
The first group was a traditional workplace or a cubicle and did not receive any new workstation improvements. The second group received new adjustable workstations as well as a flexible workplace. And the third group received the adjustable workstations, a flexible workplace, as well as office ergonomics training.
So, what did she find? Well, there are two critical findings. The first one is that the two groups that received the new adjustable workstations as well as the flexible workplace had better employee wellbeing as well as business performance. Those benefits included improved comfort, improved performance, and improved satisfaction. The second and probably most important finding is that the group that also received office ergonomics training maximized their employee well-being and performance benefits.
So, what does this mean? What’s the bottom line? The bottom line is that training your employees on office ergonomics, in addition to providing new workstations and a flexible workplace, maximizes and maintains employee well-being and business performance.
So, for more information on Humantech (now VelocityEHS Ergonomics)and the Bottom-Line series, please feel free to visit our website at Humantech (now ehs.com). Thanks, and have a great day.