Office ergonomics has come a long way in the past decade; it now focuses on the workspace as a whole instead of just the office chair and workstation. Incredible strides have been made by manufactures who have embraced new innovations and materials for today’s workforce but many employers are still struggling to bring these concepts into a flexible office for mobile workforces.

Looking to make changes to your workplace? We can help. For a comprehensive ergonomic assessment talk to us on: (01) 6111 025 or (061) 303 666

Traditional ergonomics versus the new office ergonomics

Where the traditional ergonomics focused primarily on posture and position at a fixed, seated workstation, (e.g. correct office chair posture or the best office chair posture) we now know that changing position and relocating to different zones within a workplace brings countless benefits – especially in the flexible office.

Sedentary sitting (or indeed standing for too long) has been reported to cause similar health issues to smoking – namely heart problems and diabetes – as well as a host of back problems (one of the top reasons for employee absenteeism). It’s one of the reasons why demand for sit-stand desks have risen so sharply.

It’s not just the physical impact of environmental stressors in the workplace that must be considered with office ergonomics. The focus is now very much on the psychological wellbeing of workers too.

How to solve office ergonomics in a flexible work environment

One way to approach ergonomic interiors in the modern office is to refer to the wellness frame-works from leaders in the field, such as the guidelines offered by the WELL Building standard. This checklist borrows from that standard but also looks more deeply into furniture and fittings.

Secondly, it’s essential that the needs of the workforce and its diversity is assessed at an individual level too. What tasks are performed in the office and by whom? Young millennials? Older employees? Are people using large, fixed place computers or mobile tablets and laptops? Are people working individually or in groups? Is collaboration key in the office or do people require concentration? How do these people respond to environmental conditions and ambience?

Only by profiling how the space will be used and by whom will you be able to plan the space ergonomically to appeal to all. In the case of the open office or coworking space, variety is key.


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(061) 303 666