How Do Those Who Study Workplace Ergonomics Help Decrease Workplace Injury?


How Do Those Who Study Workplace Ergonomics Help Decrease Workplace Injury
3 Ways Ergonomics Can Help Reduce Workplace Injuries March 07, 2014 According to U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics, there were nearly 3 million workplace-related injuries and illnesses reported during the year 2012, resulting in an incidence rate of 3.4 cases per 100 equivalent full-time workers.

Remove barriers to work productivity: The first step in addressing ergonomic concerns in the workplace is to review tasks in an operation to see which may pose certain risks. Excessive repetition of movements can, for example, irritate tendons and increase pressure on the nerves while quick motions (i.e., bending and twisting) may increase the amount of force exerted on the body. Predicting what might go wrong and modifying the work environment accordingly can help to make everyday tasks safer for employees.

Design the job to fit the worker: Ergonomics involves designing a job to fit the worker, as opposed to the other way around. Rather than physically forcing an employee’s body to fit the tasks required for a particular job, adapting tasks, work stations, tools, and equipment to fit the worker can greatly reduce physical stress to the employee’s body as well as eliminate potentially serious workplace strains or injuries. LISTA seating, for instance, is designed to provide maximum comfort and support to technicians and other professionals who spend a significant portion of their time seated at workstations and workbenches.

Rearrange work station elements: After identifying the likely risk factors in an operation and considering an individual employee’s unique needs, the next step is to rearrange work station elements for maximum safety and productivity. Regardless of physical characteristics or the tasks performed, employees should be able to make adjustments to work surface height and chair seat height, or change the elevation of work shelves and work surfaces to increase worker comfort and productivity. Nonin Medical Inc. chose to install LISTA’s Arlink 8000 Modular Work Station System as part of its lean manufacturing implementation; the work stations provided greater flexibility to adapt to ergonomic challenges resulting from employees of different sizes operating at the same workbenches.

In recent years, workplace ergonomics has been getting a lot of attention nationwide in response to a sharp increase in the number of repetitive strain injuries resulting in musculoskeletal disorders, such as carpal tunnel syndrome. Learn more about LISTA ergonomic solutions or contact us for a quote!
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How ergonomics can help you to reduce the work accidents?

Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders in the Workplace – Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) affect the muscles, nerves, blood vessels, ligaments and tendons. Workers in many different industries and occupations can be exposed to risk factors at work, such as lifting heavy items, bending, reaching overhead, pushing and pulling heavy loads, working in awkward body postures and performing the same or similar tasks repetitively.
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What is the importance of ergonomics in the workplace study?

What are the advantages of ergonomics? Implementing ergonomic improvements can reduce the risk factors that lead to discomfort. Ergonomic improvements can reduce the primary risk factors for MSDs, so workers are more efficient, productive, and have greater job satisfaction.
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Can ergonomics prevent injury?

To prevent injuries, ergonomic risk factors must be identified. Ergonomic risk factors are workplace situations that cause wear and tear on the body and can cause injury. Once these have been identified, you can work on finding ways to eliminate them. Repetition Making the same motion over and over.
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How can ergonomics improve health and safety in the workplace?

Why is Ergonomics important? – In the workplace : According to Safe Work Australia, the total economic cost of work-related injuries and illnesses is estimated to be $60 billion dollars. Recent research has shown that lower back pain is the world’s most common work-related disability – affecting employees from offices, building sites and in the highest risk category, agriculture.

Ergonomics aims to create safe, comfortable and productive workspaces by bringing human abilities and limitations into the design of a workspace, including the individual’s body size, strength, skill, speed, sensory abilities (vision, hearing), and even attitudes. In the greater population : The number of people in Australia aged 75 and over is forecast to double over the next 50 years.

With this, equipment, services and systems will need to be designed to accommodate the increasing needs of the ageing population, applying to public transport, building facilities, and living spaces.
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Is ergonomic to reduce stress and eliminate injuries?

Ergonomics Ergonomics is the scientific study of people at work. The goal of ergonomics is to reduce stress and eliminate injuries and disorders associated with the overuse of muscles, bad posture, and repetitive tasks. This is accomplished by designing tasks, work spaces, controls, displays, tools, lighting, and equipment to fit the employee’s physical capabilities and limitations (NIOSH).
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How does ergonomics reduce errors and concerns in a work environment?

Boost Productivity – One of the greatest benefits of ergonomics in the workplace for business owners is its ability to boost productivity. Products designed with ergonomics in mind are built for the worker. An ergonomic workstation can make it easier for your employees to maintain proper posture.

At the same time, they’ll have to exert themselves less. Making fewer motions will allow them to work more efficiently. They won’t have to worry about heights and reaches, either, which can also boost their productivity. With ergonomics training, you can learn how to reduce the risk of musculoskeletal disorders in your workplace.

This can make it easier for employees to become more efficient and productive. They’ll experience greater job satisfaction, too!
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How does ergonomics affect the workplace?

Overview – Ergonomics is the science concerned with fitting the job or task to the physical and mental capabilities of the worker. Applying ergonomics principles to the workplace can reduce fatalities, injuries and health disorders, as well as improve productivity and quality of work. Poor ergonomics can lead to the following hazards:

musculoskeletal disorder visibility fall

Under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development inspectors check to see if these hazards in the workplace are addressed.
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Is ergonomics important for preventing common workplace?

Ergonomics is important for preventing common workplace injuries such as back injuries and repetitive-motion injuries. A larger sample size will give a more accurate estimate of the population mean. Price is the primary determining factor in choosing a vendor since most products and services are essentially the same.
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Why prevention is the key in ergonomic related injuries?

How Do Those Who Study Workplace Ergonomics Help Decrease Workplace Injury Digital Library > Operations and Technology > Safety “Preventing Ergonomic Problems” Good ergonomics makes for happier, healthier, more productive people and that translates into improved profits for your company. OVERVIEW Preventing work-related injuries makes good sense for any business. Ergonomics is defined here as the study of work activities that cause musculoskeletal disorders, which is the fastest-growing category of work-related illnesses. Currently, injuries in this category account for $15 to $20 billion of the workers’ compensation claims made each year. The problem is by no means limited to big companies. According to Charles Jeffress of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), fewer than 30% of small businesses — those with twenty or fewer employees — have addressed ergonomic issues in their companies. This is especially troubling in that Jeffress further reports that more than 325,000 musculoskeletal disorders occur in small firms each year (“Ergonomics Rule: OSHA’s Interference with State Workers Compensation.” U.S. Senate Hearing 106-529, April 27, 2000. Statement of Charles N. Jeffress, Assistant Secretary For Occupational Safety And Health, U.S. Department of Labor). Work-related injuries drain not only money but also morale and talent from your organization. By implementing some preventative measures, you’ll lose far less to workers’ compensation, medical costs and lost wage benefits. You’ll also find that such measures significantly increase employee satisfaction and productivity. In this Quick-Read you will find:

  • Basic facts about ergonomic problems in the workplace.
  • Examples of low-cost ergonomic preventive measures and solutions.
  • Sources for prevention program assistance.

SOLUTION Work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), such as back injuries and carpal tunnel syndrome, are the most prevalent, most expensive and most preventable medical problems in the country. Over 400,000 employees lost workdays in 2004 because of MSDs, and still more had their work activities restricted (” Lost Worktime Illnesses and Injuries,” U.S.

  • Bureau of Labor Statistics News Release, December 13, 2005).
  • Typically, MSDs are caused by force, repetition, backward postures, vibration and cold temperatures.
  • One of the most familiar causes of MSD is the use of a keyboard and mouse, an activity that can result in repetitive stress injuries to hands, arms, back and neck.

Fortunately, MSDs are often very easy to prevent. Remember, your objective is to eliminate a mismatch between the physical requirements of the job and the physical capacity of the worker. Here are some steps to begin addressing ergonomics in your workplace:

  • Examine injury and illness records to determine which jobs have a history of ergonomic problems.
  • Talk with workers to identify specific tasks that contribute to pain and lost workdays.
  • Use employee comments and recommendations to help formulate solutions to the ergonomic problems you discover.
  • Encourage workers to report MSD symptoms and establish a medical management system to detect problems early.
  • Establish policies encouraging use of equipment — not backs — for heavy or repetitive lifting.
  • Implement programs to educate employees and managers about ergonomic techniques designed to prevent and correct MSDs.
  • Develop an evaluation program to ensure that improvements are constantly made.

Simple solutions often work best. Changes to your workplace need not cost a fortune. Ergonomic interventions suggested by OSHA include:

  • Adjust the height of working surfaces to reduce long reaches and awkward postures.
  • Put work supplies and equipment within comfortable reach.
  • Provide the right tool handle for the worker.
  • Vary tasks for workers (e.g., employ job rotation).
  • Encourage short rest breaks.
  • Reduce the weight and size of items workers must lift.
  • Provide mechanical lifting equipment.
  • Replace telephone handsets with headsets anywhere they are used frequently.
  • Provide ergonomic chairs and stools.
  • Supply anti-fatigue floor mats.
  • Reduce or eliminate vibrations and sharp edges.

Get a free consultation from the experts OSHA provides free safety consultations. The service, described at, can help you identify potential hazards at your work site(s), improve occupational safety and health management systems, and even qualify for a one-year exemption from routine OSHA inspections.

  • Suggest general approaches or options for solving a safety or health problem.
  • Assist your company in developing or maintaining an effective safety and health program.
  • Provide you with a written report summarizing findings.
  • Provide free training and education.

The OSHA Web site ( offers many resources designed specifically for smaller employers, including free on-site consultation, interactive computer software, technical information and easy-to-follow guides for specific OSHA standards.

It also includes links to local OSHA offices and the Small Business Administration. Dates and locations for the small business forum meetings hosted by OSHA around the country are posted on the site as well. These outreach meetings are designed to inform the small business community about the type of assistance available.

REAL-LIFE EXAMPLE Arm them with knowledge Problem: Employees in many different offices experience pain from their daily tasks. Solution: You can easily address a number of general “ergonomic complaints” by making better use of the equipment you already have.

  • Show workers how to operate the adjustments already provided in their chairs, computer monitors and computer systems.
  • Changes in the placement of telephones, printers and in-boxes can lead to better working posture.
  • In addition, encouraging employees to take micro-breaks helps overused body parts rest and recuperate.

Cost: Variable, depending on availability of training and maintenance personnel. A novel solution Problem: A book warehouse sorter receives a bin of books on a gravity conveyor, carries it to the sorting station to scan each book’s bar code and then places the books in the correct order bin.

  • On completing the batch, the sorter slides the bins onto the evacuation conveyor.
  • Because each filled bin weighs between 30 and 50 pounds, the sorter complained of back pain and fatigue.
  • Solution: The company eliminated the need for lifting by connecting the three sections of the conveyor and installing manual stops between sections to avoid backup.

Cost: $80, including labor. Lowering the bar Problem: Laboratory workers hanging solution bags on a 75-inch rack experienced shoulder discomfort. To reach the rack and change the bags, some workers had to stand on their toes. Solution: Cutting 6 inches from the bottom and re-welding the rack.

  1. Take advantage of a free OSHA consultation. Lundberg and Tylczak, authors of Slash Your Workers’ Comp Costs, recommend first finding someone who has had such a consultation and discussing the results. Local OSHA offices vary in their aggressiveness, and there is risk of significant cost if a lot of changes must be made quickly. If you are uncomfortable turning to OSHA, consider hiring a specialist consultant to criticize ergonomic and safety features of your workflow design and procedures.
  2. Talk to your work team. You, your managers and your employees should work together to prevent ergonomic problems. Solicit feedback from staff to determine if there are any problems. Managers should make it clear that employee health and safety is a high priority.
  3. Act on your analysis data as well as the feedback that you receive from your OSHA consultation. Workstations might need to be rearranged, new equipment and furniture introduced, tasks redefined and work procedures adjusted. Remember: intervention does not always require new equipment. Often improvements can be made by simply rearranging existing furnishings and equipment to create a more ergonomically sound layout.
  4. Make a manager who cares responsible for establishing a process for reporting and dealing with ergonomic issues. Set up a system for proper diagnosis and treatment of ergonomic problems. Develop a proper procedure for returning the recovering employees to work.
  5. Give your staff ergonomic training. After all workstations have been evaluated and necessary changes implemented, instruct your employees on proper ergonomic practices. Make the training ongoing to encompass both workers who change responsibilities and employees who are new to your company.
  6. Measure and evaluate your office regularly. Actively listen to your employees when they express concerns about work-related discomfort, injury rate, productivity and quality. Evaluate your efforts and refine procedures as problems or developments occur.
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RESOURCES Books Fitting the Task to the Human: A Textbook of Occupational Ergonomics, fifth edition, by K.H.E. Kroemer and E. Grandjean (Taylor and Francis, 1997). This most-popular textbook provides more guidance for workplace designers than for executives.

Human Factors Design Handbook: Information and Guidelines for the Design of Systems, Facilities, Equipment, and Products for Human Use, second edition, by Wesley E. Woodson, Barry Tillman and Peggy Tillman. (McGraw-Hill, 1991). A standard reference source for equipment and workstation design. Slash Your Workers’ Comp Costs: How to Cut Premiums Up to 35% — And Maintain a Productive and Safe Workplace by Thomas Lundberg and Lynn Tylczak (AMACOM, 1997).

This book, emphasizing hazards more than ergonomic design, is more for the manager than the worker, and more for the plant than the office. Internet Sites Ergonomics, National Safety Council. Safety and Health Topics: Ergonomics.,U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
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What are four 4 benefits of ergonomics?

3. Improved Mental Clarity – Reducing physical discomfort and improving your posture can improve your mental clarity and allow you to do your work more successfully. Ergonomics can also help you reduce stress and improve your concentration. When you’re feeling comfortable, you can focus better on your work.
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How effective is ergonomics?

2. Ergonomics improves productivity. – The best ergonomic solutions will often improve productivity. By designing a job to allow for good posture, less exertion, fewer motions and better heights and reaches, the workstation becomes more efficient.

25% increase in productivity

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Why does ergonomics improve quality of work?

Benefits of a Workplace Ergonomics Process – Here are five of the proven benefits of a strong workplace ergonomics process: 1. Ergonomics reduces costs. By systematically reducing ergonomic risk factors, you can prevent costly MSDs. With approximately $1 out of every $3 in workers compensation costs attributed to MSDs, this represents an opportunity for significant cost savings.

Also, don’t forget that indirect costs can be up to twenty times the direct cost of an injury.2. Ergonomics improves productivity. The best ergonomic solutions will often improve productivity. By designing a job to allow for good posture, less exertion, fewer motions and better heights and reaches, the workstation becomes more efficient.3.

Ergonomics improves quality. Poor ergonomics leads to frustrated and fatigued workers that don’t do their best work. When the job task is too physically taxing on the worker, they may not perform their job like they were trained. For example, an employee might not fasten a screw tight enough due to a high force requirement which could create a product quality issue.4.

  1. Ergonomics improves employee engagement.
  2. Employees notice when the company is putting forth their best efforts to ensure their health and safety.
  3. If an employee does not experience fatigue and discomfort during their workday, it can reduce turnover, decrease absenteeism, improve morale and increase employee involvement.5.

Ergonomics creates a better safety culture. Ergonomics shows your company’s commitment to safety and health as a core value. The cumulative effect of the previous four benefits of ergonomics is a stronger safety culture for your company. Healthy employees are your most valuable asset; creating and fostering the safety & health culture at your company will lead to better human performance for your organization.
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How ergonomics creates a better safety culture?

1. Ergonomics makes work easier for people – Ergonomics matches the capabilities of people with their work environment. The result is less stressful work on the person’s body and mind, making the work more enjoyable and productive. Ultimately this makes work more satisfying, boosting the employee’s belief, attitude, and perception of the safety of the job and organization they work for.
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How can ergonomics reduce physical stress?

Four Simple Ergonomic Steps to a More Productive Workplace Workplace ergonomics is getting a lot of attention nationwide in response to a sharp increase in musculoskeletal disorders such as carpal tunnel syndrome. These occupational injuries often mean repeated surgery, intractable pain, inability to work, time off for the affected employee and ultimately, higher costs for the employer.

Factors such as work surfaces at the wrong height, uncomfortable chairs, shelves and bins that are too high or out of reach and awkward hand tools all contribute to increased risk of musculoskeletal injuries and negatively can impact productivity. See Also: Paying attention to ergonomics means removing barriers to work productivity.

There is a wealth of options available to adjust the workspace to meet employees’ ergonomic needs, and selecting the right options can help employees reap significant bottom line rewards. Comfortable employees stay at their desks or workstations longer, and complete more work in a given shift.

Employers who pay attention to these four simple steps are well on their way to gaining these rewards. By adapting tasks, workstations, tools and equipment to fit the worker, ergonomics seeks to reduce physical stress on a worker’s body and eliminate many potentially serious, disabling work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).

If work tasks and equipment do not include ergonomic principles in their design, workers may experience physical stress, strain and overexertion, including exposure to vibration, awkward postures, forceful exertions, repetitive motion and heavy lifting.
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How can ergonomics help prevent repetitive stress injury?

The premise of Ergonomics is to reduce physical strain by designing or modifying the work station, work methods, and tools to eliminate excessive exertion and awkward postures and to reduce repetitive motion.
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Why is ergonomics important in the workplace quizlet?

The proper ergonomic work environment and equipment can help reduce strain on the body and prevent injury. Jobs that require employees to maintain a quick pace or to repeat the same action for a long period of time can pose health and safety risks.
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What are ergonomics in the workplace?

Ergonomics – Environment, Health and Safety Ergonomics can roughly be defined as the study of people in their working environment. More specifically, an ergonomist (pronounced like economist ) designs or modifies the work to fit the worker, not the other way around.

  • The goal is to eliminate discomfort and risk of injury due to work.
  • In other words, the employee is our first priority in analyzing a workstation.
  • Officially: “Ergonomics (or human factors) is the scientific discipline concerned with the understanding of the interactions among human and other elements of a system, and the profession that applies theory, principles, data and methods to design in order to optimize human well-being and overall system performance.” International Ergonomics Association Executive Council, August 2000 When evaluating a job, looking for three main characteristics known as ergonomic stressors: the force required to complete a task, any awkward or static working postures adopted in completing a task, and the repetitiveness of a task.
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Any of these factors, or any combination of these factors, may place someone at greater risk for discomfort.
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Why is ergonomics very important in the workplace specifically in the hospitality industry?

Ergonomic Design and Lean Management in the Hospitality Industry in India With an increasing focus on wellness, hotel and restaurant interiors have become more than just an aesthetic appeal. The curation of a well-designed space enhances the purpose for which it was intended.

As a result, ergonomics will play a key role in hospitality projects enclosing multi-purpose spaces ranging from guest rooms to conference halls to bars and restaurants. It is critical to get the correct layout to amplify the customer experience, using empathetic design to map out a guest’s journey from room to room with seamless efficiency.

However, hotel owners, especially in India, are yet to discover the benefits of an ergonomic and sustainable product, which benefits both the guests and the employees alike. An ergonomic design and structure can improve employee productivity, efficiency and safety, thus enhancing the overall profitability. How Do Those Who Study Workplace Ergonomics Help Decrease Workplace Injury Some examples of ergonomic designs (based on the hotel positioning) include but are not limited to; Interiors

Investing in hard-surface elements, such as wood-grain vinyl flooring as compared to carpeting is more durable, easy to maintain and has a charm about it. Carpets, meanwhile, require more maintenance and manpower and are not a durable solution as they attract dust and will only do more harm in the current pandemic. Considering shower cubicles instead of tubs in the bathrooms as this will result in smaller space to clean and is more environment-friendly.


Considering LED lighting versus traditional lighting fixtures, which consume more energy and are harder to maintain. LEDs come in multiple designs and are by far the most cost-effective option. Occupancy sensors may also be considered as an alternative for certain areas as minimizing costs when needed is necessary.

Dynamic Spaces

Using hotel spaces in a dynamic manner to avoid construction of additional structures or decommissioning of existing ones. For instance, a lobby and co-working space can be converted into a lounge in the evenings. Common spaces for multi-functionality, such as dividing large conference halls into zones — a work zone, a lounge zone, a play zone and an F&B zone. Curating spaces for differently abled guests. For example, the allocated guest room should have low height furniture, low peep hole, cupboard with low cloth hanger, audible and visible blinking light for doorbell and alarm. Making sure the washrooms are differently abled friendly and building specialized ramps for people in wheelchairs across the property.

Technology upgrades

Technology is constantly upgrading whether it is in the POS systems or revenue management. Today we have QR coded menus and contactless service. Therefore, a tangible solution is to indulge in agile architecture that can easily accommodate these changes. In addition, using analytics and big data helps to better understand the consumer base and personalize services.

Apart from design and structural changes, implementing an ergonomics program can help trim operating expenses by reducing costs and improving productivity. A common and effective program is “Lean Management”. Lean Management optimizes the flow of products and services through value streams to create efficient processes which require less human effort, space, capital and time. How Do Those Who Study Workplace Ergonomics Help Decrease Workplace Injury A critical error we see in restaurants and hotels every day is the manager or owner attempting to find solutions to real time problems instead of identifying the root cause of the problem. By taking a step back and correcting the process, a lot of energy and time could be saved, making the business more efficient. Some examples of lean management include:

Cross training employees so they can multitask and feel motivated Empowering employees to give suggestions and feedback Creatively cutting the bottom line by regularly training staff and re-looking at vendor options Regularly investing in property maintenance Re-engineering operations to better meet the customers’ needs Menu engineering in accordance with the locally sourced produce

In today’s world it is essential for hotel investors and owners to consider all elements of design and efficiency which drive revenue per square foot. Ergonomically designed hotels with operational efficiencies and lean management is the ideal mix. The key here is to achieve a balanced-functional structure and marry operational efficiency with eye catching design, without compromising on class or style in any way.

We believe that great results can be achieved from a very early stage by choosing the right architect, consultant, brand and operator — a short-term investment for long term profitability and sustainability. Design is ultimately an ever-changing response to the needs of our society. Our collective response to post-pandemic life may seem inept but these are just growing pains that we have when faced with a new challenge.

While the global scale and urgency may be unprecedented when stacked up against recent memory, in time public spaces will return to normal function—expertly curated to go totally unnoticed by the end user. : Ergonomic Design and Lean Management in the Hospitality Industry in India
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What is the importance of ergonomics in human factors?

Human Factors: The Business Benefits – If you think safety’s expensive, try having an accident Managing human failures is essential to prevent major accidents, occupational accidents and ill health, all of which can cost businesses money, reputation and potentially their continued existence.

  1. Successful businesses achieve high productivity and quality while ensuring health and safety.
  2. Good technology combined with the best work systems can help to achieve these goals.
  3. The best work systems are based on having a skilled workforce, with well-designed jobs that are appropriate to individuals’ abilities.

The influence of biological, psychological and organisational factors on an individual at work can affect their health and safety, but it also affects their efficiency and productivity. For example, if:

Someone needs to exert a large proportion of their strength to complete a task they are more likely to suffer injury and carry out the task inefficiently – possibly causing damage to the product and tools; or The mental demands of a task are too high, perhaps involving diagnosing faults under significant time pressures then there can be both a health issue for the employee but also a quality, and possibly safety issue for the production line, process and plant; or Individuals have very limited scope for determining how to do their job then they may lack motivation and job satisfaction and be less effective at work.

Individuals have a wide range of abilities and limitations. A Human Factors (or Ergonomics) approach focuses on how to make the best use of these capabilities: by designing jobs and equipment which are fit for people. This not only improves their health and safety but often ensures a better managed, more effective organisation.
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