By Suzanne Gainey
With the Dow Jones Industrial Average reaching record-breaking highs of 26,000 and the unemployment rate marching down, the economic picture is looking positive. However, even the novice worker knows that nothing will last forever. How can your company stand out and keep an edge in a booming economy? Ergonomic productivity innovations might be something you haven’t thought about yet. With worker injury and fatigue on the rise, ergonomic solutions can provide just the edge you may be looking for to keep your workforce going strong in an upward economy.
When the economy is booming, workers often work more overtime to meet the demands of the marketplace. More working time could result in more workplace repetitive use injuries and more. According to Ergo Plus approximately $1 out of every $3 in worker’s compensation costs are attributed to these types of injuries. Providing a work environment that reduces repetitive use injuries is an opportunity for significant cost savings for any employer.
Furthermore, indirect costs from an injury can also lead to up to twenty times the direct cost of the injury itself. With stats like this, employers could save their bottom line by implementing ergonomic innovations in the workplace.
You may be wondering what the primary risk factors are that you should be thinking about regarding ergonomics. Ergo Plus reports that there are three primary ergonomic risk factors to consider.
- High task Repetition
Many work tasks and cycles are repetitive in nature and are frequently controlled by hourly or daily production targets and work processes. High task repetition, when combined with other risks factors such as high force and/or awkward postures, can contribute to the formation of a musculo-skeletal disorder (MSD). A job is considered highly repetitive if the cycle time is 30 seconds or less.
- Forceful Exertions
Many work tasks require high force loads on the human body. Muscle effort increases in response to high force requirements, increasing associated fatigue which can lead to an MSD.
- Repetitive or Sustained Awkward Postures
Awkward postures place excessive force on joints and overload the muscles and tendons around the effected joint. Joints of the body are most efficient when they operate closest to the mid-range motion of the joint. Risk of an MSD is increased when joints are worked outside of this mid-range repetitively or for sustained periods of time without adequate recovery time.
As you can see, exposure to these workplace risk factors puts workers at a higher level of MSD risk. These are the types of factors that can be at least mitigated by ergonomic innovations. We would also like to add to this list for the standing workers, what are they standing on? Are your workers standing on a hard or unforgiving flooring surface, such as concrete, for long hours while they are completing repetitive tasks as described above? If so, SmartCells has custom flooring solutions for virtually any workspace or workstation configuration.
We know that it isn’t easy staying ahead of the many challenges businesses face today, no matter the economic status. At SmartCells, we provide solutions to top companies such as Amazon, Costco, and Boeing to name a few. SmartCells® Cushioning Technology mats, flooring and insoles are ergonomically engineered to help your workforce feel great, and meet your ergonomic health, safety, and productivity needs.
Do More. Feel Good. With SmartCells. www.smartcellsusa.com .