The Economics of Ergonomics: Selecting the Right Office Furniture
Every company has a goal of supporting its workforce. The support comes in the form of paying salary and benefits to employees, giving them office space, and even making sure their specific workspace meets their needs. Ergonomics often get a rush job when talking about office design space planning. You get companies that spend months designing an office, only to make a decision on office furniture in a day or two with minimal research and thought. Great office design is only as good as its furniture.
When you design an office, you need the full vision in mind. You have to understand how the design of the office will flow with furniture, with lighting, storage, etc. Without having the details in-between the book covers, you may end up with an empty space, one that does not fulfill its mission. Aura Office Environments combats that with the design-centric customer journey. Putting ergonomics front of mind can help you increase productivity and make the spend worth every cent.
To do ergonomics right, you need to understand the concept. Ergonomics is one of the most misunderstood terms in office design space planning. Ergonomics is all about designing or arranging a workspace, inclusive of any system and products necessary, to meet the needs of each individual.
An easy example of poor ergonomics is a chair that does not adjust up or down. If you have a tall or short employee, the lack of adjustment of the chair will harm their comfort level. The chair may work great for one height of a person, but we are all different and unique. You need to think through an ergonomics approach so each employee is comfortable and effective.
How They Can Impact the Workplace
Ergonomics has a huge impact on the workplace via a variety of categories. Safety is top of mind, as well as comfort, and productivity. Diving deep into these three areas, you will see right it is pivotal to choose furniture that meets employee needs.
Employees should be safe when they are at work. If you do not have proper furniture for employees, though, safety may be at risk. The adjustable chair example is a prime one where you need that for employees of a variety of heights. You can run into back injuries and a slew of other issues when employees cannot adjust how they sit. If your office space involves some manufacturing and such as well, having segregation from that area with furniture can help to avoid accidents.
- Comfort – Every employee wants to work in a different way. You need to have furniture that helps employees be comfortable at work. Having proper desk spaces that allow for sitting and standing is a given. It is when you think outside of the box that you can do awesome things with furniture and ergonomics. Employees may use a combination of quality, comfortable furniture and new technology to drive collaboration at meetings. Having a few couches available for folks to sit back and unwind for a bit can help productivity, engagement from individuals.
No one wants to sit in their cubicle at work for hours on end every day. The employees want variety and they want different types of furniture where they can get a different view every now and then. The role of comfort is all about engagement and productivity and it can work.
- Productivity – There is no denying that you can increase productivity in the workplace with ergonomics. The economics of ergonomics title is all about using ergonomics as a way to increase the profitability of the business. How does this work exactly? Take two employees that do the same exact job. The first employee is stuck in a cubicle all day long in a chair they cannot adjust, with one single monitor they work on, in a weather noisy environment. The second employee has options of where they can work, with couches, chairs, their standard cube space. The second employee has two or three monitors available to them at any given time, in a quiet environment more suitable for focus, collaboration, and analysis. Which of the two employees is going to have a more productive day?
Studies showcase the economics of ergonomics as well. According to one such study done, a fast food provider made a decision to resign workstations to include the dimensions of the human body. The height and such were all taken into account. When the fast food provider did this redesign, they found that change drove a 20% increase in productivity. A steel company went through with a redesign of an observation pit. The reduction in waste and increase in productivity led to a savings of $150,000 in the first year alone.
Having Flexibility in the Design
There is no one size fits all when it comes to ergonomics. It is all about having a concept in mind when it comes to space planning. You want to have a general idea of the furniture you will choose, knowing that each piece has to encompass flexibility. No employees are of the same size; you do not hire robots! Every individual has their own needs and ergonomics help ensure those needs get met every day.
Ergonomics can help in the profitability space of each business. Having proper space planning can allow for employee positivity, safety, comfort, and engagement to all skyrocket. Work with the team at Aura to go through the space planning, design process. Ensure that furniture is top of mind so that ergonomic goals and associated benefits all get realization.