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Working remotely is a great opportunity for most workers today. Workers can do their tasks in the comfort of their homes or while on a vacation. More and more workers are switching to remote working because they can avoid the arduous commutes that add stress to the tasks. Also, your personal items are accessible at home, thus making your work more convenient. Managing employees, task delegation, and communication are done with the help of reliable platforms that are now available. You can also have a customized workspace depending on your style and preference. However, it is also important for remote workers to consider health and productivity. That is why proper desk ergonomics for remote workers must be applied.
Ergonomics is a factor often overlooked in the workplace. However, this should be on top of the priorities of managers and company owners. It is vital to use resources, tools, and equipment to better support workers in making the most value to the work environment. This will also ensure better work results and satisfaction to motivate the workers.
According to some studies, there has been a significant increase in the number of workers who are working remotely and are using ergonomic items in the workplace. This increase is possibly due to the following benefit of applying ergonomics:
#1 Reduced costs. Applying ergonomic measures in the company will help reduce the risk factors of acquiring musculoskeletal diseases (MSDs). MSDs are said to be acquired due to poor posture and repetitive movements. When you use ergonomic equipment, such as an ergonomic chair and standing desks, you will be able to work safer and comfortably, thus, health problems will be avoided. This can reduce the company’s expenses in case workers will be sick and absent.
#2 Boosts productivity level. Office ergonomics are proven to boost the levels of productivity. When an office is ergonomically organized, it will help promote good posture, making workers feel comfortable at work. They can perform their jobs with a higher level of efficiency without sacrificing the quality of the work results.
#3 Improves employee engagement. Office ergonomics are proven to reduce work turnovers, boost morale, lessen absenteeism, and enhance employee engagement. They appreciate the company as well as their jobs more because they feel that their health and performance are valued by their employers.
#4 Delivers quality work results. Poor ergonomics in the workplace can make employees feel irritated and may fail to work on their best efforts. They will miss vital details or give the clients and customers some unsatisfactory work results. They can experience problems when they are using an uncomfortable chair or a desk that is too high or too low for them. This is the reason why applying office ergonomics is a must for every company.
#5 Promotes safety culture. Employers must invest in ergonomic equipment and tools to ensure productivity and efficiency at work. This is a strategy to show how a company is committed to safety and health. Ensuring the health and safety of all the people in the workplace must be a core value of the company. This is a way to promote a stronger work culture and take care of the employees’ welfare.
The following are the main items essentials for every workstation of a remote worker
#1 Work desk. A work desk is where you place the common items you are using in your daily work. To create an ergonomic work desk, you can use a standing desk or a desk converter. Standing desks are proven to aid you in preventing the bad effects of being stuck on sitting, such as digestive issues, back pain, and strain. On the other hand, a desk converter is an item that can be attached to either your existing desk or a new one. This is also ideal equipment because this allows you to alternate between sitting and standing. Ergonomic experts advise remote workers to stand every after 30 minutes or an hour, to make sure that they are doing slow movements. Prolonged hours of sitting can be dangerous and may cause serious health problems.
#2 Ergonomic Chair. An ergonomic chair should have lumbar support, armrest, comfortable seat, and other features that will help you work comfortably while seated. See AnthroDesk’s ergonomic hair here.
#3 Noise-cancelling earphones. Not all workplaces are free from noise and distractions. There are workplaces that are close to machine operating or noisy backgrounds. To avoid being distracted and remain your focus, then it will be great if you can have an earphone or headset with noise-cancelling features.
#4 Floor padding. Floor padding helps you keep your feet at a comfortable rest. When buying one, always make sure that it’s of high-quality and is offered by reliable manufacturers.
#5 Anti-fatigue mats. When you’re using a standing desk, you should also have an anti-fatigue mat to prevent you from experiencing fatigue and having varicose veins.
#6 Ergonomic Mouse. Using an ergonomic mouse will help you avoid the risk of having health conditions caused by long hours of typing, encoding, or designing.
#7 Keyboard and keyboard tray. The placement of the keyboard and keyboard tray on your desk is also very important. They should be in the proper position to avoid pain wrists and conditions such as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Repetitive strain Injuries(RSI).
#8 Monitor mounts. Position your monitor at an eye level to make sure that you will not have strains or neck pain. Use high-quality monitor mounts to position your computer monitor properly.
#9 Other desk accessories such as cable management wire, desk lamp, and mobile phone holder.
CNBC published an article entitled, “Cheap ways to make your work-from-home space more ergonomic and better for your back” which shared some tips on how to have more comfortable work experience and prevent having back pain. The tips are recommended by Karen Jacobs, a certified ergonomist, occupational therapist, and a clinical professor. Some of these tips include taking breaks, changing your posture often, placing a pillow on your seat, putting a rolled towel for your lumbar support, having your feet on an elevated space, positioning your laptop properly, and using an ergonomic chair.
Applying proper ergonomics to your desk can create a big impact on your performance at work.
The following tips should be also considered to ensure that you will work effectively when working remotely.
#1 Find your natural posture
#2 Apply the ideal height for your desk
#3 Set up your monitor properly
#4 Utilize an ergonomic chair
#5 User ergonomic mouse and keyboard, and place them properly on your desk
#6 Be mindful about colour psychology
#7 Make sure to have proper lighting
#8 Learn how to deal with sounds in the workplace
#9 Include plants on your desk
#10 Keep the temperature in the workplace comfortable for workers
We’ve created an infographic for your reference. See below.