Offices can benefit from the use of ergonomic furniture in a number of ways. Even though most desk jobs aren’t really considered to be dangerous or hazardous, unlike other kinds of work, you can still sustain some mild injuries and health issues because of certain conditions in your office.
In fact, office employees that work primarily at desks are prone to developing workplace-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). These include:
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Muscle strain
- Sprains and tears
- Back pain
To some, these injuries may not seem too bad, and it could be possible to just power through them. However, MSDs can actually have a negative impact on workplace performance. They can contribute to decreased productivity, absenteeism, increased need for healthcare, increased worker’s comp costs, and more. Thus, efforts to prevent MSDs benefit both the employer and the employees.
One of the best ways to prevent MSDs is the use of ergonomic office furniture. Ergonomic furniture refers to chairs, tables, desks, and other workplace furniture that can be easily modified or adjusted to help make users more comfortable and less prone to MSDs. However, aside from preventing MSDs, ergonomic furniture can also offer much more. It can help boost productivity, improve working conditions, and generally make each workday better for employers and employees.
A lot of office furniture pieces tend to be uncomfortable. There’s always something just a bit off -- maybe a chair has a back that’s too straight, maybe a desk is a tad too high or a tad too low, or maybe the combination of both your desk and chair is too uncomfortable for you.
Of course, comfort is an important thing to have in the workplace. After all, people spend a significant amount of your waking hours at work. An ergonomic chair or desk can help increase comfort by helping your body get into the right position.
Does this mean that non-ergonomic furniture is automatically uncomfortable? No, but ergonomic furniture is comfortable in such a way that it increases productivity. A typical couch or armchair can be considered to be highly comfortable, but they are not meant to increase productivity (you might even say that they are meant to do the opposite). Thus, ergonomic furniture allows you to be comfortable while also enabling you to work or study well.
A lot of chairs and tables used in the office are not ergonomic, and can thus be uncomfortable. Discomfort can impact productivity and even cause health problems, so ergonomic furniture can definitely make a difference in a lot of workplaces.
With your run-of-the-mill furniture, what you see is typically what you get and there’s not much room for adjustment. You’ll perhaps be able to do things like use cushions for better lumbar support or neck support, and you might also be able to adjust the heights of desks or tables by using table risers or extending the legs themselves.
Of course, all of the above would entail additional purchases and additional trips to the store, just to make small adjustments. Ergonomic furniture, however, are designed to be adjustable in ways that can help you put your body in an optimal position. If, for example, you’re too tall or too short to sit comfortably at typical desk, an ergonomic desk might work best for you.
Ergonomic chairs work in much the same way. These chairs can provide lumbar support without the need to purchase any cushions, and they can also have adjustable armrests and heights.
Furniture like ergonomic desks, tables, and chairs are like tailored clothes. Tailored clothes offer the perfect fit, and so does ergonomic furniture.
Reduced Repetitive Strain Injuries
Certain conditions in the workplace can lead to the development of musculoskeletal disorders and repetitive strain injuries. Repetitive strain injuries, as the name might suggest, are injuries caused by repetitive movements. This can include movements like reaching for the computer mouse, typing, and other such mundane tasks that fill much of an office worker’s day. Sitting with bad posture can also lead to problems with your neck and back.
Sitting with bad posture may not seem like a big deal, at least in the moment. However, after a long day at the office, you might notice some back pain, a crick in your neck, some knots in your shoulders, and more. These injuries might also seem like they’re not so bad, but if they are recurrent, they can impact your health and your performance at work. They can get worse and lead to you having to take time off to recover.
Ergonomic furniture can help you prevent musculoskeletal disorders and repetitive strain injuries. Just a few adjustments to the height of your chair or desk can already do wonders for your comfort and health.
Improved Mental Health
Constant discomfort at work can take a toll not only on your physical health, but also on your mental health. You might start dreading going to work if you don’t feel comfortable in the environment you’re in for much of the day. Physical pain can have a significant impact on your self-esteem, and it can also cause anxiety, depression, anger, and frustration.
It’s clear that we can’t compartmentalize physical symptoms and mental symptoms. The mental stress of your job, compounded by the physical strain, can lead to long-term consequences. If an ergonomic chair or desk can prevent all this from happening, then it’s definitely worth the purchase.
Of course, it’s important to note that a piece of furniture, no matter how nice or ergonomic it is, is not going to single-handedly “cure” anyone of physical or mental ailments. However, it can definitely be helpful.
If a person feels good physically and mentally, odds are that they’ll be more productive at work. Improved productivity is definitely something that ergonomic furniture can help you with.
With improved productivity comes better work quality. A marked improvement in your work can be helpful to you in the long run, especially in terms of promotions and raises. The better you work, the more you prove to your supervisors and employers that you’re definitely a good candidate for more lucrative positions. You’ll also be able to build a good reputation within your industry, which can definitely be beneficial in the future.
If you’re running a company, getting ergonomic furniture is surely worth considering. After all, it is in the company’s best interests when employees are more productive and efficient.
So how does ergonomic furniture help improve productivity? For one thing, an ergonomic chair can relieve pressure off of your back, helping you sit with proper posture. This can then promote efficiency. By lessening repetitive strain injuries, ergonomic chairs and desks will help employees reduce the time they spend away from work.
Better Work Quality
Does efficiency mean quality as well? Of course. With ergonomic furniture, employees will be able to focus more on their work and less on whatever discomfort they feel. Because ergonomic furniture can help improve both physical and mental health in the workplace, it will follow that your work quality will improve as well.
Companies do a variety of things to help their employees improve their work. They invest in trainings, seminars, and the like, but better furniture hasn’t been considered just as much. It may be surprising, but even a small change like buying ergonomic chairs for every workstation can also produce significant results. Ergonomic furniture is definitely an investment; a single purchase can benefit you in many ways.
Small and relatively inexpensive changes to the workplace can save the company financial losses and can have huge returns. Conceivably, an adjustment in the height of a desk or improved lumbar support in a chair can help improve the quality of work produced by employees. While ergonomic furniture is of course no replacement for additional training or further education, it is still well worth the investment.
Value for Money
As discussed above, ergonomic furniture is a great investment because it can help employees improve their efficiency and the quality of their output. However, good quality ergonomic furniture is also sturdy and durable.
Offices are prone to being filled with cheap furniture bought in bulk. After all, buying cheap furniture in bulk can save the company money. However, shelling out a bit more for high-quality furniture is well worth the expense. It won’t need to be replaced quite as often, and employees won’t have to endure using furniture with peeling paint, deformed surfaces, and missing or damaged parts.
However, on Engineer Warehouse, you can buy ergonomic furniture in bulk at discounted prices.
Commonly, it’s a better idea to just buy the somewhat more expensive but high-quality versions of various products. The same principle applies when it comes to office furniture. If you keep buying low-quality cheap furniture, you’ll end up having to replace or repair it more often. The amount you spend on replacing or repairing furniture can eventually be equal to or more than the amount you would have spent if you had bought high-quality ergonomic furniture in the first place.
Furthermore, because ergonomic furniture helps reduce repetitive strain injuries, it can also help companies spend less on worker’s comp.
Office furniture design can range from drab to pretty. Even the cheap stuff can look good, as long as they’re new, of course. However, ergonomic furniture is often designed to be efficient, durable, and visually pleasing.
Ergonomic furniture can come in a sleek modern style, which has clean lines and solid, striking colors. Furniture like this usually fits in well in flexible work environments and collaborative professional and academic spaces. There is a wide variety of designs that you can choose from, and you’ll definitely be able to find something that will fit in well with your office.
Furthermore, ergonomic furniture is typically made of high-quality materials. This ensures that not only is the furniture aesthetically pleasing, but also durable.
It will always be in the company’s best interests to make sure that employees are happy at work. Keeping employee morale up can be difficult and complicated at times, but ensuring comfort at the workplace is a good place to start. Buying ergonomic furniture is a good and relatively simple way to boost morale at the office. It shows employees that the company cares about their comfort and well-being and is willing to spend a bit more money to keep them happy.
Good morale is often overlooked, but it’s important to both employees and employers. Employees with good morale who feel like their employees care about them are more likely to perform well and are more likely to feel like they’ll be rewarded for hard work.
Happier employees are also more likely to pay more attention to detail and are more likely to stay on, reducing employee turnover. They’ll also care more about the quality of their work and will likely feel more loyalty to their employers.
Simply changing the kind of furniture you have in the workplace can be beneficial in many ways to both employers and employees.
Promotes Better Posture
Having good posture has long been considered to be a sign of good breeding and manners, but it’s also much more than that. Good posture doesn’t just make you look good; it can also contribute to good health. It can keep the proper alignment of your bones, which ensures that you’re using your muscles correctly and efficiently. The efficient use of muscles, meanwhile, helps prevent fatigue. This can help you have more energy and thus accomplish more tasks in a day.
As discussed above, ergonomic furniture helps promote good posture, even when you’re concentrating on your work and you’re not thinking much about your posture. An ergonomic chair, for example, will help your body fall naturally into the correct position with little to no effort on your part.
Good posture while sitting at a desk entails the following: relaxed shoulders, elbows folded at a 90-degree angle, feet flat on the floor, a small gap between your knees and the seat, and keeping your knees at the same level as your hips. Not all chairs will be able to allow you to meet all these requirements, but ergonomic chairs will definitely allow you to make the right adjustments for your comfort.Ergonomic furniture is definitely well worth the purchase, and offers a wide variety of benefits for employees and employers. Check out ergonomic furniture options and more on Engineer Warehouse.