A Brief Overview of the Future of Computer Ergonomics

A Brief Overview of the Future of Computer Ergonomics

Computers can perform repetitive tasks faster and with fewer mistakes than humans, so the first few years of computers being used in the business world were concentrated on automating a wide range of industrial processes.

The statistics speak for themselves: Worker productivity in the United States had been increasing at an annual rate of 1 percent to 1.5 percent since the early 1970s, but the productivity rate started to increase dramatically in the mid-1990s, and averaged 2.9 percent from 1995 to 2000. Many economists, noted that this rise in productivity occurred during the same period when computers became common in workplaces, and credit computer-related information technology for the increase.

Why Ergonomics Matters

Ergonomics is a science that helps align products to users and jobs to workers. The word ergonomics comes from a combination of two Greek words: ergon, which means “work,” and nomos, which means “natural laws.” Sometimes ergonomics can be referred to as human engineering, biotechnology, or human factors.

Not only does ergonomics cover items that improve working conditions, it also includes how the products you use in your daily life are designed. But ergonomics can refer not only to the way objects are designed, but also the way they are arranged for optimum use.

It’s easy to look at ergonomics as an expense rather than an investment. But think about it this way: many people choose a car for its safety features, believing those features are worth the cost of protecting themselves and their families. Businesses who purchase ergonomic products for their employees demonstrate their commitment to their health and well-being. More and more organizations are beginning to realize the importance of helping their people prevent injuries that can be more costly down the line, when weighed against the costs for sick time, short- or long-term disability, and insurance premiums.

One of the most important employee perks is workplace ergonomics, which fosters a safety and health culture as a core value. People recognize the value of walking into a safe workplace; with the knowledge that their employer wants to keep their team healthy, employees are likely to be happier at work. Reducing ergonomic problems leads to fewer sick days, fewer injuries, and can reduce long-term, cumulative issues that can shorten a worker’s career. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons says office workers can help prevent back pain by standing at least once every hour to move around—at least stretch, if not walk around a little.

Ergonomics and Computer Workstations

A lot of early ergonomics research was directed toward industrial professions. For example, the risks of musculoskeletal disorders for someone who operates a jackhammer may be high, that doesn’t negate the risk for office workers; however, risks to office workers wasn’t immediately recognized. In more recent years, experts have learned that ergonomic products are important in all types of workplaces.

Repetitive motion injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome can occur when workers are improperly positioned or uncomfortable while working. Musculoskeletal problems can occur in workers in all industries, from the assembly line to the office. And the latest research demonstrates that too much sitting can be detrimental to your overall health.

More and more companies are creating ergonomic products for the workplace, like electric adjustable desks and under-desk keyboard trays. These products can help you work more comfortably, which translates into working more safely. Improving your workstation’s ergonomics can help you improve your posture, which in turn helps reduce fatigue, stiffness, and soreness.

Whether you want to modernize your home office or your workplace, ergonomic products are the way to go—especially electric height adjustable computer workstations. These desks not only have the latest features, they’re ergonomically friendly and will blend perfectly with your modern design.

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