Have you had a Workstation Assessment or a DSE Risk Assessment? How do you set up your workstation Ergonomically?

Workstation Assessment –  6 Tips to review your set up

When working with Display Screen Equipment (DSE) various problems can occur if you are not set up correctly. These can include back, neck, shoulder, arm, wrist and hand pain.  Symptoms can become worse, affecting the health and productivity of workers.

Alison Biggs of Healthywork Ltd, gives Ergonomic Workstation advice to help minimise common problems and comply with current legislation.

The HSE website gives guidance to comply with the DSE Regulations 1992/2002 and provide two useful detailed publications – The law on VDUs: An easy guide and Work with display screen equipment: Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations 1992. Some give practical guidance, in plain language, on how to comply with the Regulations with a minimum of effort and expense.

Of all the advice available on office ergonomics, Alison recommends that sitting posture is the most important. There are several movement mechanism options available on office chairs and all chair users should use their chair in an unlocked mode to prevent static postures. Cheaper chairs may not allow the chair back rest to remain unlocked during use.  Or the chair back rest and seat are fixed so do not change the angle in the hip and low back region. This static postures causes stiffness, so pain and discomfort continue.

6 Workstation Tips

Set your workplace up

Here are some more general tips to help improve ergonomics when sitting at a computer workstation:

  1. Chair Height – Adjust the height of your office chair to allow your elbows to be horizontal with the keys and then rest your feet rest flat on the floor or on a footrest so your thighs are parallel to the floor, with the hips and knees horizontal. For more detailed chair advice see: Pain using an Office Chair: 7 Top Tips
  2. Frequently Used Objects within Easy Reach – Keep frequently used objects such as the phone, keyboard, mouse etc within easy reach to avoid over-reaching and bending. Elbows remain by your side.
  3. Keep Wrists Straight and equipment at same Height -Place your keyboard and mouse on the same surface height, keep your wrists straight when keying. For more detailed advice see: Pain using a keyboard: 9 Top Tips.  Avoid extended mouse use. Use keyboard shortcuts for Microsoft or shortcuts for Apple Mac . For more detailed advice see: Pain using a mouse: 12 Top Tips
  4. Consider a Headset if you Talk and Type – If you frequently speak on the telephone, or have to simultaneously use the keyboard during calls, either use a telephone headset or place the call on hands free/loud speaker mode to avoid neck strain and allow use of both hands.
  5. Place the monitor at Eye Level – The top of your monitor should be at eye level and directly in front of you at an arm’s length distance. For more detailed advice see: Pain using a Monitor: 7 Top Tips. 
  6. Take a Break – Take micro-breaks during tasks, and rest breaks away from the computer.

We hope this information is useful and practical advice. You may need a Workstation Assessment for further professional advice about your set up. This can prevent issues in the future or resolve issues you are currently experiencing.

A prevention assessment for no symptoms or minor/occasional symptoms, see DSE Workstation Risk Assessment. to fulfil the HSE DSE Regulations 1992

If you have ongoing health needs, you may need a more in depth review,  see Ergonomic Workstation Assessment. to also advise on reasonable adjustments under the Equality Act 2010.

Contact Us for further advice. Tell us your circumstances and we can advise what assessment will be needed.

Alison Biggs

DISCLAIMER: THIS WEBSITE DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. This information is not intended to be patient education, does not create any patient-physician relationship, and it is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regime, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

Healthywork Ltd does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions or other information that may be mentioned on this website. Reliance on any information appearing on this website is solely at your own risk.

How to Set Up Your Workstation Ergonomically

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GMG Color Ltd

Ergonomic Assessment Functional Capacity Assessment Evaluation DSE Assessment Workstation Milton Keynes Cambridge Oxford North London - gmg

‘I contacted Alison a couple of months ago and she came up to see me and my team quite recently, Alison was very thorough with everyone, some people needed an hour with her others just 10 minutes, however everybody got something out of her visit, the visit was informative but not long winded and not rushed.

I was also very impressed with the level of information supplied for each individual after the visit, which has enabled me to order what was needed (however I could have done without the cost this involved!!).

Overall I would highly recommend Alison and Healthywork Ltd’. (June 2017)

Ian Probert
GMG Color Ltd

AME

Alison has carried out 100s of assessments for AME some of which have involved multi disciplinary work with other stakeholders such as physiotherapists, computer technicians. Her work with the NHS and medical knowledge has brought an enhanced level of credibility to the work based employment assessment that she undertakes.

Clients trust her, she is diplomatic and highly professional at all times even when placed under considerable pressure to meet tight deadlines and juggle conflicting priorities.

Andy Taylor, Access Made Easy

KMG Health Partners Ltd

Alison Biggs has been a Specialised Assessor on KMG Health Partners roster since its UK inception in 2004. We highly recommend her based on her knowledge, skills, diversity, quality and client / customer care. She has also been extremely flexible with scheduling and geographic locations. You can expect positive outcomes from accessing her service.

Ergonomic Assessments, Functional Capacity Evaluations and Job Demands Analysis for clients over the UK: including, Devon, Bristol, Kent, London, Berkshire, Wiltshire, Bedfordshire, Stoke-on-Trent, Yorkshire and Northern Ireland.

Gail Kovacs

HEFCE

Healthywork Ltd have been extremely helpful over the last year and provided us with a very good service at very short notice.

The quality of their work place assessment reports and recommendations are extremely high. In addition, the employees involved have commented on the extremely helpful knowledge and support provided by the work place assessor.

(Assessments provided in Bristol and Central London).

Sarah de Vere, HR Manager, Higher Education Funding Council for England, based in Bristol
HEFCE

UNUM

Alison is professional at all times, she is easy to work with, adaptable and open to discussing how, through the reports she produces she can meet the changing needs of her clients.

Elaine Cook

FCE testimonial by WTW

FCE testimonial by WTW

FCE testimonial by WTW

I met with our client, Electrolux on Friday to review all their services and they couldn’t praise your recent report highly enough.  It is enabling them to work with the employee much more constructively. They advised that they will not hesitate to use your services again – so thank you so much.

 

 

Kate Barnes, Commercial Manager
Willis Towers Watson

CRF Institute/Britains Top Employers

Our visit from Alison was an eye-opener. We thought that we knew what we were doing but every single team member learned something new. We learned how to use our equipment properly, we learned how to sit properly and we have all made adjustments to how we work since her visit. Everyone in the team has given feedback since that they are more comfortable in their daily work, and one person who has been in pain for months has changed her position and is now pain-free. Alison is friendly, easy to work with and great value for money. As manager, I thought that I would have to invest in a lot of new equipment but the reality is simply that we weren’t using what we had properly. I would definitely use Alison again and will write a workstation assessment into our on-boarding process for any new employees joining our team.

Eleanor Nickerson, Manager CRF Institute/Britains Top Employers

OTAL Ltd

An Ergonomic Assessment provided by Healthywork was well worth the money. The chair has been set up correctly, and is now more comfortable for the user and we have purchased the desktop equipment they suggested and this along with correct layout and improved positioning has really helped towards resolving the discomfort experienced.

Linda Marston Human Resource Manager OTAL Limited - HO Birmingham Innovative solutions to and from West Africa

ARK Schools

Ergonomic Assessments at ARK in London and at one of the Academies in Elephant and Castle, South london, assessing the ergonomic needs of teachers.

ARK Schools, based in Central london

HEFCE

We all enjoyed our recent training update, it was really useful and informative. I have completed 2 ergonomic assessments since the training and I found it really helped.

(Ergonomic Training delivered, 2012)

Judith Fowler, Assistant Facilities Manager, HEFCE