Published on March 5th, 2014 | by admin

Are You Sitting Comfortably At Your Workstation?

We recently read that according to the Work Foundation, back pain alone costs the UK economy £7bn a year in work-related absences so the Post Office Shop decided to commission a survey exploring in more detail musculoskeletal and eye related ailments affecting Britain’s workforce.

Alarmingly, what we discovered was that nearly two-thirds of Britain’s office workers (63 per cent) complain of aches and pains at their workstation which, more often than not could often be alleviated with the use of a range of ergonomic solutions.

As the most common ailment that needs addressing, four in ten of those questioned in the survey cited back and neck pain as their main complaint leading to reduced productive working time.

Our poll of 1129 office workers across the UK illustrates that male office working population is particularly vulnerable to musculoskeletal disorders, twice as many men (48 per cent) than women (24 per cent) complain about back and neck ache at their workstation.

More than a fifth of employees also complain of eye strain (21%). We have also found out that less than a third of employees (29 per cent) using Display Screen Equipment (DSE) in their daily lives have received an eye test voucher they are legally entitled to from their employer to address symptoms associated with eye strain which is contrary to regulations outlined by the Health and Safety Executive.

According to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), absenteeism cost an average of £595 per employee last year so the stakes are clearly high to address musculoskeletal and eye related ailments considering that our survey also reveals that almost a third of those questioned are aware of instances when one of their colleagues has been absent from work due to workstation-related ailments (31%).

As well as products such as wrist support, foot support, back support and monitor risers which can be used to alleviate many of the musculoskeletal and eye related ailments revealed in our survey, employees should also remember to adopt the correct workstation posture which is achieved by sitting back into your chair and avoiding a slouching back.

Office workers should also sit approximately an arms length away from the screen and at the correct height for comfortable viewing (eye level). It is also important to arrange the desk and screen to avoid glare, or bright reflections. This is often easiest if the screen is not directly facing windows or bright lights.

Do feel free to share our findings.

ergonomics infographic FINAL VERSION 3 March v2


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