How Sustainable is Ergonomics Anyway?

Ergonomics, like sustainability has the monumentally difficult task of convincing naysayers that it is real and tangible, and although the rapidly changing world around us makes these two ‘buzz words’ more real than ever, trying to convince those that are not affected by it can be almost impossible.

 That being said, this article is not out to prove the existence of the deity of eco-living but rather to ask whether this deity is comfortable in Her ergonomic office chair, working at her height adjustable standing desk.

 Ergonomics has played a huge role in how office employees get their work done, and the office chair is a very accurate representation of this fact. We also know that ergonomic standing desks or height adjustable desks are rising in popularity as well, and this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to ergonomics in the office.

As office work has become more and more necessary in big business, more and more people have to perform repetitive tasks from a desk while in a seated position. This opens up a number of different problems… the most significant of which is back pain. Back pain is definitely on the rise in the workplace, and has been for a number of years… which is definitely, in no small part, related to the rise of repetitive stress-type jobs. In fact, in 2006 alone, back pain and related injuries cost Business over $16 billion USD in lost revenue and absent staff

Ergonomics therefore is paramount if you wish to create any sort of sustainability in your business.


Defining Sustainability.

Sustainability by definition means that something is “Able to be Maintained”

Recent global issues, including the increase in temperature have become synonymous with the whole drive for sustainable living, but if we take the definition literally then we can definitely say that Ergonomics and Sustainability are intrinsically linked.
Ergonomics is the Sustainability of the workers and office employees, after all – and if you can’t provide  the tools and processes to allow them “to be maintained” then you are denying not only the comforts of your employees but the longevity of your business as a whole.

Has ergonomics changed design, form, and function?

Cost And Effectiveness

As anyone could probably guess, providing ergonomic office chairs and standing desks for all of the employees in a business (especially a larger business) would definitely cost some money… and this is where you derive your cost. Ergonomic office chairs are not expensive, but they do tend to cost more than regular office chairs, which is why some business tend to hold back on investing in them.

However, one look at what it would cost your business to have an employee treated for a repetitive stress injury will DEFINITELY change your mind on this subject. It could easily cost you 2 to 3 times as much to treat an injury as it would to prevent one with a simple ergonomic office chair, and therein lies the effectiveness.

Form And Function

When it comes to form and function, ergonomics has definitely played a pivotal role. Whether it be the height adjustable standing desks or ergonomic office chairs, they  definitely go above and beyond to help your employees. Not only will they help your personnel to avoid the dangers of a repetitive stress injury on the job, but they will also prove to be a functional tool for many years to come. Investing in this equipment now will definitely save you money in the long run. Plus, buying high quality chairs like this will usually boost your productivity and morale as well. You would be surprised how big of a difference being comfortable can make to your employees!