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What Is Ergonomics And Why Is It Important?


5 Proven Benefits of Ergonomics in the Workplace

Is ergonomics worth the investment? Learn the benefits of ergonomics in the workplace, backed by 250 case studies.

Are you looking to reduce worker’s compensation and health care costs for your company?

Is improving productivity one of your company’s core business objectives this year? How about improving product quality?

If this is the case, then the development or enhancement of the ergonomics process in your company’s workplace should be at the top of your to-do list.

Nonetheless, leading companies incorporate ergonomics extensively into all their activities. And, when you look at the benefits of a successful ergonomics operation, it’s no wonder it provides great benefits for the employees.

The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries has analyzed 250 case studies on ergonomics to expose the effect of ergonomics on business objectives such as cost savings, efficiency and product quality.

Benefits of a Workplace Ergonomics Process

Here are five of the proven benefits of a rigorous organizational ergonomics framework endorsed by the Washington State DLI report:

1. Ergonomics reduces costs.

You can avoid expensive MSDs by consistently reducing the ergonomic risk factors. It represents an opportunity for significant cost savings with about $1 out of every $3 in workers ‘ compensation expenses related to MSDs. Also, do not forget that the direct cost of an injury can be up to twenty times that of indirect costs.

  • 59% average reduction of Musculoskeletal Disorders
  • 65% average reduction in the incidence rate
  • 75% reduction in lost workdays
  • 53% reduction in restricted days
  • 68% reduction in worker’s compensation costs
  • 39% reduction in cost per claim
  • 43% decrease in labor costs

2. Ergonomics improves productivity.

The best ergonomic approaches are often intended to improve efficiency. The workstation becomes more efficient by designing a job to allow good posture, less exertion, fewer motions and better heights and reaches.

  • 25% increase in productivity

3. Ergonomics improves quality.

Poor ergonomics leads to frustrated and tired workers who do not perform their best job. When the task of the job is too physically taxing the worker, they may not perform their job as they have been trained. For example, an employee might not be able to fasten a screw tight enough due to a high force requirement that could create a problem with product quality.

  • 67% average reduction in scrap/errors

4. Ergonomics improves employee engagement.

Employees notice when the firm makes every effort to ensure their health and safety. If an employee does not feel exhaustion and frustration during their working day, turnover can be minimized, absenteeism decreased, productivity improved and employee engagement increased.

  • 48% average reduction in employee turnover
  • 58% average reduction in employee absenteeism

5. Ergonomics creates a better safety culture.

Ergonomics reveals the core value of your firm’s contribution to safety and health. The cumulative effect of the past four ergonomics benefits is a stronger safety culture for your business. Healthy workers are your most valuable asset; developing and promoting your company’s safety and health culture will boost your organization’s human performance.

Workplace Ergonomics – Is it worth the cost?

So is an ergonomics process worth the cost? Yes, absolutely! Ergonomics is not just good for your business, it’s great for your people. As health & safety professionals, to get buy-in for the process, we need to be able to demonstrate the value of ergonomics.

Good managers consider the following when making decisions:

  • Will this increase our revenues?
  • Will this decrease our costs?
  • Is this the right thing to do?

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