In light of today’s ‘new normal’, there is no denying that many aspects of our lives are changing. One example of this is the way that we work. With many employers now requesting and allowing employees to work from home, home ergonomics has become a hot topic – and rightfully so. More and more, people are beginning to understand the importance and necessity of ergonomics to prevent and mitigate injuries as well as create environments which increase motivation and stimulate creativity.
Why are ergonomics important when working from home?
Ergonomics are an essential factor in any work space. However, as an increasing number of people begin to work remotely, they are now having to consider things that they possibly never thought about before and create work environments which are not only conducive to productivity but comfortable, too.
Comfort can be likened – in the words of novelist and philosopher William Gass – to a ‘lack of awareness.’ In other words, you are not aware you are doing something because you are so comfortable. This is what we should strive towards when setting up a home office. Consider the most comfortable ergonomic chair. Though the average person likely wouldn’t have given it much thought, that chair went through an intensive and rigorous engineering process in order to tick all the right boxes. This is because there is a complex checklist that ergonomic furniture has to pass to be ergonomic-certified.
Five noteworthy benefits of ergonomic offices:
- Increased productivity
- Better job performance
- Improved morale
- Reduced risk of injuries and injury-related costs
- Greater work culture
Ready to create an ergonomically-sound work station? Here are our top tips for making it a reality:
Carefully consider your work space of choice
One of the most important things to assess when setting up a home office that’s geared towards concentration and efficiency is the area you are choosing to work from – ideally, you want to select a space within your home that is quiet enough so you won’t be easily distracted but not totally isolated either.
We also recommend keeping your work space and living areas separate, if possible. This is because our brains tend to associate different spaces with certain tasks, so keeping your home office separate to the place that you sleep or relax can help ensure that your brain associates your work space with work and productivity as opposed to rest and leisure.
Invest in a comfortable office chair
There are some corners in life that may be worth cutting however the office chair you sit on for lengthy periods of time every weekday is not one of them. According to Dale Kennedy, Certified Professional Ergonomist at Ergomax, “Your chair is your foundation. Get that right first and you will be well on your way to helping yourself.”
Your chair greatly impacts the health of your lower back which is why we strongly recommend buying the best chair you can with the money you have. The good news is that All Office stocks a number of ergonomic office chairs to suit a variety of budgets.
Get the lighting right
Building a comfortable office space requires plenty of natural light. Studies show that adults who are exposed to natural light sleep better and that workspaces with natural light experience improved productivity.
A well-lit room that receives natural light and can be additionally brightened with ambient lighting is ideal for a home office setup. To achieve ambient lighting, you can place a desk or floor lamp near to your work space – this will add warmth to your home office as well as some personality and decorative flair.
Ergonomically streamline your office space – as much as possible
While not everyone’s pocket may allow for investing in state-of-the-art office furniture, we do recommend considering cost effective furniture that follows the right ergonomic guidelines with the budget you have.
We’ve mentioned that an ergonomic office chair is a basic essential, but what about your desk? When selecting the perfect office desk, you want to ensure that your desk and chair are synchronised and can work together. Secondly, consider your desk dimensions to make sure you have sufficient space for the tasks you will be performing. If your desk is too narrow, it will affect your eyes because you won’t be able to move your monitor further away.
TIP: We encourage you to speak to one of our helpful team members to get advice on choosing the right chair-and-desk combination to suit your needs.
Add some greenery
Did you know that plants can help increase happiness and reduce stress? In fact, having even a few plants in your home office can increase productivity by as much as 15%. Plants don’t just add a dash of greenery and boost happiness, they help improve air quality too.