Choosing and creating an ergonomic office setting has gained a lot of importance in the recent past. While ergonomics was not thought of as much, was not all that accessible or was really expensive to implement, its importance is now more keenly felt and appreciated.
Creating an Ergonomic Office Space.
Choosing an ergonomic office setting is also now more affordable and easier to implement with many manufactures selling ergonomic office furniture.
Ergonomics of an office space could start with the office chairs that you use to the way you create the setup by placing equipment and arranging people in a strategic manner.
An ergonomic office chair means a chair that adjusts well to the contours of the body, allows adequate backrest, and position and height in order to be able to work comfortably on an office desk. Arranging the office equipment and finishing ergonomically means that the space is suited to the natural movements of the human body. An ergonomically designed office furniture as well as of the setup avoids stress injuries from typing, bending and can prevent common issues like back problems, tiring of hands from computer keyboards etc.
Office furniture such as office chairs and office desk cannot be finalized without having tried them out. As far as an office chair goes, just trusting the claim of the brand that it is ergonomic is not enough. Many business furniture brands today came the furniture to be economic. However, how much suits you and your employees and the kind of work that needs to be done in the office will all have a bearing on the choice that you make.
Choose an office chair that has an adjustable height, adjustable backrest, adjustable tension in the back support and perhaps even adjustable headrest and hand rests. Using a footrest is a good idea because it improves circulation and reduces back stress.
When working on a desk specially computer, the elbows and the rest should be in a straight line. They should be parallel to the floor. For this the height of the chair and the height of the desktop needs to be properly coordinated.
If need be, you can use the sleep out keyboard under the table so as to lower the height that hands have to be raised. This is possible even with laptops with built-in keyboards by attaching external keyboards to the laptop. Secondly, the screen of the computer should be at eye level or slightly below eye level. Once on this depends upon the coordination between the height of the chair and the height of the table.
If you have a lot of computer work to do, using an L shaped business table is a good idea.
You can put your computer on the L section or the printer and fax that in order to have easy access to it but have ample space for other jobs as well such as paperwork. It is also a good idea to have related equipment close by where you sit. If it is a small business office, you might want to have the printer, fax and telephone on a shelf to the side of the business table or right behind it. You should have easy access to any file cabinets and other documentation if you saw required. Proper wiring should allow you to use small electronics that you need to use such as mobile phones, microphones, video cameras, Bluetooth headsets comfortably.
Easy Sharing of Office Resources
If it is a larger business office space, equipment that is going to be shared jointly by various employees such as printers and faxes should be placed in easily accessible and shareable space. It could be a good idea to use a noise shield for your printers if you find that they create a lot of noise. Usually this used to be the problem with the older dotmatrix printers. However, the new laser printers and faxes hardly create any noise at all.
Ensuring Adequate Lighting In the Office
Another essential element of of space is the lighting.
The kind of lighting that you provide not only has a direct effect on the strain and workload of person but it has a direct connection to the environment of the office.
Adequate and bright lighting has a way of keeping the employees active and upbeat whereas dingy and dismal lighting may create a feeling of lethargy. Allow each desk to have its own liking if required. You can use many lamps to eliminate the desk work and help the eyes adjust from computer screens to underlie paper. You can install miniblinds to let each employee controls the amount of light to match the task at hand and time of the day.
The lighting in an office is an often overlooked aspect. But you must understand that the lighting in an office can be used very effectively to create the kind of atmosphere that you want. You can create a warm comfortable feeling, a cheerful bright environment or an easy-going relaxed environment or 5 rating the kind of lighting equipment that you use.
Making Sure the Ergonomics of Office Furniture are Sound
As mentioned before, many office furniture brands today tout the furniture to be ergonomic. However you cannot really buy office chairs and furniture without trying them out. Make sure that the chair is comfortable enough, offers the right kind of support for the head, back in the hands and that the office desk is of the right side with adequate leg space and storage space if required.
Buying Sturdy and Strong Office Furniture.
Much of the furniture that you will see will be made from lighter particleboard which is not really good for heavy use. Many of the ready to assemble office desks and furniture are made from this kind of board. Particle board is not really wood but compressed from sawdust and other elements of wood using machines.
If you find that real wood office desks and cabinets are too expensive, you may consider buying used office furniture as well. It is not so difficult to find furniture dealers who sell re-conditioned office furniture. It won’t be unusual for you to furnish your entire office using refurbished furniture that has been repaired, repainted and the polished.
It will also not be unusual to find that you can save more than 50% on your office furnishing cost. A quick way to find furniture sources will be to check the Yellow Pages or look in your local newspapers classified ad for individuals selling used furniture. Flea markets, auctions and estate sales may be another source of used furniture items.
Basic Of Designing Office Space
You could be starting a business that has a few employees or it could be just you. Starting a business at home could mean that you do not pay much attention to the office work space and make to with the existing furniture that you have at home.
Starting by working on your bedroom writing desk or your dining room table may seem like a good and a cheap option. However, always remember that the office space and the way you design it is done in case linked to productivity and inspiration to work.
Designing an efficient office space is not just about looking good to the consumer but also about the productivity.
Many small businesses overlook buying furniture for the office or spending money on designing a workspace.
They are of course mostly on a limited budget for the business startup and they feel more inclined to spend more on marketing and advertising expenses and others such as product development leaving them little room and budget for anything else. This should not be done.
If you have limited budget, there are ways to get adequate office furniture and design a working space on a tight financial budget as well. We will talk about how to set up an office space and buy office furniture on a budget later on.
Having a proper working space, with proper office equipment and a good professional working environment, enhances productivity. You probably will not get the same feeling of involvement in your office work if you are working from your bedroom writing desk or from your kitchen table. You will probably feel very much a part of the rest of the household activities if you cannot find a way to seclude yourself in your professional work.
Another thing about having a proper office setup is that you should have everything you need to work close at hand and in a convenient manner. This increases the productivity by making it easier to accomplish your business functions.
There are so many other factors that concern a good working office space. It is not limited to finding comfortable office chairs but is also about making cubicles, having the right equipment nearby, disk space, meeting areas, office lighting, privacy and other things.
The kind of office that you create has a direct impact on the inspiration and involvement of employees.
Since the office is somewhere where you and your employees are going to spend a lot of your waking hours, it should be a place where you feel comfortable and are able to focus.
In order to create high-performance office space, you should figure out which person needs what kind of space and what equipment he needs to be close to in order to perform his function.
If it is a cubicle system you’re looking at, then the various people whose jobs are intertwined with each other should be able to interact and perform teamwork as well. Major the off the offices are looking at a more fluid and flexible office environment rather than a closed office system where you have closed cabins and offices for certain people. This is especially true for small business where the business owner himself is involved in doing several other activities such as marketing, selling, dealing with customers etc.
If your office is also somewhere where your customers are going to visit then you also have to think about the image and the impression your office creates in their mind. You do not want them to see a chaotic office set up not a messy one. You want them to get an impression that everything is being done professionally, quietly and efficiently.
This may mean segregating the real work section from the listing section also that is difficult to achieve with a small business start up budget. So what you need to instead is make sure that you organize the workspace accordingly where your employees can work in harmony without a lot of chaotic activity being present.
In certain businesses like advertising and publishing, there is always a lot of hustle bustle going around the office. This is not something bad and something that the customer actually expects. However, there are always ways of cutting down the noise in your office areas such as by placing noisy printers in a secluded area or covering them with noise Shield.
In a nutshell, when your customers visit your office, they should see organized activity and good energy in your office.
The way that you set up your office which means your furnishings, painting, decoration, interior designing, aesthetics are all going to make an impression on the customer. So you should bear all these points in mind as well and make sure that they reflect the business identity and image.
You should understand that you do not need to do all this yourself.
When it comes to designing and shaping and office space, there is a lot of professional help available.
Depending upon the skill of business that you are starting and how much exposure your office space is going to get, you can choose the service accordingly. If you have a small business and are capable of implementing a few ideas, all you need is a good contractor to be able to do with the job for you.
Setting up an office space at home could simply mean taking up a separate room that is secluded from the rest of the home, putting up a few file cabinets and drawers, setting up a table for printer and fax, having a separate telephone line as well as a good working desk with ample space to get you started off. The importance of a comfortable ergonomic chair for the office cannot be underemphasized.