This is not a task chair!

I recently completed an office review for a large non-profit organization on Vancouver Island. It was great that they invited me in to see everyone’s workstation because it meant I could do some proactive work with folks who weren’t reporting concerns. However, there were a handful of workers that were using inappropriate chairs for their computer work. The standard meeting-room style chair with no adjustments just doesn’t cut it for sustained computer work. I am aware that sometimes my visits turn into a shopping list for chairs. That isn’t necessarily because I have a high standard for chairs – it is that many chairs simple don’t fit their user well and don’t have the necessary adjustments to meet their user’s needs. Instead of being able to resolve the issue, I have to rely on management to buy a recommended ergonomic task chair – something I wish they should have done the first time around. I can’t think of what could be more important for a worker’s ongoing safety in the office than a properly adjusted chair and workstation! The number of folks who regularly work in pain because their set-up simply doesn’t encourage them to work safely is surprisingly high. Once the set-up is encouraging the right things, I can then help them address the importance of safe posture and movement habits.

Investing in a good multi-tilt ergonomic task chair is always money well spent. Take the time and effort to investigate a proper ergonomic task chair and don’t rely on the supplier’s recommendation, what looks cool or getting the ‘sale’ item at the local office supply store. I don’t like leaving a workstation assessment knowing that I wasn’t able to create a safe work environment for the user. Having the right equipment allows me to adjust it while I am there and then make behavioural recommendations to keep the worker safe. Now that is a successful ergonomic workstation evaluation!


About Rob Fontaine

Rob works with a wide range of clients providing ergonomic evaluations, safe movement coaching as well as advice on integrating ergonomics into successful safety processes.

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