Health & Wellbeing of Desk Workers

Peter Clark

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11 Jul 2019

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The health & wellbeing of desk workers is often overlooked. But a poorly designed or arranged workstation could put your staff at risk of discomfort, back or neck pain, and other musculoskeletal disorders.

Get your workstations right to encourage a happy and healthy workforce.

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<div style="clear:both"><a href="https://croner.co.uk/media/1967/health-wellbeing-of-desk-workers-final.pdf"><img src="https://croner.co.uk/media/1966/health-wellbeing-of-desk-workers.jpg" title="Health & Wellbeing of Desk Workers" alt="Correct use of DSE" border="0"></a></div><div>Courtesy of: <a href="https://croner.co.uk/">Croner</a>.</div>

Health & Wellbeing of Desk Workers

Reading the screen

Make sure the words and images on the screen are sharp, in focus, and don’t flicker or move. If the screen isn’t clear, the display screen equipment (DSE) may need adjusting or servicing.

  • Make sure the screen surface is clean
  • Adjust the brightness and contrast controls on the screen to suit the lighting conditions of the room
  • When setting up software, choose text that’s large enough to read easily
  • Make sure the top of the monitor is eye level to avoid head tilting or neck strain

Using a mouse

  • Position the mouse within easy reach to avoid stretching or wrist strain
  • Move the keyboard out of the way when not in use
  • Support the forearm on the desk
  • Don’t grip the mouse too tightly or press the buttons too hard

Using a keyboard

  • Keep wrists straight when typing
  • Leave a space in front of the keyboard for resting hands
  • Type softly
  • Don’t overstretch the fingers

What training should you give?

You must provide information and health & safety training to all desk workers. The right training helps identify risks and encourages safe work practices. When training people, consider explaining:

  • The risks of DSE work
  • The safety measures in place
  • How to adjust furniture
  • How to organise the workstation to avoid awkward or repeat stretching movements
  • How to clean the screen and mouse
  • Who to contact to get support or report problems
  • How to complete a DSE workstation checklist

Are your desks in disarray?

Book a visit from one of our expert health & safety consultants today. They’ll conduct a full audit of your premises, provide simple action points for you to take away, and will revisit at a later date to make sure all DSE safety measures are in place and running smoothly.

About the Author

Peter Clark joined Croner in 2018 as a Senior Health and Safety Consultant advising clients all on matters of health and safety compliance. Peter has over 15 years’ experience as a health and safety practitioner in many varied industry sectors including Manufacturing; Printing; Construction; Agriculture; Retail; Education; and the Care Sector.

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