Thursday, February 15, 2007

The Aging Workforce - Ergonomic Recommendations

Tips to accomodate an aging workforce ...

"Part 1 explored the potential shortage of American workers in the near future and the benefits of being able to retain mature and experienced employees.
Part 2 defined an aging worker and explored the physical changes that can occur with aging and their impact on work performance.

Part 3 will now take a practical look at specific ergonomic accommodations that can easily and inexpensively ensure the comfort, productivity and safety of an aging workforce.

To accommodate for age-related visual changes:

• Increase area lighting.

• Use task lighting with desk lamps (consider up to a 60% increase in task lighting).

• Reduce Glare. The light source should be perpendicular to the work area/computer screen rather than directly in front of or behind it. Use indirect lighting or ergonomic equipment such as glare-reducing screens on computers.

• Adjust the monitor angle of the computer so that print can be easily read and glare is reduced.

• Increase the size of font in written communications and on the computer screen.

• Reduce visual “clutter” in correspondence and on the monitor screen.

• Have magnifiers or magnifying glasses readily available.

• Clean computer screens regularly and adjust the screen color and contrast so that the print is most legible. Use high resolution monitors. Use larger monitor screens.

• Schedule or encourage regular visits to an eye-care specialist.

• Eye drops and artificial tears can reduce the discomfort of dry eyes and irritations.

• Take frequent breaks when reading, computing and performing work that requires intense visual focus.

• Be particularly aware of neck and shoulder posture if using bifocals."    (Continued via Bella Online)    [Ergonomics Resources]

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