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4 Ergonomic Tips to Consider for Hybrid Workplaces

16 June 2023

The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed workplace dynamics. Modern-day workplaces have evolved and are continuing to do so. An increasing number of employees with desk jobs are either opting for remote work or choosing a hybrid work model that allows them to be at their homes or office at their convenience.

Fortunately, the improvements in technology have made it possible for employees from anywhere in the world to collaborate and communicate. And recent global events like the pandemic have created a need for organizations and employees to adapt to their latest working model where connectivity has no boundaries.

While the hybrid work model has posed various challenges for both the employers and the employees, it has brought several benefits for both the organizations and the employees. Moreover, if organizations provide ergonomic solutions to all workstations, both at home and for employees who are returning to the office, it can conveniently offset the negative implications of the hybrid working model.

In what follows, we look at a few ergonomic tips that employers need to consider so they can set up an ergonomic workspace for a hybrid workplace. But before we get into the details, let's delve into the significance of ergonomics at workplaces and develop an understanding of the pros and cons of the hybrid work model.

Significance of Ergonomics

If you have a desk job, you'll likely spend at least one-third of your day sitting in front of your screen. And if you're not mindful of your posture while spending long hours at your desk, your body will eventually experience the negative implications of prolonged sitting in awkward positions. While it may initially appear as mild discomfort, over time, your body will show signs such as aches and pains, eventually affecting your quality of life.

And that's why ergonomics is important.

Ergonomics at the workplace ensures that your workplace setup is designed to maximize safety and comfort while you're at work. While ergonomics makes an integral field in all industries, for the scope of this post, we are focusing solely on workplace ergonomics related to desk jobs.

Ergonomics at desk-bound workplaces help prevent discomfort in your body by ensuring that the workplace design supports a neutral body position.



Understanding the Pros and Cons of the Hybrid Work Model

A hybrid work model provides flexibility to the employee to work remotely and from the office, which means that employees often may not be working together at the same time in the same place. Some employees may work remotely, while others may come into the office a few days a week.

You need to know a few pros and cons of the hybrid work model.

Pros

Having a workforce without geographical bounds leads to a wider pool of talent and expertise,

Reduced cost of operations for organizations as there will be a lesser need for large office space and other amenities,

Potential boost in employee productivity that's associated with enhanced workplace satisfaction and

Improved work-life balance for employees.

Cons

Lack of coordination as expected in in-person meetings,

Reduced collaboration among team members and different teams working together,

The need for organizations to make additional investments in equipment to ensure that employees have a functional remote workstation,

Employees may feel they're always working when working remotely, and

Potential for cybersecurity threats.

The Ergonomic Perspective to Hybrid Work Models

When evaluating hybrid work models, it's critical to consider ergonomics as your workforce will split time between the office and home. Therefore, there will be an increased need for ergonomic equipment and appropriate training for the employees to make the most of their ergonomic workstations. However, it remains a challenge for businesses.

4 Ergonomic Tips to Consider for the Hybrid Workplace

If you're an organization offering a hybrid work model to your employees, you need to know about and implement certain strategies that will allow you to keep your workforce healthy. Here are a few ergonomic tips to help you set up a more functional and ergonomic workplace for your workforce.



Choose Your Equipment Wisely

If your business allows employees to work remotely, then you'll likely not survive without a computer. But if you are planning to invest in equipment for your workforce, make sure you choose your equipment wisely.

In a hybrid workplace model, your employees will not need a desktop that stays in the office while employees work from home. A better alternative is a laptop that your employees can carry along and work on regardless of their location. Whether at the office or working remotely, using a laptop will allow them to stay connected so they can better collaborate within their teams and among different teams.

And while investing in mobile equipment like a laptop makes a wise choice, you will still need to provide your employees with productivity tools that can enhance workplace ergonomics. One possible ergonomic tool that will help maximize the efficiency and comfort of hybrid employees is a laptop riser that allows employees to lift the laptop to offer an optimal viewing angle and eye alignment with the screen.

If your organization intends to invest in laptop risers, you can go for fixed laptop risers that can continue to be a part of the workstation regardless of where your employees work from. A better alternative is a portable laptop riser such as the Motorized AlcoveRiser EM7, allowing your employees to quickly elevate their laptops regardless of location. Whether the employees are working at home or in the office, the accessory can help them adjust their viewing angle, making a valuable ergonomic accessory that businesses should consider investing in for a healthier workforce.



Enhance Comfort Levels for Employees

Comfort makes an integral aspect of a productive workstation. If your organization is promoting a hybrid work model, you must help your employees create an ergonomic workspace both in the office and at home.

Make sure you invest in comfortable ergonomic office chairs for employees at the workplace. Moreover, you should also encourage employees to invest in ergonomic chairs for their home-based workstations.

An ideal ergonomic office chair offers features such as adjustable height, depth, and armrest. Moreover, it also provides adequate back support for comfortable sitting along with a solid construct and base so the chair can serve you for years.

If you intend to invest in ergonomic office chairs for your employees or want to encourage them to get one for their home office, get in touch with FlexiSpot, which is home to reliable, ergonomic office chairs and other accessories.

Find out more about reliable, ergonomic office chairs here.



Make Your Employees Feel Connected

One of the potential drawbacks for remote workers is that feeling connected with the team at the office is a challenge. As an organization, you need to ensure that you provide opportunities and appropriate equipment for your employees so they feel more connected with the rest of their team that's either operating from the office or any other geographical location.

Certain docking stations provide universal compatibility, so your organization can choose to invest in them for the employees or encourage employees to use such tools to stay more connected with the people they work with.



Encourage Employees to Make Healthier Lifestyle Choices

Employees can be considered an asset to any organization. Therefore, the organization's responsibility is to encourage employees to make healthier lifestyle choices to stay fit and healthy and be more productive in their workplace.

Organizations need to invest in training programs such as weight management and nutrition programs to help employees make healthier lifestyle choices. Moreover, they should train employees on the significance of proper nutrition, sleep hygiene, and physical activity. It's critical that organizations encourage employees to keep good posture while at work, promote periodical standing, and allow for frequent (non-judgmental) breaks.

Organizations can also provide platforms like gyms within the office space or membership to fitness centers to encourage employees to stay active, whether at work or while working remotely.

Final Words

Regardless of whether employees choose to work remotely or in the office, an organization's responsibility is to ensure that their workstation is ergonomic. However, setting up and maintaining an ergonomic workstation for a hybrid workforce remains a challenge for organizations.

With these tips and tricks, your business can ensure an ergonomic workplace for all your employees by helping them choose the right equipment and accessories.

Get in touch with FlexiSpot to learn more about ergonomic office furniture and accessories that can help your business set up an ergonomic workspace for your hybrid workforce.