17 April 2014
In recent weeks, we have outlined why hiring and involving a certified, properly trained and qualified ergonomist is beneficial to your company. However, this isn’t to say that training staff at your company in ergonomics will not provide a benefit.
Ergonomics has evolved over time. No longer is it an “expert-based” approach, where the ergonomist controls all aspects of the ergonomics program. While such an approach is effective at recognizing risk factors and providing some guidelines for operations, making meaningful changes to improve the work condition and reduce injuries requires a deeper level of understanding. Workplace issues and injuries are multifactored, involving physical, psychosocial and organizational components. An external expert, no matter how qualified, cannot truly understand all of these aspects on their own. Instead, they need to rely on the knowledge and expertise of employees, supervisors and managers at the workplace to provide insights to add to their own technical and scientific expertise. Generally, this type of ergonomics program is titled “Participatory Ergonomics”.