The best design of any workstation must demonstrate minimal physical stresses to the employees that may lead to localised fatigue, pain and discomforts to the employees.
To minimise the physical stresses, several design principles can be adopted such as:
i. Re-design or rearrange task to allow employee to sit or to stand whenever necessary for him or her to do so.
· Avoid tasks which require standing in static posture.
· Provide a chair or a stool for sitting on or standing against.
ii. Provide workstation accessories such as but not limited to:
· A cushioned surface to stand on (anti-fatigue floor mat).
· Better soles for shoes.
· Adjustable working surface to accommodate differences in employees’ height.
· Small foot bench. (e.g. grating for foot to rest)
iii. Arrange for task variation so that an employee can perform different tasks that will allow the legs to move and reduce static loading.
iv. Job or employee rotation –
Introduce variability of the task/job so that localised fatigue on certain parts of body is reduced. Monotonous work may induce fatigue to specific parts of the body.
v. Introduce frequent short breaks to recover from fatigue during the work cycle.
vi. Provide proper and sufficient lighting to an employee thatperforms work in standing position. The amount of required lighting varies between general work and close-up work. Postures may be affected if sufficient light intensity is not available for close-up work.
It is recommended that a person who has adequate knowledge on ergonomic principles should do or oversee standing workstation design.
Source: Guidelines On Occupational Safety and Health For Standing At Work