Osmond Ergonomics eBulletin September 2021

September 15, 2021

This article was originally emailed as issue 142 of our monthly eBulletin at 11:30 on 08/09/2021. You can register here to receive them monthly.

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MONITOR ARMS FOR HOMEWORKERS

Although we have been talking about it for months, it finally seems that employers are formalising their hybrid working plans, even if it is still on a ‘suck it and see’ basis for the foreseeable future. I have already talked and written at length about the big issues so, this month, I thought I would highlight one of those simple ‘I never thought of that’ topics.

Whilst many employers have provided an additional monitor for their home laptop users, far fewer have considered a monitor arm on which to mount it. This cost-effective accessory provides adjustability (height, depth, angle) to improve ergonomics and posture but one of its greatest benefits in a domestic environment is that it creates space. As a commodity, space is usually in short supply for most homeworkers so cantilevering your monitor frees desktop real estate. If you are not using a monitor arm, just look at your screen and think about how much less cluttered your desk would be if the screen stand was not sitting on it!

Don’t forget that they can be retro-fitted too. (Just make sure your monitor has a VESA mount). Our web page shows a handful of straightforward choices or contact us to discuss numerous other options including multi-screen, landscape/portrait or alternative mounting choices.

4Cs WEBINAR

4CsMy most recent ‘big issues’ webinar addressed the four work types: Communication, Collaboration, Contemplation and Concentration. For some reason, attendance was unusually low so perhaps we just didn’t advertise it enough. Feedback from attendees was very favourable and the (40 minute) video is available here immediately or from our Webinars on Demand page within the next couple of days. If you were unable to attend or just hadn’t heard about it, here is an ideal opportunity to see and hear my take on what workplace designers need to be thinking about. As always, I have taken a pragmatic approach to try and take a topic which can be very complicated and explain it as simply as possible. If you have any questions after viewing or want to discuss it further, just get in touch.

CONFERENCE: A NEW WORLD OF WORK

new_wt_imageAs regular readers will know, I am a great fan of the Workplace Trends events and have already mentioned their October conference in the past. With the full speaker list now confirmed, there has been a slight repositioning and, as you may have noticed, a new title. The programme includes a diverse mix of speakers from organisations like Google, Vodafone, Gensler and Tetra Pak. The one thing they have in common is that they are all at the top of their game. You can attend virtually or in person in Central London on Wednesday October 13th. More details and registration here.

CIEHF PUBLICATIONS & EVENTS

CIEHF-logo-square-hi-resWe are proud to be a Corporate Member of the Chartered Institute of Ergonomics & Human Factors. Their output, especially since the outbreak of Covid, has been prodigious and shows no sign of losing pace. For many people, ergonomics has long been associated only with office chairs and car dashboards. To challenge this, a key element of the CIEHF’s current programme is to raise awareness of the countless fields where ergonomics and human factors make key contributions to design, safety, comfort and wellbeing. You can scroll through their free white papers here and find upcoming events here. Better still, follow them on LinkedIn to keep abreast of everything that is happening!

NATIONAL FITNESS DAY

nationalfitnessdayWednesday September 22nd is UK National Fitness Day. Find out more here or search #fitnessday on your favourite social media channel for ideas and inspiration. If you are a gym member, you will probably know about this already but it is also a great opportunity to kick start your fitness campaign if you have been less active. There are events and opportunities all over the country and there is bound to be something to suit your current level of fitness (or unfitness!).

COMING SOON – PRODUCT REVIEW OPPORTUNITES

coming_soonAre you an existing customer? Interested in entering our monthly prize draw by writing a product review? We are finalising our plans for this ongoing campaign. Full details next month, so watch this space!


Product Radar – Xenium Basic Hugger Back

August 17, 2021

This update was originally emailed as a Product Radar posting on 17/08/2021. You can register here to receive them directly by email.

Xenium Basic Hugger Back

 

Introduction

 

Grahl-Xenium-Hugger-1The Xenium Hugger Back chair utilises the highly regarded DuoBack® back rest which reduces direct pressure on the spine by up to 50%. Each back pad is individually mounted on a flexible yet robust bracket which enables them to flex and move with the user, to ensure their back is fully supported throughout the day. The back rest height can be adjusted independently and, when it is raised in height, travels backwards to help accommodate taller users.

Featuring a contoured seat cushion, choice of armrests, seat depth adjustment plus a range of extra optional add-ons, this chair can be configured for a wide range of users and needs.

Features & Benefits 

  • Seat Height & Depth Adjustment 
  • Independently Height Adjustable Back Rest 
  • Multi-Lock Synchronous Action with Weight Tension Adjustment 
  • Two symmetrical backrest pads to reduce pressure on the spine by up to 50%
  • Choice of armrests
  • Seat Tilt and Advanced Knee Tilt are available as options

More Information

 

 


Osmond Ergonomics eBulletin August 2021

August 11, 2021

This article was originally emailed as issue 141 of our monthly eBulletin at 11:30 on 11/08/2021. You can register here to receive them monthly.

Wooden,Game,Strategy,,Businessman,Hand,Stopping,Falling,Wooden,Dominoes,Effect

TIME FOR THE TRIUMPHANT RETURN OF THE DSE ASSESSMENT

In 2019, there was a lot of debate about the relevance (or otherwise) of the DSE Assessment process. It was reasoned that the Display Screen Equipment (DSE) Regulations, last updated in 2002, had been overtaken by agile working patterns and technology, so were no longer fit for purpose. Along with many others, I argued that this was not the case. [more]

HEALTHY WORKPLACE – LATEST PRODUCTS

HW_latest_productsIn last month’s eBulletin, I mentioned how furniture manufacturers have been particularly busy creating new designs and concepts over the last year. To reflect this, we have updated the Workplace section of our website to include a Latest Products page. As employers explore new ways to facilitate interactions in the office, there are many products to consider. We shall be adding stylish and innovative ideas to this list frequently so it is worth checking regularly to see what is new.

CLERKENWELL OPEN

clerkenwell_openThere is a new competitor to the Clerkenwell Design Week event series. Clerkenwell Open takes place on September 9th and 10th. The event offers a specifically curated showroom trail for visitors to attend workshops, seminars and view a variety of furniture showrooms in the Clerkenwell area. I shall be there both days so let me know if you would like to meet up.

CIEHF – CHILDREN’S ERGONOMICS

childrens_ergonomicsHealthy and Happy Home Learning, one of the latest titles from the Chartered Institute of Ergonomics & Human Factors, is a really useful guide for every parent with school-age children. Whilst it may have been inspired by the issues identified in home schooling, it goes much further and addresses the physical, mental and social health of children from a range of perspectives. Topics include posture, movement, mental wellbeing and environmental factors with simple suggestions and valuable links to lots of other publications. Download your own free copy here.

WORKPLACE INSIGHT PODCASTS

workplace_insightIn the age of TikTok, Teams and Zoom, it seems so retro to be listening to a broadcast that is ‘sound only’! However, I have recently rediscovered my love of the podcast, especially now that I am starting to do some driving for work once again. Largely responsible for this renewed enthusiasm is the Workplace Insight series which uses an exquisitely simple format: really knowledgeable, interesting people talking about what they know! New instalments are not added that often but they all stand the test of time. Listen to the pre-Covid ones for some insightful observations as well as the latest recordings about wellbeing and workplace transformation.


Product Radar – Toleo

July 21, 2021

This update was originally emailed as a Product Radar posting on 21/07/2021. You can register here to receive them directly by email.

Toleo chair

Introduction

Mesh-Front-Face

Introducing the Toleo chair by Viasit. This chair aims to increase your natural movement as much as possible whilst sitting. This is achieved by including mobility to the left and right as well as the classic synchronous movement so the chair can fully move and adapt to the users every move.

This promotes mobile sitting, activating the body making users more relaxed and boosting concentration. The contoured backrest and optional headrest enhance the comfort further.

Features & Benefits 

  • Torsion movement for improved dynamic 3D sitting.
  • Full synchronous mechanism with free-flow recline and 4-position lock for extra comfort.
  • Integrated forward tilt, seat depth adjustment and height adjustable backrest to adapt to the user
  • Mesh backrest available for additional ventilation instead of the upholstered back.

More Information

 

 


Osmond Ergonomics eBulletin July 2021

July 14, 2021

This article was originally emailed as issue 140 of our monthly eBulletin at 11:30 on 14/07/2021. You can register here to receive them monthly.

HeaderImage07-2021

AIRCHARGE+ DESK BOOKING

Most organisations are looking at ways to provide an easy desk booking system in a hybrid working environment. Even those who had agile working programmes pre-pandemic are reviewing all their processes to ensure minimum friction. One of my personal highlights of CDW Unlocked (see below) was the discovery of the new Aircharge+, the ‘smart, safe digital marker for today’s workplace’. Combining an online booking page with desk markers, inductive phone (and tablet) charging and a number of additional benefits, this is exceptionally easy to implement and outstanding value. The beneficial pricing makes it suitable for organisations of any size and the exceptional value is because the technology has already been fully developed and tested for a global hospitality chain so the development and support costs have been very low. See the explanatory video here or contact us for further information.

NEW ON ERGONOMICS.CO.UK

web_updateWe have been tracking user behaviour on our primary website since we changed platform last year and we have now made some changes to reflect what we have learned. In addition, our site at homeworker.uk.com has been merged into the primary ergonomics site, creating a ‘Homeworker powered by Osmond Ergonomics’ section. The topline menu still gives a dropdown route to most sections but the new links now provide better direct routes to product groups. Take a look here.

 

CDW UNLOCKED

cdw_unlockedBoth figuratively and actually, this event was, unfortunately, a washout. Attendance was very low. Whether this was because of a lack of marketing, the weather, the pandemic or two Euro semi-final football matches in the same week, we shall probably never know. Suffice to say, I was the only visitor present during half my showroom visits. On the positive side, this meant I could attend showrooms for which I had not pre-booked and, once inside, showroom personnel had plenty of time to talk. It is very clear that the manufacturing industry has been exceptionally busy over the last several months and there are lots of new products and ideas. Whether your post-pandemic office plan is all-in, all-out or hybrid, there is plenty to discuss about how workplace design can support culture, engagement, wellbeing and productivity. For a face-to-face or virtual chat, get in touch or check in to my 4Cs webinar below.

NEW WEBINAR SUBJECTS

Capture (1)We have added three new topics to our forthcoming free webinar programme. Following the success of our Posture Awareness for Homeworkers (which will return later in the year and is still available for in-house commercial delivery), we have added two further Posture Awareness sessions about Laboratory work and Vehicles. In addition, I shall be delivering a variant of the session I did in Clerkenwell at CDW Unlocked: Communication, Collaboration, Concentration & Contemplation – the where and how of Hybrid Working. Find out more and book any or all of these here.

LINKEDIN PROFILE

linkedinIf you are a regular user, you may already know that it is now possible to add a half minute cover story video to your LinkedIn profile page. I have been experimenting with this and my first video (or second, or third, depending when you look!) is now live. I am interested to find out how people respond to this new facility so, if you can spare 30 seconds to watch the video and about the same again to respond to the poll here, I shall be most grateful. Please feel free to comment too!


Product Radar – Kinesis Freestyle2 Convertible Keyboard

July 1, 2021

This update was originally emailed as a Product Radar posting on 1/07/2021. You can register here to receive them directly by email.

Kinesis Freestyle2 Convertible Keyboard

 

Introduction

FS2-PC-Front - new

The Kinesis Freestyle2 Convertible Keyboard allows for maximum flexibility, catering to each individual’s unique needs and to every work environment. The Kinesis Freestyle2 convertible keyboard is a split keyboard that is designed to adapt to the natural posture of your hands, arms and shoulders so the user can work with good posture.


It allows wrists and hands to be in a comfortable and natural typing position to minimise the risk of developing future complaints such as Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI).  The Freestyle2 has a zero degree slope which minimizes the height, effectively creating a negative slope and reducing wrist extension.

Features & Benefits 

  • USB wired ‘plug and play’ connection.
  • Split keyboards are designed to adapt to the natural posture of your hands, arms and shoulders so you can work with good posture. The split and angled design avoids wrist pronation and twisting of the hands which causes the carpal tunnel in the wrist to constrict.
  • Reduces ulnar deviation. Ulnar deviation occurs when the wrist is bent outward in the direction of the little finger which causes the carpal tunnel in the wrist to constrict.
  • Lightweight and portable, ease for transportation and storage.
  • Integrated palm supports reduce stressful bending of the wrists and provide a convenient place to rest your hands when you are not actively typing. Available as an addition.
  • Numeric keypad is available to add on. It supports an ergonomic desktop layout. Ideal for numerical work such as spreadsheets.

More Information

 

 


Product Radar – DXT Ergonomic Mouse 2

June 11, 2021

This update was originally emailed as a Product Radar posting on 11/05/2021. You can register here to receive them directly by email.

DXT Ergonomics Mouse 2

 

Introduction

dxt-precision-wireless-ergonomic-mouse-1395148716

This product is not only one of our bestsellers but it was the world’s first ambidextrous ergo mouse. It is designed to ensure your hand is in a relaxed position and the user’s wrist is neutral. This mouse is a versatile accessory due to its unique pen grip and flexibility to switch between right and left-handed use.

The DXT Ergonomic Mouse 2 is a compact mouse that offers good ergonomics in every working environment. It is the ideal mouse for laptop users or mobile workers. Pair this product with a laptop stand to achieve an ergonomic setup.

Features & Benefits 

  • Wired and wireless versions available.
  • Can be used right- or left-handed (instantly switchable) to adapt to your preference.
  • High precision vertical mouse design, well suited to detailed work.
  • Fits most hand sizes to suit any user.
  • Designed by UK ergonomist/physiotherapist team to provide maximum support.
  • Now with enhanced finish and quality.
  • New zinc base plate to increase weight and stability.
  • Maximum resolution increased. Options are now 500, 1000, 1500 and 2000 dpi.

More Information

 

 


Osmond Ergonomics eBulletin June 2021

June 9, 2021

This article was originally emailed as issue 139 of our monthly eBulletin at 11:30 on 09/06/2021. You can register here to receive them monthly.

HeaderImage06-2021

CDW UNLOCKED

Clerkenwell in London, home to many furniture manufacturers, has been slowly coming back to life as showrooms become available to view by appointment. We come one step closer to normality when CDW Unlocked, a ‘mini Clerkenwell Design Week’, takes place from 6th to 8th July. This will feature open house showrooms throughout the area, accompanied by a variety of events and presentations. Plans are still being finalised so keep an eye on the programme page to see what is happening. I shall be speaking at Frem Group on Tuesday 6th. Follow me on LinkedIn for details as soon as they are finalised.

BAKKER ELKHUIZEN CAMPAIGN

bakkerFollowing the success of their ‘One Year of Homeworking’ campaign in March and April, our friends at Bakker Elkhuizen are about to launch the next phase of their thought leadership campaign. This time it is about Hybrid Working.

As employers explore how to blend the many choices available to their personnel, it is important to take a holistic view that considers culture, wellbeing and productivity as well as use of real estate. For their latest white papers and other resources, watch out for our social media links or explore their online knowledge centre.

HYBRID WORKING – WHAT IS EVERYBODY ELSE DOING?

what_is_everybody_elseOur webinar in May attracted our largest audience ever. It is clear that many organisations are still thinking about how to deploy their workforce and optimise their real estate. The five most common business models appear to be – As before – Turbocharged ABW – Clubhouse – Hub & Spoke – No office. What might you do?

We have been listening to what the global experts are saying and the webinar was my chance to share their insights. If you missed it, you can find the video and PowerPoint presentation (with lots of useful hyperlinks) here.

NATIONAL GROWING FOR WELLBEING WEEK

June-eBulletin (1)After a miserably cold and wet Spring, our garden is suddenly full of new shoots, buds and flowers. Even some of the plants that we thought had been killed by frost have sprung into life!

One enormous personal benefit of homeworking has been seeing the seasons unfold in a way I have never observed (or paid proper attention to) before. I have spoken and written about biophilia many times so I love the whole idea of National Growing for Wellbeing Week. I even find the simple act of looking at plants is uplifting!

HYBRID WORKING – HYPE OR HERE TO STAY?

Hybrid,Working,2021,Sign,In,A,Downtown,City,SettingRegular readers will know how highly I value the Workplace Trends events. They bring together global workplace experts to present and discuss research, experience and expectations for the future of workplace. After a fascinating and inspiring Research Summit in April this year, the next event will be both virtual and in-person in London on October 13th, 2021 (subject, as always, to any government restrictions at the time).

The programme is not yet finalised but I am confident it will deliver yet again. To make sure you are kept informed, register your interest here.


Product Radar – Contour RollerMouse Mobile

May 27, 2021

This update was originally emailed as a Product Radar posting on 27/05/2021. You can register here to receive them directly by email.

 

RollerMouse Mobile

Introduction

Contour12109Introducing the Contour RollerMouse Mobile, a compact version of an ergonomic mouse that combines portability with all the ergonomic benefits that are a part of every RollerMouse device. It relieves strain on the arm that reaches for the mouse by providing everything you need in front of you, leaving you to work comfortably. This RollerMouse promotes a comfortable working posture throughout the working day to reduce the development of muscosketal problems.

Features & Benefits 

  • Small and compact, making it easily portable and storable.
  • Five programmable buttons and shortcut keys that improve efficiency during work.
  • Cursor speed can be changed to adapt to the user.
  • Encourages the user to work in a neutral posture, improving physical wellbeing.
  • Aluminium chassis for increased durability.
  • Supplied with a choice of rubber feet to ensure your keyboard height matches the roller mouse.
  • Can be connected to your computer via cable or USB dongle (plug-and-play) or Bluetooth 4.0 to provide ultimate connectivity.

More Information

 

 


Osmond Ergonomics eBulletin May 2021

May 12, 2021

This article was originally emailed as issue 138 of our monthly eBulletin at 11:30 on 12/05/2021. You can register here to receive them monthly.

Handsome,Young,Man,Working,At,Home,With,A,Laptop,With

ALL IN, ALL OUT OR HYBRID – WHAT’S IT GOING TO BE?

Organisations of all sizes are exploring plans for some form of return to the office (or not!). This is a demanding time for senior managers and, indeed, for many employees but it is also an outstanding opportunity for planners, designers and facilitators. Clearly, there is no simple solution and every organisation, department and individual will have different needs and insights. Reviewing what works best for your culture, activities, technology, location and demographics will inform your decisions but, inevitably, there may be compromises where operational need restricts your choices. If you want people back, how will you design that Magnetic Office to attract them? Do you need less space? How will you fill the space? Are you providing enough support for your colleagues? How will you communicate to a disparate workforce and how will you maintain (or improve) productivity? I don’t pretend to have all the answers but I have been listening to a lot of very knowledgeable, experienced people. During May, I am creating a series of blogs to examine some of the issues and, as mentioned last month, my free webinar on May 19th gives some insights, tips and observations to address the question ‘What is everyone else doing?

VIRTUAL CONFERENCES

Global,Communication,Network,Concept.,Video,Conference.,Telemeeting.,Flash,News.During one week in April, I attended two conferences that demonstrated how effective a virtual format can be when well executed. Most notable at each event was the diversity and global reach of the speaker panel, the topics and the audience. Removing the restriction of a physical location really extends the potential and influence of an event in a dramatic way.

Over three days, the CIEHF Ergonomics & Human Factors Conference covered a broad gamut of human factors issues, from the involvement of HF professionals in guiding the NHS pandemic response to exploring the future of autonomous systems. In a single day, the Workplace Trends Research Summit covered data-driven topics from the 4 Day Working Week to Workplace Design for a Neurodiverse Workplace.  Both were educational, invigorating – and exhausting! Contact me if you would like to chat about either.

MORE PRICE INCREASES

containersWhen I mentioned price rises in February, I expected the topic to occur again but I didn’t expect it to be quite so soon! Four of our manufacturers have now issued their second price list in 2021. Increases are averaging 4-5% on top of the rises already implemented within the last five months.

Post-Brexit administration has contributed to this but global shortages of raw materials have also played a significant part. In addition, container transport costs from the Far East have increased by more than 400%. If you are considering any orders or tenders later this year, I strongly advise contacting us to see how we can help fend off unwanted increases. Simply contact the Customer Service team or your Customer Development Manager.

MENTAL HEALTH

Woman,Feeling,Stressed,Because,Of,The,Coronavirus,Outbreak.,Mental,Health,Mental Health Awareness Week follows on closely from Stress Awareness Month. We all now understand the importance of good mental health. In particular, the last prolonged lockdown has put us all to the test and anecdotal homeworker feedback, alongside numerous studies, have brought this clearly into focus.

As a business, we have always maintained the close connection between mental and physical health and we have created a combination of in-house and partner expertise to provide a holistic framework for this. To discuss how we can help with an enterprise approach to all wellbeing issues, contact the Customer Service team or follow a link on our Partnership Services page.

OUR OWN PLANS FOR THE FUTURE

Office,With,Modern,Devices,And,Digital,Datas,On,Hologram,ScreensDuring May, we shall be returning everyone to the office at least some of the time. Our internal research makes interesting reading. Of those currently homeworking full-time, nobody wants to return to the office permanently! Of the staff (including logistics personnel) who had experienced some musculoskeletal discomfort in the last month, half said it had got better and the remainder said it was about the same. 12.5% felt that their mental health had deteriorated in the last six months.

Obviously, we continue to support those who need more help. Our next trial phase will involve nearly all knowledge workers returning to the office at least one day a week. Thereafter, we shall make changes according to feedback. We are also evolving the environments we provide within the office. Also, please note that our Monthly Outlook briefings for all personnel will move to bimonthly so the office will remain closed until 10am on the third Monday of every other month.


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