Ergonomics is a crucial consideration within the office, particularly for the bodily demanding activity of palletizing.
A poorly designed palletizing course of can result in quite a lot of bodily accidents for workers, together with again ache, slips and falls and even damaged bones.
However palletizing ergonomics is not nearly staff’ bodily security. It will probably even have some shocking advantages for worker psychological well being.
By enhancing the ergonomics of your end-of-line processes, you’ll be able to cut back the variety of days misplaced to employee damage and psychological well being points.
From decreasing stress and anxiousness to creating folks’s jobs extra rewarding, there may be important advantages to palletizing via the lens of ergonomics.
With the proper strategy, you can also make palletizing a useful asset as an alternative of a possible threat.
What’s ergonomics and why is it essential within the office
Ergonomics is the examine of how folks bodily work together with their setting and the way that impacts their effectivity at work. Staff usually spend lengthy hours of their jobs, so slight modifications to their setting could make an enormous distinction to their well being in the long run.
In a job with bodily demanding duties – like end-of-line packaging – ergonomics is significant. It will probably assist cut back the chance of damage and sickness amongst staff.
With a activity like handbook palletizing, there may be an inherent threat of musculoskeletal issues. These are cumulative accidents brought on by the stresses on the physique as the results of repetitively shifting the physique into awkward positions, and lifting heavy prices.
Whenever you prioritize the ergonomics of your palletizing course of and monitor the affect of your modifications over time, you’ll be able to considerably cut back the dangers to employees.
The position of palletizing and packaging ergonomics on employee security
Regardless of the obvious simplicity of palletizing, it may be a surprisingly harmful activity.
When folks do not take ample care, even pallets alone may cause damage. In accordance with one examine, an astounding 30,493 folks have been despatched to the emergency room for accidents involving pallets in properties and retail places, between 2014 and 2028 solely.
These have been consumer-related accidents, in environments the place folks can keep away from interacting with pallets. When your work entails interacting with pallets, you’ll be able to’t keep away from them.
There are varied causes of this hazard together with:
Pallets and their masses may be heavy when stacked. Any instability may cause heavy objects to fall on folks.
Loading and unloading pallets entails stretching and bending to succeed in objects from a number of angles and sides, inflicting folks to place their our bodies into unsafe positions.
- Lifting heavy objects is likely one of the most typical dangers in any job, which is widespread in palletizing.
If you end up designing a palletizing course of, you’ll be able to cut back the hazard to staff by contemplating ergonomics all through.
The dangers related to improper pallet dealing with
Pallet dealing with is a part of the roles [of over 1.3 million people in warehouses and storage environments in the USA alone.
When workers improperly handle pallets, it can lead to a wide variety of injuries.
Back injuries are probably the most common injury. They can occur because of the repetitive motions of palletizing, including lifting, pulling, pushing, and carrying heavy boxes. Back injuries can be mild – such as slight muscle strains – or severe enough to end a person’s working life.
Slips and falls are another common hazard associated with pallet handling. A slippery floor can lead to a serious accident, especially when workers rush between tasks because of a lack of time.
All physical injuries can harm a worker’s mental health. Whether they are forced to take days off work or struggle to complete their job efficiently, the injury can affect how they feel about themselves and their jobs for a long time.
5 surprising benefits of palletizing ergonomics on employee mental health
You might not expect it, but better workplace ergonomics can improve employee mental health.
Here’s how better palletizing ergonomics can affect mental health:
1. Reduced stress and anxiety
Poor ergonomics can lead to fatigue and physical strain for workers, which makes their jobs more stressful. Even if injury doesn’t affect their productivity, these low spirits can.
A focus on palletizing ergonomics can help workers to feel less stressed and anxious.
2. Improved mood and energy levels
Palletizing is a dull and repetitive task. It can become very tiresome for workers, harming their mood at work and reducing their energy and drive to succeed.
An effective solution for improving palletizing ergonomics is to add a palletizing robot. This can lead to improved mood and energy levels, and more motivation to work. We’ve recently presented such an example in our latest case study about Cascade Coffee.
3. Enhanced focus and productivity
When combined with palletizing automation, ergonomics can help employees stay more focused and productive in their work.
By reducing the repetitive motions associated with palletizing, you improve the intellectual stimulation of people’s jobs so they are more likely to engage with their work.
4. Fewer days taken off work
We have spoken before about how robotic automation helps to reduce the 35% of sick days associated with musculoskeletal disorders.
Making your palletizing process more ergonomic also allows you to reduce the workdays lost to injury and decrease employee healthcare costs.
5. Improved job satisfaction and lower turnover
When you make people’s jobs safer and less boring, you also help to increase their job satisfaction.
This improvement also means that people are less likely to leave their jobs, reducing the problems of employee turnover.
How to minimize risk with robotic palletizing solutions
What’s the best way to reduce the ergonomics problems associated with manual palletizing?
While there are many steps you can take, one of the most effective is to remove the task of manual palletizing entirely from the hands of your workers.
By using a good robotic palletizing solution, you can move people to even more rewarding tasks in their job, improve palletizing consistency, and almost eliminate the potential mental health problems caused by manual palletizing.