Ergonomic workstations are a growing trend in many businesses today. While you may assume that ergonomics are primarily a concern for people who spend their entire day in a traditional office setting, this is not necessarily the case! We are seeing ergonomics for non-desk jobs become increasingly commonplace, as people realize that repetitive stress injuries can occur in a wide variety of settings — including pharmacies.
You may not think that your pharmacy requires ergonomic workstations, but before you rule out the possibility, ask yourself and your employees the following questions:
- Is your back hurting at the end of the day?
- Are your feet hurting at the end of the day?
- Do you often bump into things when moving about your workspace?
- Do you notice regular aches and pains in a specific part of your body after work?
If you answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, it may indicate that there is room for improvement in your office ergonomics. Keep reading to learn how you can solve the problem with ergonomic workstations for your pharmacy.
Find Ergonomic Furniture
The first major factor in creating an ergonomic workstation is understanding height. Your furniture needs to be the proper height for your employees.
If your employees are especially tall, they may be hunching over the pharmacy counter or their desks. If they are especially short, they may be craning their necks to stare up at a screen. A hurting back is a clear sign that your furniture is not the correct height.
Finding ergonomic furniture is often a simple matter of understanding the necessary height for a particular build — or providing adjustable options, such as desks that can be raised or lowered.
Improving Pharmacy Workflow
The second major factor in creating an ergonomic workstation is providing enough space. Your pharmacy workflow needs to accommodate movement, such as when a pharmacist stands up to get prescriptions.
There will be obvious signs that your pharmacy workflow his problematic. Are you constantly bumping into each other, when you are looking for things? Do your employees have trouble reaching items on higher shelves?
Regular aches, pains, and bumps can all be signs of poor workflow patterns. You may need a renovation to solve these issues — or simply change where things are being stored and how your workstations are distributed around the pharmacy.
Choosing the Correct Pharmacy Design
Choosing the correct pharmacy design is all about understanding the problems that may arise in a space. Thankfully, these problems are easy to identify in an existing pharmacy (it’s harder to predict them beforehand).
Here’s a helpful exercise: simply write down a list of all the things you hate about where you work — other than your boss. 🙂 Do you bang your knees on the underside of your desk? Run into your coworker on the way to the stockroom? Write it all down.
The team at O’Connell Store Fixtures has used this exact exercise to choose the correct renovations and improve the pharmacy layout for a number of our clients. Our goal is to figure out how you like to work and enable you to do it, with smart pharmacy design and an understanding of ergonomic principles.