Success and productivity in the clean-room are driven by many factors: air
flow rates and direction, pressurization,
temperature, humidity. But how many
times is the comfort of the employee
thought of? Successful conditions should
include the ergonomic chair—an important
but often forgotten tool that directly impacts
the productivity of each worker.
Cleanroom facilities are constantly
monitoring contaminants in the
environment. Budget dollars are spent
on the right filtration and cleaning systems.
Employee garments and behaviors are monitored. Processes are followed so that the
cleanroom facility is both successful and
productive. But is the facility aware of
the importance of an ergonomic chair
and how it impacts productivity?
Health and productivity
A report from the N.C. Department of Labor Occupational
Safety and Health Program
shows that almost 50% of workers in the industrial workspace suffer
from back problems. Proper sitting contributes to the
physical well-being of a worker and may add as much as
40 minutes of productivity to each employee’s day. The National
Research Council and the Institute of Medicine estimate that
nearly 1 million individuals in the U.S. lose time from work each
year due to work-related musculoskeletal disorders, with an
associated $45 to $54 billion annual cost.
The evidence is staggering and the solution seems clear.
Having employees sit in the proper chair will not only save money (think lost time and medical expenses) but increase worker
productivity. Yet ergonomic seating is often overlooked and the
most inexpensive chair is chosen.
Doing the math
Let’s break it down. In this example, a facility
needs to purchase 100 chairs for their
cleanroom laboratory. We’ll estimate that
a quality ergonomic chair costs $300 and
an inexpensive, non-ergonomic chair
costs $150. The ergonomic solution will cost
$30,000 and the inexpensive solution will cost
half that, $15,000. Sure seems like
a lot of money to save, doesn’t it?
Remember, looks can be
In 2005, the U.S. Department
of Labor determined that there
were 4. 6 injuries per 100 fulltime
employees in the workplace. 30%
of these injuries are due to low-
back disorders. Injured employees
required an average of 19 therapy
visits ( Worker’s Compensation
Research Institute). A work-related
injury resulted in an average loss
of approximately $38,000 includ-
ing wages, productivity loss, and
medical expenses (National
Safety Council, 2005).
Going back to our ex-
ample—we’ll say that one
employee suffers an MSD
at an average loss of $38,000. If
the facility went with the inex-
pensive chair solution they would have not only spent
$15,000 for the chairs but also an additional $38,000 to
pay for the cost of the work related injury—a total of
$53,000. If the facility would have chosen the ergonomic
solution they could have saved $23,000.
The ergonomic solution saves the most dollars…
and makes the most sense. Not only for the bottom
line but also for the comfort and well-being of the
More information is available at www.bevco.com.
Ergonomic Seating Solution Makes Dollars and Sense
can increase worker
productivity as much
as 40 minutes per day.