A Chair Assessment Model for Organizational Benefit, Safety and Asset Management
Extensive research has been performed on ergonomic chair design and the impact chair design has on seated posture and the musculoskeletal system of office workers. The research has significantly advanced the science of sitting and the design of office ergonomic chairs. BIFMA and ANSI criteria have identified guidelines for manufactures and consumers to better understand the features an office ergonomic chair should possess. There is a gap in the literature, however regarding how to assess the ongoing performance of an ergonomic chair after it is placed into the workplace. Not as it applies to the fit to the end-user, but the quality and competency of the chair to remain in use in the workplace. Once an ergonomic office chair is purchased in the workplace, it often remains in circulation far beyond its acceptable life cycle and warranty. As a result, chairs that are old, worn, outdated and inoperable continue to be used by office workers. These older chairs often present additional ergonomic and safety risk factors exposing employees to unnecessary musculoskeletal stress and strain resulting in injury exposure claims for the employer.
This paper introduces an assessment methodology using predictive analytics to evaluate the quality and competency of an office ergonomic chair over time. Rather than relying solely on an employee’s subjective, biased opinion of chair quality; instead an objective, measurable rating scale is used to determine chair status. The Chair Assessment System (CAS) and tool provides an overall score indicating whether the chair should remain in use, be repaired or removed from circulation in a timely manner.
KeywordsErgonomic task chair Safety Life cycle Predictive analytics Chair rating system
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