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The goal of this blog is to provide useful information on every aspect of workplace health - from wellness and injury prevention through to rehabilitation and recovery at work.

COVID-19: Home Ergonomic assessments + WHS Compliance Checklist

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

COVID-19: Working From Home

COVID-19 has many of us working from home in an effort to exercise social distancing. Did you know working from home can come with its own host of concerns and risks?

The home workspace often reveals a range of environmental and ergonomic practices that can result in fatigue, loss of productivity, injury and stress. 
A number of these risks can often be prevented or minimised through the implementation of appropriate modifications to the workplace environment; correct workstations dynamics; and/or frequent postural changes and education.

Employers have a duty of care to ensure that the health and safety of workers is not put at risk while they are working either in the office or at home. 

Actevate’s Ergonomic Assessments and WHS Compliance Checklist can be used to improve home offices and can be conducted via video conference. These assessments are designed to meet the WHS obligations of all states and territories and to comply with the relevant approved Safe Work Australia Code of Practice. Our consultants are experts in identifying elements of a physical work environment that are potential risks to health and safety.

Unfortunately, most companies focus entirely on the ergonomic aspects of workplace health and safety when conducting these assessments and fail to assess and review the following areas of concern:
The physical work environment, such as workspace, lighting and ventilation
Facilities for workers, including toilets, drinking water, washing and dining areas, change rooms, personal storage and temperature of the work environment
Emergency plans, fire evacuation and emergency alerts

The benefits of engaging Actevate for Risk Assessment Advisory services are: 
Assisting directors and senior manager(s) to demonstrate due diligence in order to meet their PCBU requirements pursuant to Section 5 of the WH&S Act 2011;
Experienced WH&S assessors in the area of injury management and prevention;
Self-directed awareness training specifically designed to improve posture, health & productivity;
Prevention of potential workplace injuries and therefore reduced number of Workers Compensation claims;
Reduced cost of unnecessarily replacing office furniture;
Providing objective evidence of your commitment to workers safety;
Effectively managing your workplace safety risks and delegating responsibilities to workers for the awareness and control of their workplace;
Minimising the risks of incidents and the associated costs; and
Enhancing your organisation’s eligibility for tenders and distinguishing you from your competitors.

Actevate adapts our Risk Assessment Advisory services to the company and their specific needs to maximise the benefit of any intervention. For the specific needs of Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Actevate have proposed a solution as outlined below:

Home Office Risk Assessment

Actevate Home Office Risk Assessment assessments include: 
An qualified Occupational Therapist conducts an assessment at the workers home
Positioning of office furniture, adjusting lighting, computer screens and related equipment
Correction of posture and recommendation of specific pause exercises and stretches matched to the inherent requirements of the job and the body type of the person
Education of staff on the principles of correct work health and safety guidelines pursuant to the Safe Work Australia Code of Practice
Provision of Injury Prevention and WH&S Guidance material
Summary report of findings, Completion of Home Office Risk Assessment checklist recommendations, cost and source of equipment (if appropriate)
WH&S risks identified and Presented following the assessment and prior to development of the report

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