At several food processors I've visited, ergonomics solutions have helped cut down both the incidence and severity of worker injuries; however, better implementation and follow-through are still needed for these employers and their workers to achieve better results. Specifically, there are four key areas for improvement.
More comprehensive documentation. Many industrial organizations don’t document ergonomic improvements effectively, including equipment changes and recording who works on what tasks and when they were completed. This applies especially to the implementation of safety measures and ergonomics solutions where the burden for documentation cannot rest solely on the shoulders of the engineers and supervisors. For these initiatives to have the impact anticipated, workers need to record the measures taken and actively report any issues, as well as results or production gains achieved.
A healthy ergonomics process includes documentation of job rotation plans and a system where production employees are fully engaged in raising issues and proposing improvements to the safety department. These principles must be ingrained into an organization’s safety culture.