Office Ergonomics

This page outlines the University's risk management approach and the resources available for managing ergonomic hazards associated with working at computer workstations.

The University Disability Action Plan accommodates for individuals requiring reasonable adjustment in the workplace. Refer to the plan for further information. The Safety and Wellbeing Team may also assist individuals with a disability by conducting a workplace assessment.

A large number of the University’s workforce spend their working days at computer workstations. Hazards associated with computer workstations include:

  • Prolonged work at a computer in a seated position
  • Inadequate breaks
  • Poor setup
  • Poor posture
  • Repetitive movements
  • Glare and reflections
  • Individual factors such as physical fitness, gender, reaction to stress and coping abilities
  • Psychosocial factors such as job control, work organisation, work pressure, symptoms of stress, quality of management and co-worker support

Any of the above can contribute to developing muscular strain injuries over a period of time.

Risk management

The University continues to place focus on the control of this hazard type through implementation of health and safety plans, programs and resources designed to assist in minimizing incidents and injuries occurring. This includes:

  1. Safety and Wellbeing Strategic Plan Priority – Safety in Job Design
  2. Health and Safety Local Action Plan – Priority focus on office ergonomics
  3. WHS 01 to record identified hazards and risk control measures
  4. WHS 45 integrated into induction processes for new and transferred staff (through WHS 23)
  5. WorkPace software program
  6. Online Office Ergonomics training module
  7. Wellnomics Risk Management program – implemented in medium to high risk workplaces to monitor and control risk levels
  8.  Dragon Naturally Speaking voice recognition software – enables users to speak to their computers and watch their spoken words appear in documents. It reduces the amount of keyboard typing and mouse work required at a computer workstation.
  9. Online hazard/incident reports that trigger early intervention and referral for medical assessment where applicable to minimise injury

Health and Safety Consultants can make recommendations for special chairs/ergonomic equipment and organise trial arrangements prior to purchase to ensure individual needs are met. Any items identified are purchased by the individual's work unit and must be approved by the supervisor/head of unit before the purchase is made. For further information please contact the Health and Safety Consultant in your area.

Please note: The following forms are updated frequently. Please access the forms from this page and do not store a local copy to avoid using outdated forms.