Why Is Ergonomics Important for Product Design?
Nowadays, ergonomics is an important part of any workplace. This is a study that has been taking place more and more in job environments. Many companies understand that this science can make the difference in a job well done. But do you know what ergonomics implied? And why is it so important? Keep reading to find out more about this study!
What is ergonomics?
To give you a simple definition, ergonomics is the study of the interaction between people and objects or tools that they use every day. Even when normally applied to workplaces, ergonomics can be used for any tool, including those at home. People dedicated to this study understand the importance of good design because everything starts there to make them adequate for users.
Few people realized how their environments could affect their physical and mental health. From the chair where they sit to the desk’s form and even the posture when typing is a huge part of ergonomics. But this study can improve any workplace, even the most complicated and dangerous of all. The main goal of ergonomics is to give people an environment that allows them to increase their productivity.
Designers are trying to give products and tools that are visually pleasing that fulfill an excellent aesthetic and help the user prevent illness associated with bad tools and environments. To achieve this, they need to check the big three areas of ergonomics, check them out!
This is about the physical activities that every person engage into. The important part is to study the anatomical, anthropometric, physiological and biomechanical characteristics of these activities. This includes postures, manual handling, movements, physical disorders, especially for persons with disabilities, and more important space where the workload is done.
Here ergonomists, who are the professionals of this area, study the mental processes that occur with different activities; these processes are about perception, cognition, memory, reasoning, and emotion. This includes the mental pressure of the workload, making decisions, the interaction between digital devices and humans, attitudes, stress, motivation, pleasure in what you do, and cultural differences.
Here is all about the organizational structure more than physical space, including policies and social interactions. The important aspects of this ergonomics are communication, management, human resources, working hours, teamwork, and more than anything about the organizational culture.
As you can see, ergonomics is a vast science, where the main goal will always be the user experience. Check out the importance of this study!
Importance of ergonomics in product design
When a workplace isn’t ergonomic, people can suffer from chronic repetitive stress injuries (RSIs). This can include back, neck, joint pain, vision problems, stress, absenteeism, the decline in productivity, and unhappy environments, among other problems for companies and workers. But even this can happen at home; many parents can suffer from these conditions if the home appliances aren’t ergonomic. Changing small details in the environment can increase productivity, and prevent ergonomic injuries.
When developing a new product or tool, designers can seek ergonomists’ help to increase safety, comfort, and the performance of the new product. This science uses anthropometric data to find the best size, shape, and form of the product or tool; that way, people can use them easier. The characteristics that every design need to have to fulfill the ergonomics aspects are:
- Body size
- Body shape
- Sensory sensitivity
- Mental ability
Having these ergonomics aspects in mind in the early process of designing a new product, changes, and innovative ideas can appear. That way, the product can be something completely new, and the tool that people need. A tool adjusted so the user can do wonderful things, no just finish the task at hand, but also the user can see the difference and even enjoy the workday.
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