DSE Assessments – Seating Assessments
Our DSE Workstation & Seating Assessments are professionally managed by our independent partner company with a nationwide network of trained and accredited assessors or qualified physiotherapists operating throughout the UK and Ireland.
DSE regulations are covered under EU Law within the Directive No. 90/270/EEC. The directive was introduced to prevent workstation related issues, due to inappropriate equipment or furniture being used. Equally there is a significant benefit to the employer as the management of DSE related issues increases overall staff wellbeing therefore productivity.
Simply put DSE (Display Screen Equipment) refers to any office based or homeworker that uses display screens (Monitors) as a major part of their work obligations.
Workstations and the associated equipment have an impact on your workplace posture and it is not uncommon for workers to experience back pain and upper limb disorders.
“An estimated 9.5 million working days were lost due to Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorder (WRMSD’s), an average of 17 days lost for each case. This represents 40% of all days lost due to work related ill-health in 2014/15.”
If a user follows good practice, posture discipline and taking regular breaks from the routine, then these risks can be significantly reduced. The workstation part of the assessment will cover Screen & Contrast, Keyboard, Desk or Work Surface, Chair, Lighting, Environmental conditions & Software. As most office furniture and associated equipment is standardised and the human body is NOT, assessments are an excellent way of establishing bespoke requirements.
Common issues relating to the workplace can range from incorrect use or knowledge relating to existing equipment to excessive sedentary hours at the workstation. Some issues are simply overcome by adjusting screens, sitting positions or the addition of a document holder or maybe even a vertical mouse, but others are not. An employee of 6’4″ (1.93m) will have issues with seating and desking, as indeed someone of 4’10” (1.47m) will have. Equally an employee on the heavy side needs assessing because whilst many chairs for an example may bear a description of “Heavy Duty” or “Suitable for Larger People” that is simply not enough, it does not mean they are fit for purpose, nor meet the relevant tolerance standards required.
Any expectant mothers and staff with diagnosed disabilities or Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) should be provided with specialist workstation equipment specific for their condition. These needs are identified in a FULL DSE assessment by experienced professionals as they are sometimes beyond the basic assessor skills.
Many assessments that are widely offered tend to be simple tick box exercises or online self-assessments, these have their place, but they are not always providing specific product recommendations, generally due to the lack of awareness of the special requirements or not having access to bespoke product solutions. How many companies with an employee that has a coccyx condition purchase a coccyx cut-out cushion only to find within months that it does not hold its shape or a lumbar back roll that constantly slips down or rides up. Yes, for what we refer to as “Gardeners Backache” these products are excellent but, they are not solutions for chronic conditions.
Many Health & Safety consultants and DSE assessors automatically refer their clients to us to resolve any product issues raised by their internal DSE assessments.
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Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974
DSE Regulations 1992 (Amended 2002)
Work-related Musculoskeletal Disorder (WRMSD’s), Great Britain, 2015
ISO 9241-5 Postural Requirements.
One of our major practitioner clients says:
“They offer an invaluable service by supporting us with the assessment, supply and fitting of specialist seating, desking and ergonomic workstation accessories, often for very specific medical complaints. The feedback that we have gained from our clients has proven that this service helps reduce long term leave by employees, and increases productivity for the company. Due to the success of this partnership, we have subsequently recommended their services to many of our major corporate clients” M.L. Northampton.