Ergonomics matches workplace conditions and job demands to a person’s capabilities, to improve worker safety and productivity. Applying the science of ergonomics can be especially helpful in reducing the risk of musculoskeletal injury (MSI), which is the most common work-related injury in BC.
The BCIT Ergonomics Program consists of a Written Ergonomic Program [PDF], online Ergonomic Self-Assessment tool, workstation assessments conducted by OHS, and consultation on purchasing furniture and equipment. A BCIT Preferred Equipment guide has been developed to assist with selecting equipment and office supplies.
Employees, who experience signs or symptoms of MSI, must report this to their supervisor immediately, and can request a workstation assessment by following these steps:
Step 2: Upon submission of the Ergonomic Self-Assessment form, you and your supervisor will both received a copy of the response of the assessment, including the recommendations.
Step 3: You will receive a follow up survey email two weeks after the Self-Assessment. You will be asked if still experiencing any symptoms or discomforts. Answer “No” if your ergonomic concerns have been resolved and process will be closed.
Step 4: If symptoms persist:
- report to your supervisor, and
- complete the IRIS injury/exposure/illness report, and
- indicate “Yes” in the follow up survey. You will receive an email with link to IRIS Ergonomic Assessment Request form and instructions to request an OHS assessment.
Step 5: Upon receiving the ergonomic assessment request, OHS will arrange an appointment with you directly.
A Musculoskeletal Injuries (MSI) Prevention course is available to all workers on the Employee Learning Hub. Workers requesting an ergonomic assessment must complete this course prior to the assessment.
The BCIT OHS Division has a quick guide to Check Your Posture [PDF].
It is also important that both staff and supervisor recognize Manual Materials Handling (MMH) hazards, follow safe working procedures and implement effective ergonomic interventions that eliminate or minimize the risk and impact of MMH injuries.
BCIT’s Ergonomic Program offers two following quick guides for MMH tasks:
Musculoskeletal injuries (MSI) are an injury or disorder of the muscles, tendons, ligaments, joints, nerves, blood vessels or related soft tissue including a sprain, strain and inflammation, that may be caused or aggravated by work (OHS Regulation section 4.46). These injuries are also known as repetitive motion or repetitive strain injuries (RSIs).
If you experience any MSI signs:
- difficulty moving a particular body part
Or any MSI symptoms:
Report them to your supervisor and first aid by using the staff/student injury report form.