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Keith Sandford  
#1 Posted : 28 January 2019 21:19:11(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Keith Sandford

Just looking for advice on how often these should be conducted and how? Tick box exercise, visit each individual and ask them personally if any issues, on line question based? Is there an industry preferred method? Thanks in advance for any info.
Roundtuit  
#2 Posted : 29 January 2019 09:04:41(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

Depends upon the size of the business and the number of users.

Personally choose to use a questionnaire approach given to new starters, employees whose role changes (move to office from factory etc.) and changes to personal circumstances or location.

Based on review of the answers either file or follow up with the individual and their line manager.

Blackburn31728  
#3 Posted : 29 January 2019 09:06:17(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Blackburn31728

The user review these every year or if things change for the user in our conpany even for changing desk positions

Dave5705  
#4 Posted : 29 January 2019 09:08:01(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Dave5705

As long as you do it regularly I don't think there is a defined period or method. Use the HSE DSE info INDG36 and L26 to help you.

We have about 30 DSE users. We raise the subject once per year in a whole staff meeting ("How do computers make you feel?" (like throwing them through a window!! is a common response) and on induction (induction includes a few questions about previous history, eye tests, warning about bi-and varifocals etc). We bring it up at a meeting each year and hand out an advice leaflet, chat a little about the main risks (including amount of home use too), and ask if there are any questions or problems with the equipment. Then we give out a questionnaire for each to fill in (using open questions which require a full and frank response, and "have you read the leaflet!") which the staff must fill in, sign and return within a week or we chase them up for it. Most importantly, we read them and take reasonable action on any issues raised, and record that action. We keep them in our staff files (OK with GDPR rules I understand). We only cover those staff who use DSE regularly (more than an hour a week say).

We also send out occasional email prompts... "Do you need help using your computer equipment?","Are you reading this OK?"," Is the light glaring on your screen?",  "Is your chair comfortable and adjusted correctly?" "Do you ever get headaches?" Just to keep in in the mindset. The email asks the user to reply back with any concerns.

Of course, it's important to assess the equipment you issue too (furniture, chairs, lighting as well as the actual computer) and record any significant findings. Also bear in mind pregnant workers. 

Consultation and supervision I would say are the key requirements. Do a DSE safety walk every now and then, and record it and your findings too.

thanks 1 user thanked Dave5705 for this useful post.
JohnW on 29/01/2019(UTC)
A Kurdziel  
#5 Posted : 29 January 2019 10:20:02(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
A Kurdziel

We have hundreds of staff using DSE (we are a University). We use WorkRite to manage the DSE process. Every new starter gets a request to complete an online self-assessment and if anything turns up that is not immediately solvable (eg adjust your chair, take breaks) it is referred to the HSW team who then go over to ask more questions.  We ask that people who are pregnant or who have suffered some injury or illness or have just grown older, redo the self-assessment and this flags up any new issues. The system asks users to redo the self-assessment every two years (and about 70% of people do) and again if it flags up anything it gets sent to the HSW team.  Only about 10% of issues are referred to the HSW team (20 or 30 a year).

Swygart25604  
#6 Posted : 29 January 2019 13:01:03(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Swygart25604

In terms of an actual assessment (and maybe coming out of INDG36), the HSE have their own DSE Workstation Checklist (05/13) that I've always found to be useful. 

Opening this out for wider discussion, in view of the proliferation of mobile devices in the working environment and wider society in general (tiny laptops, tablets, phones etc etc), does this subject not need some readdressing by regulators? 

Apologies if this has previously been covered off in another thread, but it seems to now be a very grey area to me (like properly taxing tech companies.......) insofar as the technology has outpaced the regulatory environment.

Keith Sandford  
#7 Posted : 31 January 2019 06:18:20(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Keith Sandford

Thanks for all the info. The HSE guidance leaflet outlines the following criteria for reviewing employee DSE assessments. DSE assessments need to be reviewed when: ■ major changes are made to the equipment, furniture, work environment or software; ■ users change workstations; ■ the nature of work tasks change considerably; ■ it is thought that the controls in place may be causing other problems. So reviews do not have to be at regular intervals if no changes to the above have taken place? Our organisation has approx 80 DSE users.
Dave5705  
#8 Posted : 31 January 2019 06:39:40(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Dave5705

Originally Posted by: Keith Sandford Go to Quoted Post
Thanks for all the info. The HSE guidance leaflet outlines the following criteria for reviewing employee DSE assessments. DSE assessments need to be reviewed when: ■ major changes are made to the equipment, furniture, work environment or software; ■ users change workstations; ■ the nature of work tasks change considerably; ■ it is thought that the controls in place may be causing other problems. So reviews do not have to be at regular intervals if no changes to the above have taken place? Our organisation has approx 80 DSE users.

Keith, with the greatest of respect how can you prove that you know nothing has changed? People change, they get older, they suffer aging and desease, or they may have now developed a problem caused by poor posture/technique/lighting (eye strain, macular degeneration, fluid on the spine) that they had not noticed the previous time you asked. It's about the individual user as much as the machine.

Surely, a caring employer asking about their employees' experiences is a great way to find out, and of course gives you the option to ask more open and general questions about other aspects of the job (with regards to H&S). Use it as an excuse to talk, it's a win win option to me.

You can't just give a chap a computer and assume everything is OK for the next 20 years because the monitor doesn't break down or he doesn't get a promotion or the offices don't move. Personally I think once per year, with a regular prompt of 'is everything alright?' is reasonable. As you say, they are called 'employee DSE assessments'

thanks 1 user thanked Dave5705 for this useful post.
SNS on 31/01/2019(UTC)
Keith Sandford  
#9 Posted : 31 January 2019 08:07:03(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Keith Sandford

I absolutely do intend to conduct this regularly. I was just surprised it wasn’t part of the criteria within the guidance.
Keith Sandford  
#10 Posted : 31 January 2019 09:18:30(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Keith Sandford

I also have those whom work on multiple workstations as reliefs. As many as ten. Would I expect them to complete a checklist for each station, or a single one covering them all in general? 

Dave5705  
#11 Posted : 31 January 2019 11:05:18(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Dave5705

Originally Posted by: Keith Sandford Go to Quoted Post

I also have those whom work on multiple workstations as reliefs. As many as ten. Would I expect them to complete a checklist for each station, or a single one covering them all in general? 

Perhaps a good way to approach this would to do one RA for the relief worker, identifying that person requires suitable and sufficient training/information to ensure they attend to their ergonomics and specific needs and on the need to report difficulties. Presumably the equipment they are using is usually used by another person and that equipment is therefore covered in their DSE assessment.

nic168  
#12 Posted : 31 January 2019 18:22:29(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
nic168

 Keith, can I suggest you split the DSE assessment into two- one section for the work station and one fo rwh worker. If your workstations are all pretty much the same you can do a generic one and attache a copy to each workstation as a check list.

 Its the workers who tend to vary in their needs and requirements- Dave has already mentioned Illness, age, injury. To that mix I would add changes in technology and  equipment that has the potentail to create new problems down stream. ( Gorilla paw anyone)

On the plus side technology also gives us better peripheral devices and faster recogintion and diagnosesis of potental problem,

Keith Sandford  
#13 Posted : 31 January 2019 18:55:33(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Keith Sandford

Originally Posted by: nic168 Go to Quoted Post
Keith, can I suggest you split the DSE assessment into two- one section for the work station and one fo rwh worker. If your workstations are all pretty much the same you can do a generic one and attache a copy to each workstation as a check list. Its the workers who tend to vary in their needs and requirements- Davehas already mentioned Illness, age, injury. To that mix I would add changes in technologyand equipment that has the potentail to create new problems down stream. ( Gorilla paw anyone) On the plus side technology also gives us better peripheral devices and faster recogintion and diagnosesis of potental problem,
That’s a good idea, thanks. I have just found our new online assessment which I will get them to complete (includes videos) and I will provide a generic checklist for each workstation too. Any ideas as to what info should be on a workstation assessment?
Zyggy  
#14 Posted : 01 February 2019 16:54:09(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Zyggy

There may also be a group of employees where a self-assessment may not be sufficient, i.e. those who have a diagnosed medical condition. In these cases we employed the services of a physiotherapist who would come out & meet the employee at their workstation before giving a detailed assessment & recommendations. The cost was relatively inexpensive & was part of a physio package that we had in place.
nic168  
#15 Posted : 07 February 2019 14:40:03(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
nic168

 hi Keith, as a rule of thumb when you are splitting the assessments in work station and individual i put anything that refers to furniture such as desk and chair if they are generic into the one and any thing that is personal into the second- so questions like "its the chair stable with a 5 or 6 point base" goes on the generic workstation one, but questions like "do you have any discomfort when useing the mouse" go on the personal one. it does rather depend on the type of workstations you have and the locations.

If you look at the HSE one you can see that many of the questions easily fall into one or the other catagory.

DSE assessment forms came up yesterday, I am trying to introduce them to the concept of self assessemnt and setting up your own workstation. Yes many of them still expect a personal 1-2-1 DSE assessment, the others thing it is all just common sense.

 Some people think the forms are too long, I have been explaining that it is difficult to get it right- too short and you will miss something that affects someone - possibly serious. Too long and people don't fill them in.

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