Improve Ergonomics to Increase Productivity

When monitoring picking, packing, put-away and cycle counting tasks, tangible metrics are key. You want to know exactly how much each worker is producing: how many units completed, how many scans recorded, etc.

But what about the intangible metrics that often go unseen? HOW your workers are scanning is just as important as WHAT they are scanning. Muscle exertion, center of gravity and range-of-motion are important factors that impact not only your workers’ health and wellness, but also your bottom line.

Why ergonomics in the warehouse matters

According the Bureau of Labor Statics for the Warehouse and Storage sector, there were 5 work-related injuries for every 100 workers in 2016. Workers faced days away from work, work restrictions and/or job transfers due to injuries or accidents on the job. Ultimately, injuries like this cost your company money and hurts worker morale and productivity.

Repetitive motion injuries and risk factors

So what leads to workplace injuries in warehousing? Something to keep an eye out for are musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). OSHA notes a study from 2013 on the ergonomics page on their website which states “MSD cases accounted for 33% of all worker injury and illness cases [in 2013].” MSD disorders include carpal tunnel, tendinitis, rotator cuff injuries and other repetitive motion injuries.

To reduce MSD injuries in the warehouse, avoid these risk factors:

  • Bending, lifting in awkward body postures

  • Repeatedly reaching overhead

  • Performing the same or similar tasks repetitively

Obviously, such tasks can be a normal part of the warehouse work environment and cannot be completely avoided. Luckily, there is a way to make these tasks less strenuous: improve the ergonomics of the scanners and mobile computers you deploy in your warehouse.

Scan and verify three times faster while reducing risk

Most mobile computers or pistol grip scanners require a two-step process for each scan: tilt the scanner down to scan and then tilt the scanner back up again to verify by looking at the screen.

With the TC800 Mobile Computer from Zebra, a two-step process becomes one-step. This is because the scanner is positioned in such a way that you can scan while still looking at the screen. Zebra has found, when compared to other form factors, the TC800 improves productivity in the following ways:

  • Reduce worker motion by 76%

  • Save 1 hour per worker per shift

  • Increase worker productivity by 14%

If these sound like benefits you’re interested in, reach out to AbeTech. We have over 25 years of experience helping companies improve their warehouse processes and productivity. As your trusted advisor, we will build a solution (including hardware, software and support) that fits your unique work environment.

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