Green ergonomics: Designing a sustainable workplace
University of Melbourne
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How do you gain a green star rating for ergonomic design? We learned what’s involved from Rosie O’Halloran, an award-winning Human Factors and Ergonomics practitioner, in her presentation to Central Safety Group on Tuesday 4 April.
She presented a methodology she developed for evaluating and certifying the interior of buildings with a green star rating credit for ergonomic design. Following her success with this at the University of Melbourne, Rosie won the 2022 University Safety Association’s Safety Professional of the Year award.
Rosie said incorporating ergonomics and human factors principles and practice into the interior design of buildings comes down to three fundamental principles, and stakeholder engagement is key to getting it right. The outcome is work spaces that promote physical well-being and perceived environmental comfort.
Rosie explained that, while the green star ergonomics credit rating for interior design requires certification by a Certified Professional Ergonomist, her method offers a verified, quality benchmark that can be used with confidence by all safety personnel.
The rating is awarded by the Green Building Council of Australia for interior design that meets selected ergonomic criteria. It is given in recognition of the substantial health benefits afforded by designing spaces and interfaces that provide optimum user comfort, safety and wellbeing and prevent or limit the risk of illness or injury.
Rosie O’Halloran is a Certified Professional Ergonomist with over 35 years’ experience in the field as a Human Factors and Ergonomics (HFE) practitioner. She is employed in a part-time capacity at the University of Melbourne as well as working privately as an HFE consultant.
Rosie has extensive experience in HFE across a broad range of industries. A focus of her work is designing workplace environments, systems and tasks to match the capabilities, needs and limitations of people, with the goal of maximising health, safety, wellbeing, productivity and satisfaction.