Man holding up a tablet touch screen iPad electronic device

In the modern workplace, you’ll find a wide variety of devices. Gone are the days when we solely relied on a traditional desktop setup with a keyboard, mouse, and monitor, and now employees have more flexibility in their daily work. Touch screen monitors are popular workstation upgrades. They’re simple to use and allow for a more streamlined workflow in many cases. Unfortunately, touch screen monitors can pose challenges for their users. Among them is the risk of repetitive stress injuries (RSIs).

RSIs can be minor, severe, or somewhere in-between, and develop over time. Although seemingly small, RSIs can cost companies in the long run. It’s important to understand the benefits of touch screen monitors, along with the challenges, and what you can do to ensure touch screen users are as safe and comfortable as possible.

The Benefits of Touch Screen Monitors

Compared to traditional desktop setups, in specific environments and roles, touch screen monitors are invaluable. In foodservice and other point of sale (POS) systems, they’re incredibly fast and straightforward to use with a low learning curve. In addition, they’re also convenient for basic data inputting and can remove the need for a keyboard or mouse in a cramped workspace.

Many people prefer touch screen monitors because they can handle additional tasks like using a stylus on the display for graphic design, presentation, and other applications. There’s no denying the convenience of touch screen monitors, but there are a few challenges that companies should consider.

The Challenges of Touch Screen Monitors

The most significant challenges of touch screen monitors come in the way users interact with the devices. In essence, users must tap their fingers on a hard surface to input data, which can cause stress in the hands and fingers over time. Typing on a touch screen requires additional activation force which can lead to an increased risk of an RSI over time. Compare to a premium ergonomic keyboard by Goldtouch, which has a low activation force and fully adjustable design, and the choice is clear.

Touch screen monitors are also rarely set up with ergonomics in mind. In the flat or vertical position, users must bend their hands and wrists into an uncomfortable position. If used for prolonged periods of time, this can lead to fatigue. Finally, touch screen devices must be individually positioned to help keep the user’s shoulders, neck, and wrists in their optimal position.

How to Improve Ergonomics When Using Touch Screen Monitors

Tablet touch screen iPad device on a Goldtouch Laptop/Tablet Stand GTLS-0055 with a Goldtouch Go!2 Wired Mobile Keyboard GTP-0044

So, how do you find a balance between ergonomics and functionality with touch screen monitors? It all starts by individually setting up the workstation as best you can to fit the user. This could mean using monitor arms to put the screen in a comfortable location to reduce any potential strain. In addition, you should connect an ergonomic keyboard and ergonomic mouse to the computer. This gives users the option to switch to ergonomic devices for long tasks. The ergonomic devices should also be carefully positioned according to each user’s needs.

Finally, make sure to listen to your users and adjust their workstations as necessary when problems arise. Creating an open dialogue ensures that employees are safe and comfortable, and keeps the company aware of potential blind spots in the form of RSIs on the rise.

About Goldtouch

Goldtouch specializes in ergonomic devices for the modern office. The company offers an entire range of devices to outfit every workstation to keep employees comfortable while promoting safety and productivity. With a Goldtouch ergonomic keyboard or ergonomic mouse installed at every workstation, users can perform their daily duties with their hands, wrists, and fingers in the correct place for optimal comfort. Goldtouch creates ergonomic devices that are individually adjustable, meaning employees can find their ideal comfort zone no matter what position that is.

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