DSE Workstation Self-Assessment

Following the completion of training and information on the safe use of display screen equipment (DSE) this self-assessment checklist should be completed by the ‘user’ with assistance from the DSE assessor if necessary. Where the user works regularly at different workstations a separate assessment should be completed.

Risk Factors
Chair

Is the chair in good condition and stable?

Is it a suitable chair or if faulty check whether it is still under guarantee - chairs are mostly guaranteed for 5 years.

Action Needed

Is the seat height adjustable?

Is it a suitable chair or if faulty check whether it is still under guarantee - chairs are mostly guaranteed for 5 years.

Action Needed

Is the back height adjustable and tiltable?

Is it a suitable chair or if faulty check whether it is still under guarantee - chairs are mostly guaranteed for 5 years.

Action Needed

Are the castors suitable for the type of flooring?

Hard castors are suitable for carpet. Soft / rubberised castors or "glides" are recommended for vinyl / hard floors.

Action Needed

Display Screen

Does the screen swivel and tilt?

Is it damaged or unsuitable?

Action Needed

Are the brightness and contrast adjustable?

Adjust them for comfortable viewing – they may need adjusting during the day as ambient lighting conditions change.

Action Needed

Is the display screen image clear and free from flicker?

Contact IT support to see if screen needs some fix or replacement.

Action Needed

Is the display screen clean?

Cleaning materials should be made available e.g. order via normal departmental purchasing route.

Action Needed

Is the screen free from disturbing reflections?

Move the screen to avoid the reflection. Screen the light source e.g. window blinds. Colour schemes with dark text on a light background are less susceptible to reflections.

Action Needed

Keyboard and Mouse

Are keyboard symbols legible?

Replace keyboard.

Action Needed

Is the keyboard free from reflection and glare?

Replace keyboard.

Action Needed

Is the keyboard separate from the screen?

Laptops and notebooks are not recommended for prolonged use – try to use a desktop PC. If laptop or notebook use is
unavoidable, consider a separate mouse/keyboard for the laptop and support for the laptop/screen.

Action Needed

Can the user find a comfortable keying position?

Can the screen be pushed back to make more room for the keyboard, hands and wrists?

Action Needed

Does the user have a good keyboard technique?

Check that the users hands are not bent up or down and that they don’t hit the keys too hard or overstretch their fingers.

Action Needed

Is the mouse or other input device right for the job?

If the user finds their mouse uncomfortable request suitable alternative

Action Needed

Does the mouse work smoothly and at a comfortable speed?

Check that the mouse is clean and if used the mat is suitable

Action Needed

Is the mouse close enough to the user?

Advisable for the mouse to be positioned next to the keyboard and close to the user to avoid over stretching the arm.

Action Needed

Are the user’s wrists and forearms supported?

Ensure user comfortable with the forearm supported on the desk.

Action Needed

Work Surface

Is there adequate space in front of keyboard to rest the wrists when not keying?

Could some items be moved to create more room e.g. printer, system unit, reference material?

Action Needed

Is there adequate space on the work surface to accommodate and allow a flexible arrangement of the equipment?

Would different storage facilities create more room? Flat screens take up far less room than the CRT screens. Is a larger work surface needed?

Action Needed

Is space under the desk adequate?

The space under the desk should be kept clear and not used for storage.

Action Needed

Does the space allow the used for storage user to change position?

The space under the desk should be kept clear and not used for storage.

Action Needed

Is the work surface matt and non reflective?

Should it be replaced with a matt surface?

Action Needed

Is the area free from sharp corners / edges, trailing cables?

Could sharp corners be refashioned or removed? Does the desk have a cable management system that could be used?
Can the cables be better arranged?

Action Needed

Work Environment

Is the noise level acceptable and without excessive distraction in the work area?

Could they be relocated or avoided?

Action Needed

Is the noise at a level that doesn’t interfere with the ability to hear normal speech or effect concentration?

Can the source of the noise be repositioned? Can equipment noise be reduced e.g. by servicing / replacing / insulation? If not, could sound insulating screening / partitions be used

Action Needed

Are the lighting levels suitable?

Ask EM for help with trying alternative bulbs / light fittings

Action Needed

Is the environment free from glare e.g. light shining in the user’s eyes?

Can the user move to avoid the light source? Can the light source be screened e.g., blinds

Action Needed

Apart from unavoidable exceptions e.g., heat waves, are the temperature and humidity levels acceptable?

If dry atmosphere – plants may help, or if severe discomfort a humidifier

Action Needed

Software

Is the software appropriate and easy to use?

Has the user had appropriate training? Is better software available?

Action Needed

Is the software adequate for the job?

Discuss with manager and / or IT helpdesk advice?

Action Needed

Is the system’s speed adequate?

Does the system need upgrading? Ask IT for advice

Action Needed

Posture

Is the head positioned upwards and with the eyes looking forward most of the time?

What are they looking at? Would a document holder help? Does the screen need raising / lowering / moving in front of the user?


Action Needed

Are the shoulders relaxed and not hunched?

Is the seat too low? Are the chair armrests too high?

Action Needed

Are the upper arms held close to the body?

Can the items they are using be moved closer? Is the user holding their hand on the mouse when not using it?

Action Needed

Are frequently used items in easy reach and over stretching to reach them avoided?

Can the items they are using be moved closer? Is the user holding their hand on the mouse when not using it?

Action Needed

Are the forearms and wrists in a neutral position?

Can the user sit with their upper arms relaxed by their sides, and forearms and wrists horizontal?

Action Needed

With the chair at the correct height are the feet supported?

Try a footrest


Action Needed

Is the mouse held comfortably in the correct position and not too tightly?

Is the user holding a mouse shaped for the right hand in their left hand? Is the mouse too small? Could the user try relaxing their grip on the mouse? Is the mouse clean, functioning properly, and on an appropriate surface?

Action Needed

Is the lower back supported?

Is the backrest adjusted so that it supports the curve in the lower back? Are they are leaning forwards to get closer to the screen, or to reach things?

Action Needed

Are they free from uncomfortable pressure on the underside of the thighs?

Is there sufficient padding on the chair? Is the chair too deep? Could the seat pan be tilted downwards slightly?

Action Needed

Work organisation

Does the user take regular breaks from prolonged periods of work e.g. a break or change of activity after an hour or more

Varying work tasks, taking short frequent breaks e.g. to get up and walk about. Ensure lunch breaks are taken (away from the
workstation).

Action Needed

Does the user feel able to cope with the demands of their work?

Has the workload increased? Has the work changed – do they have the appropriate skills / training? Do they have little control over their work / work methods?

Action Needed

Is the viewing distance to the screen acceptable?

Adjust the distance of the screen. A flat screen can be helpful in creating a greater viewing distance.
It may be helpful to alter the text size.

Action Needed

Are they free from any other problems that could be related to their DSE work not covered by the assessment?

Do they need help from Occupational Health?

Action Needed

Sign-Off
DSE User's Signature
Date
Manager’s signature
Date