Ergonomics done right.®
May 3rd, 2011

How is your company going to address the aging workforce?

by Christy Lotz, CPE

Christy LotzA couple of weeks ago, Blake McGowan posted some information on the blog about the aging workforce. This seems to be such a hot topic right now. I was doing a little research for a client who wanted to put together a training class on ergonomics and the aging workforce. I remembered reading an article about how BMW was reacting to their aging workers and found this youtube clip from CBS.  It basically highlights the efforts that BMW took to address this issue.

CBS reports that in Germany (location of BMW), 1/5th of the country will be over the age of 65 within the next 10 years.  In the USA, that population is going to account for 16% by 2020.  BMW actually implemented some pretty minor improvements such as insoles, wood standing surfaces, sit-stand seats, and magnifiers with a relatively low cost (approximately $50,000). These seemingly small changes resulted in a big return, most notably improvements in productivity and quality.

For those of you who cannot access sites like Youtube at work, here is a link to the Harvard Business Review article that the CBS story was based on.  How is your company going to cope with the aging workforce?