How Important Standing Desks Are to Today’s Companies
Ronald Monte | July 3, 2018
If you were working in an office setting in the 20th century, you’d probably find it difficult to conceive the idea of utilizing a standing desk. After all, people were considered being more physically active back then. Nowadays, the U.S. workplace in the digital age has become synonymous with a heightened sedentary lifestyle, and Apple’s CEO Tim Cook seeks to counter it by making sure every one of his employees has a standing desk. He reiterated this sentiment in a recent interview with the Carlyle Group’s, David Rubenstein on Bloomberg TV and stated that “sitting is the new cancer”. As a result, Cook has made it a policy that every one of his 12,000 employees at the company’s new Apple Park headquarters should have a standing desk as it allows them to move around more while still working at their desks. It also enables them to rotate between periods of sitting and standing, which creates more physical movement than it would have generated from sitting at the same position for several hours at a time.
Battling the Negative Aspects of Sedentarism in the Workplace
Cook’s concerns are one’s that many companies are looking to address as well. In fact it correlates with the recent June 2018 report by the Society for Human Resource Management that mentions that 44% of surveyed HR professionals are either providing or subsidizing the issuing of standing desks to their employees. This has significantly increased from the 13% in 2013 and the report mentions that it is “the fastest growing employee benefit in U.S. workplaces.” Standing is the latest idea in the attempt to curb employees from a sedentary lifestyle at work. After all, the rationale behind this trend is to help people avoid chronic diseases that are associated with excess sitting. It’s good for the employees and it’s good for the company in terms of morale and productivity.
For several years U.S. companies have been trying to tackle this dilemma with furniture such as wiggling chairs and treadmills paired with desks. However, the standing desk has shown the greatest and the most practical promise. It is revolutionizing the way in which companies and start-ups are furnishing their offices. Dr. James Levine of the Mayo Clinic verified that a long-term sedentary lifestyle is highly detrimental to the overall health and well being of the body in his 2011 research study. In addition people spend close to six hours sitting and seven hours sleeping, as well as having a higher likeliness of being sedentary outside of the workplace. This is one of the key reasons why the standing desk is gaining recognition in the modern workplace as it enables the worker to have more movement than they would have otherwise.
Standing Desks Used for Minimizing Chronic Back and Neck Pain
In addition, people with back problems from constant sitting in front of the computer have become great proponents of the up and down features of the standing desk. In fact, it’s reported that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) did a study on how back and neck pain was effected by four plus weeks usage of the sit and stand desk. Their results showed that the participants upper back and neck pain had been drastically reduced by 54% in just four weeks of using the sit and stand desk. This gives companies an opportunity to help their employees to drastically decrease their chronic pain caused by prolonged sitting throughout the main part of the day. For companies this can be extremely crucial for when dealing with employee health and emotional well-being issues as it can greatly impact productivity and morale in the company setting.
Promotion of a Healthy Mind and Proactive Mindset Equals a Positive Work Environment
This leads to our next point that shows that standing desks actually help improve the mood, energy levels, and healthy mindset of the employees at a company. A prolonged sedentary mind is more susceptible to mental health concerns such as depression and anxiety. The study that discusses this mentions behaviors such as excessive TV viewing, Internet use, and reading as being the primary culprits since they are typically conducted in a sitting posture. However, the standing desk offers an opportunity to curb the sedentary aspect of those activities by allowing for more body movement to keep the employees active while working and being less susceptible to falling prey to the negative aspects of sedentarism.
In fact, another study reviewed the energy and mood levels of employees over a seven-week period. This study showed that the use of standing desks had an overall positive experience on the participants as they were reported to have less stress and fatigue than participants who remained seated throughout the workday. In addition, it showed that 87% of the participants reported increased vigor and energy throughout the day. Also, the report showed that when going back to their old sitting desks, a major reversion of all the benefits associated with the standing desk had occurred.
These results were staggering and it shows that the use of the standing desk does have a place in the office environment. In addition, companies that are heavily reliant on digital technology will be especially interested in using the standing desk as the digital age is quickly transforming the way business is being conducted. It is especially prevalent in the hiring processes of HR managers as a way to attract and retain millennial talent who particularly expect companies to create and preserve healthy and positive work environments in their offices as well.
In addition, the way people utilize their workstations in the digital age is transforming quickly as well. It is not just the sit-and-stand features of modern office desks that current and new start-up firms desire. They also want the latest digital technology that can help enhance their productivity and success rates. This is why the use of smart desks is rapidly becoming necessary for firms to operate and compete effectively in the digital age.
The SmartDesk allows the user to utilize a sit and stand function as well as enabling them to seamlessly operate an integrated workstation that provides them with all the tools they need within an arm’s reach. This state of the art workstation by Cemtrex not only helps eliminate chronic aches and pains that are caused from excessive sitting, but it also gives the user a new digital work environment that improves worker productivity and morale.