Workstation Setup

Prolonged work at a desk or computer, and poor work station set-up are hazards that, in some circumstances, can aggravate or lead to work-related injuries or diseases, particularly of the neck, back and upper limbs.

The risk of overload of musculo-skeletal structures associated with office workstation use can be effectively managed by setting up your workstation correctly, maintaining a neutral posture and ensuring that you alternate positions periodically. UNSW requires that individuals:

  • complete the online ergonomics training (see above) 
  • review the workstation set up guideline HS705 Guide to your Computer Workstation which provides information about workstation set-up, appropriate work posture and pause exercises
  • complete the workstation self-assessment checklist HS114 Workstation Checklist (click this link and select the category ‘Ergonomics/ Manual Tasks’. Note that completion of this checklist is a requirement of staff induction). 
  • take appropriate Rest Breaks and change position periodically (installation of rest-break reminder software may assist

Following completion of the ‘HS114 Workstation Checklist’, employees should implement actions in consultation with their manager to address any deficiencies. These may include making adjustments to their workstation, posture and work habits and organising basic equipment such as an adjustable task chair, footrest, document holder and headset. If, after completing the above and allowing a reasonable time for their body to adjust to the changes, an individual continues to experience problems or related symptoms the employee’s manager should contact their HSE Coordinator for further advice.


Laptops were designed to use for short periods of time. If you are using a laptop for long periods it is a good idea to:-
  • Place your laptop on an adjustable stand, so you can view the screen at eye level
  • Attach an external keyboard and mouse

Ergonomic equipment

Sit-to-Stand Workstations

Setting up your workstation (video best opened in Chrome or Firefox)