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Work organization and ergonomic risk assessment: a study of the impact and role of workday breaks allocation in the automotive industry

Cristiana Ballico

Work organization and ergonomic risk assessment: a study of the impact and role of workday breaks allocation in the automotive industry.

Rel. Luigi Benfratello, Anna D'Ambrosio. Politecnico di Torino, Corso di laurea magistrale in Ingegneria Gestionale (Engineering And Management), 2020


In the last century the Industrial Revolutions brought, in the manufacturing industry, not only new technologies for products and processes but also different systems for the organization of work. The latter is the planning, management and organization of work within an organization in order to reach economic and business development but also to improve productivity, innovation and working conditions. Moreover, new fields of science have been explored bringing also new approaches and methodologies for work risk assessment. In fact, the importance and observation of working conditions has increased considerably leading to the foundation of ergonomics. This new science, introduced in the Second Industrial Revolution, is the assessment of physical and psychological conditions of workers, executed to identify which are the most appropriate characteristics for designing devices and systems for human use. It is conducted to reduce or eliminate the risk of workers occupational diseases (such as Musculo-Skeletal Disorders) caused by the use of inappropriate equipment or task execution not compliant to method. In the last decades, ergonomics has become complementary to work organization in order to improve the design and organization of workstations and and the efficiency of the production plants through a system that allowed a correct organization of work tasks in terms of times and movements. Work organization can be classified according to the remuneration type or to work schedule described in the contract. The former has important implication on the incentive system offered to the worker, hence on the motivation and job satisfaction which are fundamental for the achievement of organizational goals and objectives. The latter is defined by the hours per day and the days per week that an employee is expected to work at his job. In particular, the rest periods are introduced in order to guarantee the physical and mental well‐being of the employer and favour the improvement of occupational health and safety. From the point of view of the company, its impact is positive for the performance and production level but also for the working climate and the image. This is especially important in the case of monotonous work with shift rotation schedule, such as production line of manufacturing industry, in which even small rest breaks acquire a high importance for the worker. Legislation doesn’t impose restrictive limits with regard to the definition of workday breaks and on their allocation. On the contrary, ergonomic standards propose indications and guidelines for the duration and allocation of breaks. The ergonomic methodologies are used to identify and quantify the risk level for each workstation. OCRA Checklist is the methodology proposed in the case of tasks with handling of low loads at high frequency which considers both mechanical and organizational factors. The first are used for the analysis of biomechanical load while the second for the evaluation of work duration and recovery periods given by the number of breaks and their allocation. This methodology, suggested by standards, doesn’t have a direct link with the definition of work time, even if it includes organizational characteristics in the calculation of risk. To overcome that, the Ergo-UAS system has been introduced in the FCA case. Starting from EAWS index for biomechanical load assessment, it is possible to calculate a time allowance which is a percentage value added to the basic time

Relators: Luigi Benfratello, Anna D'Ambrosio
Academic year: 2019/20
Publication type: Electronic
Number of Pages: 210
Additional Information: Tesi secretata. Fulltext non presente
Corso di laurea: Corso di laurea magistrale in Ingegneria Gestionale (Engineering And Management)
Classe di laurea: New organization > Master science > LM-31 - MANAGEMENT ENGINEERING
Aziende collaboratrici: FCA ITALY SPA
URI: http://webthesis.biblio.polito.it/id/eprint/13910
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