The Work Environment


Lighting at the workstation can be artificial, from windows or, more usually, a combination of both. The amount of light needed to operate a display screen is a little less than for carrying out general paperwork tasks. This means that a compromise has to be reached. Ideally you will have some control over your local lighting, and should be able to achieve a happy medium.

Where the general light level is low it may help for you to have task lighting, for example, a desk lamp. If you do have a desk lamp, try to make sure that it is placed in a way that does not cause a nuisance to people nearby.


It is rarely possible to reach agreement on what is a comfortable working temperature as different people have different preferences. Several factors have a bearing on this including work rate, clothing and individual health.

The company has a general duty to maintain a reasonable working temperature. For further guidance contact the Safety Officer.


Very dry air can cause discomfort, not only to the eyes. Going to the other extreme, excessive humidity can be most uncomfortable. Relative humidity should be maintained at a comfortable level. For further guidance contact the Safety Officer.


Your workstation equipment should not be so loud that you are distracted, or cannot hear a normal conversation. A common cause of noise is from printers - it may be possible to move these further away or to fit acoustic hoods. Seek further guidance from the Safety Officer in such instances.

Reflections and Glare

There are some steps that you can take to reduce glare or reflection on the screen. Where you have window blinds make sure that they are in good working order and use them as required. Remember that lighting conditions will change throughout the day and vary from summer to winter.

It is best for your screen to be positioned at right angles to the window. Where the screen backs on to the window this can result in excessive contrast in your field of vision. Where you have your back to the window this can result in glare from behind you falling upon the screen.

In a well-designed workstation it will be placed in positions that avoid reflections from overhead lights. Sources of light should not be in the direct line of vision of anybody who uses display screen equipment.


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This information is derived from the Health & Safety Manual and Kit
For further information about the Kit, visit The Essential Health and Safety Manual home page
  See also Health & Safety Made Easy
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