Euro Office was established in Scandinavia in 1992 to develop and manufacture better ergonomic tools for computer users. Today Euro Office is based near the cutting-edge expertise of California’s Silicon Valley. We work closely with professionals in medicine, ergonomics and industrial design to create state-of-the-art products that increase workplace wellness and make life easier for anyone using a computer.
Safety, a Scandinavian cultural heritageThe best way to explain the emphasis on safety in the Scandinavian culture is to consider the car manufacturer Volvo, known for decades to be the safest car in the world. As early as mid-1950s, Volvo was the first to introduce seatbelts, not because a law required this, but because Volvo recognized the valuable safety factor for its customers.
Scandinavia, with one of the highest living standards in the world, was one of the first regions where computer use was wide spread. This means it also was one of the first places to recognize work-related injuries for computer users.
With it strong unions, socialized medicine and a cultural heritage of safety, Scandinavia pioneered a cooperative effort between the medical and the technological communities to research and develop solutions for these injuries.
We pioneered the ergonomic computer mouse developmentIn the 1990s, Euro Office released the first of its kind, roller-based, ergonomic computer mouse, called a “centered pointing device” (CPD). Although early versions focused solely on ergonomic and technological features, they enjoyed great success. Today, companies like Apple, Nokia, Logitech and Ideo have raised design standards, and consumers demand design-oriented, fashionable and functional products. Euro Office brings Scandinavian design to this 21st century level of style and creates unique, desirable ergonomic products with outstanding health benefits.
The methodology recommended by ergonomists around the worldThe CPD methodology may seem new and inventive in some countries, but it’s important to note that it has been used for more than a decade, and is the only design recommended in Scandinavia to prevent mouse arm syndrome injuries. There are more than 650,000 users of this style of computer mouse, and the number increases by about 150,000 each year.
The ergonomic world todayThe great need for better ergonomic tools is increasingly being recognized around the world. When the American Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published its ergonomics standards in November 2000, it recognized the severity and cost of musculoskeletal injuries in the workplace and defined policies to combat them. Australian legislators have required that work sites be ergonomically correct. Canada, similar to the Scandinavia, is very pro-active, and parts of Asia are increasingly adapting ergonomic standards to maximize productivity.
The world is divided between mature and immature ergonomic areasIt was within the environment of growing, global, ergonomic awareness that Euro Office recognized computer equipment was being redesigned into easier and better tools for the user — everything except the mouse. Monitors, keyboards, desks and chairs had changed, while the mouse looked the same and was used the same way as it was 20 years ago.
One reason the mouse had been overlooked is that injuries to users can take a long time to materialize. Although these long-term injuries can be more severe, it is still hard to persuade a healthy person to be proactive when it comes to computer mouse use, despite research and statistics that show the long-term risks.
Mature ergonomic areas are countries with higher awareness and stronger legislative requirements. Here, the understanding and knowledge of ergonomics among employers and employees creates an environment where people identify and improve work-related situations that may cause short or long-term injuries. In less mature areas, few realize the human and financial gain that results from investing in ergonomic solutions. Fifteen years of research and millions of work stations should be proof of its efficiency; however, where the knowledge is not shared or taught, it’s not an issue for consideration.