PSYCH-105 Industrial Psychology

Chapter 11: Work Environment

Unit 1

Unit 2

Unit 3

Unit 4

Appendix

WORK ENVIRONMENT

Work environment comprise of the surroundings in which a worker does his work. By environment is meant physical, mental and social surroundings in which a worker performs his task. It can be broadly classified into 3 types. Industrial psychology attempts to study all the three types of environment as discussed below: – 

1. Physical Environment

It consists of the physical factors prevalent within the factory. It comprises illumination (lighting), ventilation, temperature, humidity, layout of machines, noise, etc.

2. Psychological / Mental Environment

Mental environment is very much concerned with the psychology of workers. It includes Emotional well being of the worker, stress or happiness, motivation, various instincts of the workers like fear, anger etc. Favourable mental environment should be created for the satisfaction of the workers and to boost their morale.

3. Social Environment

His thinking as well as performance is affected by his social environment constituting the groups of persons he is associated with. It includes social grouping, co-workers, his relationship with the management and other people etc.

Good Work Environment

1. Cleanliness

Dirt should be removed daily from all rooms, passage and stair cases. Rats, other pets and insects should be destroyed and they are the worst careers of diseases.

2. Lighting / Illumination

Good lighting can facilitate higher production. The efficiency of light depends on both its quantity and quality. Day light is found to be the best then artificial light. Uneven distribution, excessive brightness, excessive intensity and poor diffusion can result in fatigue and considerable eye damage.

3. Temperature and Ventilation

The employees must be provided tolerable temperature if they are to work efficiently. Their efficiency is bound to suffer if the temperature of the workplace is either too low or too high. Proper ventilation is necessary to ensure the circulations of fresh air and remove conjunction in the plant. If the ventilation arrangement is not provided, the air will become stale and cause headache to the employees. The employees will feel tired and sleepy.

4. Freedom from Noise

Noise may be defined as an unwanted sound in or outside the factory. It is a source of disturbance to the employees and does not allows them to work with concentration. Therefore it is essential to keep noise under control. There are two types of noise namely internal and external. Internal noise is caused by conversation, running of machines, movement of workers, clerks, peons and visitors through corridors and gangways, telephone calls. External noise comes from outsight the factory premises. It enters through doors, windows and ventilators.

5. Dust

When dust enters the factory, it affects the health of the employees adversely. Dust also reduces the life of various machines and equipment. Therefore it is essential to check the entry of dust into the factory premises.

6. Working Space and Seating Arrangement

Adequate space should be provided for workers, materials, tools and equipment for their free and unhindered movement from one machine or process to another. There should also be enough setting arrangement for the workers as prolong standing may lead to discomfort and fatigue. 

Author – Dr. Niyati Garg

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