15 Feb 2024

Support at every stage

Women going through the perimenopause could be better supported at work if strategies driven by human factors thinking are introduced. More comfortable environments, flexible schedules, improved communication and cognitive workload management can all play a part in helping female employees during what can be a challenging time of life.

In an article for the upcoming issue of The Ergonomist magazine, Amanda Kirby and Kate Preston outline some of the changes that can be made to systems to help women. They also highlight the importance of male colleagues’ awareness and understanding of the issue and the difficulties women can face.

They said: “Overall, perimenopause is a significant life transition that affects millions of women during their most productive years. Understanding and accommodating the challenges women face during this time isn’t just a matter of workplace equality and diversity but also a business imperative. The cost to the UK economy of sickness absence, and resignations from the workplace by women due to their symptoms, and the lack of support for them, is estimated to be up to £11 billion.

“By applying principles of ergonomics, psychology and systems design, human factors practitioners can significantly aid in creating a supportive and inclusive work environment for perimenopausal women. This not only benefits the women directly affected but also contributes to a more inclusive and productive workplace overall.”

Read the full article about how human factors can help women at work during perimenopause in the next issue of The Ergonomist, due out 1 March.

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