Design of mobile computer-aided workplaces

Project No. BGIA 1097


completed 12/2008


The ergonomic and other requirements imposed by the German regulation governing visual display units (VDU) workplaces are largely unsuitable for application to mobile computer-aided workplaces. No design recommendations have existed as yet for this form of work, which is now taken for granted in vocational life as a result of technical developments (laptops, pocket PCs, mobile telephones) and the indispensable mobility of a growing number of employees.
Based upon empirical studies and in conjunction with good human engineering practice, design recommendations for various types of mobile computer-based work were therefore to be developed in the form of a BG Information.


Case studies were conducted in the first instance for various types of computer-based mobile work, such as the mobile office and mobile computing in logistics and technical service. In the course of these studies, employees were interviewed regarding their work. The interview guides developed within this project was employed for this purpose. In addition, mental stress and strain experienced by employees was recorded with the aid of a standard questionnaire.
The results of these field studies and human engineering observations from the literature were used in order to produce recommendations for design.
The actual results of the study were made available to the enterprises in which the studies had been conducted.


Based upon questionnaires and inspections of mobile computer-based workplaces, study reports containing design recommendations were drawn up for three companies. The reports concern employees in trade and service companies whose work is primarily mobile in nature; they also concern the use of on-board information and communications technology in vehicles.
A BGI Information concerning the use of on-board information and communications systems at drivers' workplaces was drafted during a project of the expert committee responsible for the organization of the health and safety of workers at work, in liaison with the expert committee responsible for traffic. The BGI is to be published in 2009.
The results concerning "mobile office work" were made available to the VBG, which intends to issue a publication of its own on the subject.

Last Update:

28 Apr 2009


Financed by:
  • Deutsche Gesetzliche Unfallversicherung e. V. (DGUV)
Research institution(s):
  • BGIA - Institut für Arbeitsschutz der Deutschen Gesetzlichen Unfallversicherung
  • BGAG - Institut Arbeit und Gesundheit der Deutschen Gesetzlichen Unfallversicherung
  • Fachausschuss Organisation des betrieblichen Arbeitsschutzes
  • Fachausschuss Verkehr
  • FRAPORT AG (UK Hessen)
  • Präventionsdienst StBG/BBG
  • Fa. OBI

-cross sectoral-

Type of hazard:

Gestaltung von Arbeit und Technik, Psychische Fehlbelastungen, Arbeitsbedingte Gesundheitsgefahren


Bildschirmarbeit, Ergonomie, Informationsverarbeitung

Description, key words:

mobile office, mobile IT, logistics, technical service