Case Study
Workplace design and subsidy to secure employment for a production assistant with vertebral spine disorder and walking impairment


The company industrially produces picture frames and frames for picture frames.

Disability and functional limitation of the employee:

The man has a back problem and is severely disabled. His gait is slowed and uncertain, so he has already crashed a few times. He also has problems lifting and carrying - even with light weights and must take more frequent breaks because of rapid exhaustion.


The man works partly in the warehouse and mostly as a production helper. Workplace and work duties The man works together with a colleague in the sawmill in the production area. The colleague processes the orders in large numbers so that the other production areas are supplied with sufficient material for further processing. The employee with severe disabilities processes the orders accordingly with smaller quantities and can therefore react flexibly to the processing of orders to delivery requests. However, this work requires a certain amount of physical flexibility. Due to his physical limitations, the employee is not able to carry out all necessary work steps independently. For the removal of the wooden strips from the warehouse and onward transport, he relies on the help of a colleague who does this on demand for him. Furthermore, the machines required by him can only be operated while standing, which causes him problems due to his disability. In connection with the construction of the new production hall, the employee's work area should also be equipped in a disability-friendly manner. A magazine is to be used on the double miter saw, so that the employee is always supplied with a sufficient number of workpieces and is not dependent on the immediate assistance of the colleague. In addition, the use of a CNC-controlled saw with bar feeder is planned. This solution also makes it possible to sit on the saw and make the work easier for the employee. For the further transport of the strips, a mobile round shelf is purchased. In addition, tray tables are arranged on the miter saws on which storage bins for the sawed picture frame strips can be parked or provided so that the employee does not have to bend down. In addition, he needs a padded working high chair with forearm supports.

Assistive devices used:

work and office chairs storage and supply systems tools for fixing and positioning of workpieces and tools (storage boxes) Hand-held industrial transport equipment

Work organisation:

After only a few hours of work, the man feels exhausted and has to take breaks. His movement is slowed down and therefore his work performance is reduced. He himself assesses his work performance by more than 30 percent less than normal performance. Furthermore, it is not possible for him to get the moldings from the warehouse. For this he needs the help of a colleague several times a day. The above-described disability-friendly design of the workplace is in the short term not feasible taking into account the planned construction. Consequently, an attempt is made to allow the employee the necessary breaks for recovery.

Keywords and Further Information

Funding and participation:

In order to secure the employee's employment, the employer receives an employment protection allowance and a staff allowance allowance to compensate for the exceptional 12 month load (completion of the planned construction) from the Integration / Inclusion Office. The then necessary tools for disability-friendly design are funded by the Integration or Inclusion Office. The advice was provided by the engineering specialist service for disability-friendly work design of the Integration or Inclusion Office - the so-called Technical Advisory Service.

ICF Items

Reference Number:


Last Update: 11 Nov 2019