Workplace physical and psychosocial hazards: A systematic review of evidence informed hazard identification tools

Appl Ergon. 2022 Apr:100:103614. doi: 10.1016/j.apergo.2021.103614. Epub 2021 Nov 26.


Prevention of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) requires the identification of physical and psychosocial hazards. This systematic review aimed to identify accessible and validated tools, for the assessment of workplace physical and psychosocial hazards, and consolidate the results into a matrix for use by work health and safety (WHS) professionals. Web of Science, Medline, ProQuest Central, and PsychInfo electronic databases, along with grey literature, were searched (Jan 1990 to July 2020). Studies that included tools with evidence of validity for the identification of physical hazards, psychosocial hazards, or both were included. A total of 83 tools were identified and then reviewed to ensure the tools were accessible. The final matrix included a total of 26 tools (16 physical, 4 psychosocial, and 6 comprehensive [physical and psychosocial]). Evidence on best practice for MSD mitigation supports the need for a comprehensive approach; however, the current review identified limitations in the availability of such tools to support WHS professionals.

Keywords: Ergonomics; Hazards; Musculoskeletal disorders; Risk assessment; Tools.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases* / etiology
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases* / prevention & control
  • Occupational Diseases* / etiology
  • Occupational Diseases* / prevention & control
  • Workplace