Advanced Concept Design, Fall 2020


Ergonomic Drill Attachment Ecosystem for Tilers


Working for more that one collective hour during the day with arms raised above shoulder height poses increased tendonitis risks. Overworked shoulder and elbow tendons become inflamed and cause long term muscle injuries.  With a sponge attachment for the drill, tiler can clean grout from higher walls comfortably. Another benefit is that the tiler no longer needs to bend over to clean the sponge. Using the long handle, he can dunk the sponge into a bucket of water, squeeze the extra water out against a surface and carry on his work.  

Client Bovatin, Dutch tilers' union, challenged us to design an ergonomic tool for tilers. In observing tilers and mapping their workflow, I noticed they work a considerable amount with arms raised above their head. Ergonomic research suggests significant repetitive stress injuries in this work position.  
To understand the cultural context of tiling, we created culture-based personas for each era of tiler. Synthesizing these findings with the client's wishes, I formulated design vision that reflects the priorities of the stakeholders.