The award of the Ergonomie Kompetenz Netzwerk (ergonomics competence network – ECN) is awarded only twice annually. This year, the award in the category "manually operated products" was granted to the hand tool manufacturer Wiha Werkzeuge and its product "speedE® II electric e-screwdriver". The award ceremony took place in late September at the Dornier Museum in Friedrichshafen, Germany.
From all the products of this category that were submitted this year, the jury was most impressed by the concept of the Wiha e-screwdriver. It is not only labour and time saving, but also provides a primarily ergonomically favourable alternative to conventional screwdrivers. Previously, in many application areas, especially in the "electrician trade", there was no alternative tool, such as a battery-operated screwdriver that professionals could resort to ensure both material and voltage protection. However, it is precisely in these areas that hundreds of fastenings are performed daily, which often lead to painful hands, wrists or even discomfort in the entire back-shoulder muscles. The Wiha invention requires less force, ensuring more efficient and ultimately healthier work processes.
This is how the winner works – powered electrically by a battery inside, the speedE® II handles the often very tedious and time-consuming fastening process three times faster than by hand. To prevent material damage during sensitive fastening processes, the material protection stop is actuated when the torque limit of either 0.4 or 1.0 Nm is reached. At this point the user takes over the gentle final fastening of the screw. In addition, the insulated interchangeable slimBit system provides voltage protection up to 1000 V AC.
The basis for this ergonomic accomplishment was already established in the 1990s with the design of the Wiha screwdriver handle concept of the SoftFinish® series. With handle lengths and sizes adjusted to the fastening task, ergonomics were already the central focus of development at the time. After many years, 2018 continued the evolution story with the world's only functional mechanism of the e-screwdriver speedE electric. The new generation speedE II electric has been on the market since 2020.
Peter Lauster, quality engineer at Wiha, was from the outset a driver of the ergonomic design of the fastening tools and remains to this day part of this development process. “Accepting this award for our e-screwdrivers today is a very special occasion to me. It offers professionals increased comfort and ergonomic handling. This proves to me that we were headed in the right direction at the time and that the aspect of hand tool ergonomics is more than ever appreciated today.”
The aims of the ECN include the support of the exchange of experience in the area of ergonomics, to act as the central contact for companies regarding ergonomics questions and projects and to offer support within its network as a competent consultant for practical problems. Located in Friedrichshafen, Germany, near Lake Constance, the ECN is a registered association exclusively and directly offering non-profit services to support science, research and education in combination with the exchange of expertise in the area of ergonomics and occupational sciences. For more information visit