Achieving Acoustic Comfort in the Office – Tips to Follow


Achieving acoustic comfort in the office has been written by Lana Hawkins exclusively for Insanely Clever Marketing. Lana is an Editor at smoothdecorator.com and a regular contributor to the Don’t Call Me Penny interior design blog.

 

Achieving Acoustic Comfort In The Office

As you already know, there are numerous factors that can have either a positive or negative effect on employee productivity.

Plenty of natural light and fresh air are known to boost productivity, while stuffy, poorly-lit, noisy office spaces are real mood killers.

While there are people who need some acoustic stimuli to reach their top performance, there are also those who perform best in peace and quiet.

achieving acoustic comfort

Of course, since there is no way to provide every single one of your employees with a completely soundproof office, you should try to find ways of achieving acoustic comfort in your workplace.

Here are a few top tips to follow if achieving acoustic comfort is your ultimate goal.

An open floor plan

During recent years, open floor plan offices have become an extremely popular concept. However, even though this concept has significant advantages over the dreaded cubicles, the matter of noise pollution is something that’s rarely being discussed.

Open office environments do offer greater flexibility in terms of furniture and equipment placement as there are no – or rather, very little – obstacles but they can get pretty noisy.

achieving acoustic comfort

One way to tackle this problem can be installing the noise reduction ceilings, as well as noise absorbing wall panels.

Additionally, cover your office floors with carpets that will further absorb sound. Furthermore, try locating every piece of equipment that produces a certain sound – like a copy machine, coffee machine, printer, etc. – in a separate, enclosed room.

Finally, add tall furniture or even room dividers to absorb and redirect the noise.

Private offices and meeting rooms

While these two are enclosed environments, they can still be pretty noisy. If the sound insulation is not adequate, having private conversations becomes almost impossible.

Furthermore, if your office is facing a street, traffic noise can make your every workday a true nightmare.

Therefore, make sure to implement a proper sound insulation policy. Additionally insulate your office door – doors are the most common weak spots.

achieving acoustic comfort

Make sure you find out as much as you can about proper environmental noise control in order to be able to create optimal work conditions.

Apply the same solutions to meeting rooms as you did on private offices because those areas can become pretty noisy, especially if you work in a creative environment and have regular brainstorming sessions.

Break rooms

Break rooms are also particularly noisy areas, so don’t forget about them either. While some of the most beautiful workplace designs feature a break area in the middle of the open floor office, this solution is highly-impractical.

The best solution would be to locate the break room as far away from the working area as possible, but if that’s not doable for one reason or the other, don’t forget to insulate it properly – apply the same principles as you did with private offices/meeting rooms.

achieving acoustic comfort

Restrooms

Comfort and privacy should be your top concerns when designing an office restroom. Therefore, forget all about toilet stalls that are not fully enclosed and make sure that the area is properly insulated.

Some people find using a public bathroom uncomfortable as it is, so a restroom with a poor sound insulation can discourage them even further.

This might not sound like a big deal, but no one can completely focus on the task at hand if they are constantly thinking about just how much they need to use the restroom.

Safety first

When insulating the office, you need to make sure that all the materials used meet fire resistance requirements.

Keep in mind that packing foam is not the same material as acoustical foam, even though they share the same name.

achieving acoustic comfort

That’s why you need to make sure to hire reputable experts to take care of this for you, as you can turn your office into a real fire hazard by attempting to this on your own.

The fact of the matter is that you can never hope to eliminate all the noise from the workplace.

However, there are a lot of things you can do, as well as various experts you can contact that can help you reduce the noise in your office space as much as possible.

 

About The Author, Lara Hawkins

Lana Hawkins is an architecture student and the editor-in-chief of Smooth Decorator. She enjoys writing about interior decoration and landscaping. Lana is interested in sustainability and green building, from where she gets most of her inspiration.

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