Imagine your average day in the office. The ambience may consist of the sounds of keyboards and mouse clicks, phones ringing and being answered, as well as team members interacting throughout the office. As teams grow, it’s important to consider sound management solutions to help absorb, block, and cover distracting noises throughout the office to minimize distractions and give your team the opportunity to feel focused and be productive.
There are multiple solutions for companies with varying cultures, sizes, and design layouts. Some of the common solutions include acoustic panels, fabric dividers, wall partitions, and sound masking.
The ABCs of sound management stand for Absorb, Block, and Cover. Using solutions from each category provides offices with pieces that are both functional and can complement the design of the space. Let’s review some examples of each sound management solution as well as the benefits each can have on your office.
Sound-Absorbing Solutions for the Office
Absorbing sound can be achieved through acoustic wall or ceiling panels, various furniture, and even carpeting. Using sound-absorbing solutions helps reduce sound traveling throughout the office and can also be used to bring brand colors into the space.
Colored acoustic wall panels add an artistic touch to the various workspaces throughout the office by designing unique patterns and matching brand colors, while absorbing sound from traveling throughout the rest of the office. Wall panels are great in open collaborative areas as well as main benching workstations.
Acoustic ceiling panels work very similarly in that they absorb sound in the office, however there is more freedom in hanging these throughout an entire space. There are various colors and sizes to provide sound management solutions that will match design preferences and various sizes of hallways and open offices.
Office furniture, such as pods, can also be used to absorb sound. Some pods, such as COVE from Clear Design, are made with materials that have acoustic properties, providing teams with semi-private workspaces that absorb sound from within. Establishing these kinds of flexible workspaces benefit teams with a place to collaborate without distracting others, or work privately without being distracted.
Blocking Sound with Partitions and Dividers
Similarly to acoustic panels, wall partitions can be used to dampen sound and help prevent distractions in the area. One of the added benefits to wall partitions is that there are many styles and designs. Some are stationary and others are designed with flexibility in mind, allowing for both private and open applications.
Fabric workstation dividers are another sound-management solution used to block sound. Fabric dividers provide each team member with just the right amount of privacy they need to focus on solo work and dampen the sounds of keyboards, clicking, and phone calls.
Dedicated spaces for collaborative and solo tasks is another way of managing sound. Having conference rooms, phone booths, and other flexible workspaces gives teams the opportunity to be mindful of others while working on particular tasks.
Cover Up Ambient Noise with Sound Masking
Covering up common office sounds with white noise can help mask them from traveling throughout the office. Sound masking systems can be installed to help cover up recurring noises such as phones ringing, clicking, and conversations.
Sound masking uses speakers installed above the ceiling panels in grid patterns that project soothing white noise throughout the office. The white noise significantly covers sound from traveling throughout the space, allowing for conversations to feel more private and giving all teams the opportunity to work efficiently with less distractions.
Find the Right Solutions for Your Office
When thinking about sound management, there are a few things to consider; there are solutions that fit various office sizes, design preferences, and budgets. Using a combination of solutions is ideal for teams to do focus work or collaborate without distracting others. Being mindful of these factors allows you to create an office space that will be beneficial for all team members to work efficiently throughout the day.
If you are interested in seeing some of our sound management solutions in use, give us a call at 866-238-5111 to schedule a walk through with one of our project consultants!