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Soundproofing: How shared office spaces deal with workplace noise

It is no secret that excessive workplace noise is bad for productivity. It causes distractions, which negatively impacts employees’ mental health as they struggle to regain their focus. In a shared office space, this can be very aggravating as sometimes, the noise you perceive may not be even related to your own work. Fortunately, noise in a shared office is still manageable through an array of techniques. Here are some of them.

Blocking

This involved putting the mass in between your ears and the source of the noise. For example, isolating a conference room with layered walls allows you to create “quiet areas in the workspace”. Drywall is a great material for blocking out sound. Just make sure to take care of any cracks or seams in the construction to completely bar the entry of noise.

For workers situated right next to each other, you can provide a good pair of headphones they can use. Many BPO seat leasing companies already provide this to their tenants as part of their workstations.

Absorbing

Another method that helps manage workplace noise is absorption. It consists of using sound-absorbing materials to stop noise from bouncing around. These can be implemented subtly. Using rubber flooring or carpets on floors is an inexpensive way to cover a huge area at an affordable cost. You can also look to acoustic panels to use for your walls however, they can be quite expensive.

Ceilings are rather tricky. You can mount panels overhead but this may not be aesthetically pleasing. You can also opt for a DIY solution if you are good with your hands. The materials needed to make a good acoustic panel like insulation and glue can be bought for cheap.

Masking

A third way to stop excessive workplace noise is to simply mask it. In fact, it is often used in conjunction with the former two for maximum effect. Ever wonder why it is so easy to get distracted by someone talking in the same room? That is because the human ear is trained to discern speech. It subconsciously tries to make out what the other party is saying even if it causes distractions.

This is where some noise comes in. Known as white noise, it helps mask out the sound of speech so it does not become too distracting. These can come from the subtle office sounds like the whirring of the air-conditioner. As difficult as it is to work in a noisy office environment, it can be as equally distracting to work in utter silence.

Setting Clear Rules

Ultimately, the best way to deal with excessive workplace noise is to deal with the source directly: the employees and tenants.

Set clear ground rules over the company’s code of conduct. Brief them over the etiquette you expect when working in a shared office space. Set guidelines not only on face-to-face conversations between co-workers but also with phone calls as well.

Technology and techniques alone are not enough to solve the problem of loud and unruly employees. Only a robust company culture where everyone is mindful and follows the guidelines can completely address these. You get more productivity and savings when addressing these problems at its roots than paying for expensive solutions.

To see how a shared office space functions and how it helps your business, feel free to give us a call. Take a tour of our three Manila locations and see first-hand what culture is like in our shared office.

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