Little else is more disruptive to workplace efficiency than excessive chatter (fire drills notwithstanding).

Your facility is a powerful tool that can significantly contribute to your organization’s success. Attention to relatively inexpensive elements of its design can yield lasting benefits in terms of employee productivity and job satisfaction.

While several environmental factors, including temperature, lighting and air quality are generally recognized to affect workplace performance, research indicates that proper acoustics must also be a top design priority. Noise problems and lack of speech privacy affect employees’ comfort and concentration, increasing error rates, slowing task performance, and reducing morale.

The ‘Quest for Silence’

Too often, workplace noise control and speech privacy strategies aim to make a space as silent as possible. There is an acoustic comfort zone. But as with light, temperature and humidity, it’s not zero.

This ideal acoustic comfort zone is determined by the workplace’s noise floor. That is, the level of continuous sound that characterizes the space. If the noise floor is too high, the environment is irritating and tiring. If it is too low, conversations and noises are easily overheard, affecting speech privacy and concentration.

In open-plan offices, the noise floor is usually so low that conversations are intelligible from up to 50 feet (15.2 meters) away. Noticeable rises and falls in sound over time, and across the workplace, decrease speech privacy and make it even more difficult to ‘block out’ the distractions caused by noise problems.

Achieving Acoustic Comfort®

Sound masking is part of a proactive approach to providing employees with the productive space they need to excel. It is the only acoustic treatment that can maintain the noise floor at a level between 42 and 48 dBA.

The system uses loudspeakers to distribute a comfortable, engineered background sound. Conversation and workplace noise is rendered difficult to hear, reducing distractions and providing speech privacy. Variations in the volume of sound over time and across the space are reduced, so the workplace feels quieter, and movements are less disruptive.

If you’d like to page employees, or even provide music, you can do both through the same set of loudspeakers.

Benefits include

  • Increased speech privacy
  • Reduced noise problems
  • Improved concentration
  • Increased productivity
  • Reduced project costs
  • Increased facility flexibility
  • Simultaneous paging and music
  • Quick return on investment


Acoustic Comfort is a registered trademark of 777388 Ontario Limited