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Is Sound Masking Worth the Investment?

Last Updated: March 10, 2021

Sound masking or white noise systems work by adding background audio to an environment to “mask” other sounds. White noise contains a blend of all the audible frequencies distributed equally over the range of the frequency band. Used in an office setting, white noise drowns out distracting background sounds and conversations with amazing results.

If you manage an office, especially one with an open-plan workspace, you might be considering installing a white noise system. But is such a system really worth the investment? How could barely perceptible background audio make that much of a difference? Explore the benefits of white noise to help you decide if you should install a system in your office.

Increase Productivity

While people who work in an open-plan office can tune out many noises and concentrate on the task before them, most people find it nearly impossible to disregard conversations happening around them. Without white noise to drown it out, the human voice is intelligible up to 50 feet away without speaking at a raised volume.

However, with a sound masking system working quietly in the background, conversations held at a reasonable volume level are unintelligible beyond just 15 to 20 feet. This increases the ability to concentrate, improving worker production and focus by 40 percent, according to a study by the Data Management Association.

Reduce Errors

The work your employees complete is only productive if the end results are free from mistakes. Without white noise to drown out conversations and other office distractions, the Data Management Association study reveals that workers make an average of 27 percent more errors, especially when performing data entry tasks. Reducing errors is critical to avoid misunderstandings and wasted time correcting mistakes.

Save on Construction Costs

Work areas that feature sound masking require less insulation, fewer interior walls, less expensive ceiling tiles, and lower partitions. Simpler construction and fewer concerns regarding the acoustical properties of building materials and furniture allow companies to save money on new construction projects simply by installing a white noise system.

Enjoy Tremendous Return on Investment

The potential ROI from implementing white noise is astounding. The cost to install a sound masking solution varies depending on the project size and office conditions, but many businesses experience a 500 percent return on investment resulting from increased worker productivity, reduced errors, and saving opportunities on construction projects.

Keep Information Private

Overheard conversations are a real issue anytime you discuss confidential patient or client information. White noise systems increase speech confidentiality, making it harder to discern conversations beyond closed offices or patient rooms. If you work in healthcare, finance, or another sensitive industry, the added privacy from a white noise system may be critical.

Reduce Employee Stress & Anxiety

Millions of working American adults suffer from an anxiety-related disorder. Even for people without diagnosed anxiety, just about everyone experiences occasional fear, worry, apprehension, and jittery nerves. Working in a noisy, distracting, high-pressure job only exacerbates these symptoms. From chatting coworkers to ringing phones to the ticking clock on the wall, audible office chaos is enough to cause even the most laidback worker to feel anxious.

The consistent, calming sound that comes from a white noise system gives stressed employees something to focus on while working. This creates an audio comfort zone to help promote relaxation and more productive work.

Improve Employee Satisfaction

The biggest reasons to employ an open-plan office are to make employees feel as though they are part of a team, increase collaboration, and reduce worker isolation. In theory, these improvements to the work environment should improve employee satisfaction, but distracting noises traveling around an open office can offset some of these benefits. Fortunately, you can reclaim them with a white noise system.

The ability to work more productively in a less stressful environment increases employee satisfaction by 125 to 174 percent, significantly improving worker retention and boosting your company’s reputation in the process.

Install a Sound Masking System in Building

Sound masking is generally used in commercial offices, but they are also suitable for hospitals, banks, libraries, courthouses, and call centers. State Systems provides the latest and most efficient white noise systems to reduce background noises in these types of settings. Choose from two options, including personal white noise systems for individual work areas and open-office sound masking systems for uniform coverage across multiple offices or cubicles.

If either option sounds like the right solution for your business, please contact State Systems today to request a free quote. We install white noise systems for commercial customers in Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Alabama.

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Cole H. Dennis Read More