The shift towards open plan office layouts has truly altered the way we work. With a myriad of benefits, open workspaces promote teamwork, cooperation and creativity. Additionally, open plan offices often keep overheads lower, allowing more employees to work in one space.
Despite all the positive outcomes of open plan office space, there can a few drawbacks, the most reported being noise. Conversations, conference calls, loud typing – all an inevitability in any busy office. These factors can result in a reduction of productivity and conceded concentration by staff. However, you don’t need to throw the baby out with the bath water – you can maintain the benefits of open plan working, while combating noisy office distractions.
1. Put up a wall (a physical one!)
Unlike emotional walls, a physical wall can drastically improve your wellbeing in the office. Dividers, screens and walls can work to significantly reduce office noise by creating an acoustic barrier. The size and type of wall used will cause varying degrees of office soundproofing. There are an array of different option for office walls including:
2. Designating quiet zones
Creating specific areas for quiet time is a great way to solve office noise issues. Whether it be designated rooms, corners or tables, designated quiet spaces with more permanent furniture will help employees focus on the task at hand. Sound absorbing media booths are a great option for meetings in an open plan office. Additionally, to minimise the noise caused by people talking on the phone, you can try noise-reducing phone booths.
3. Smart Furniture
A simple, inexpensive way to reduce noise in an open plan space, smart furniture is designed in a way that keeps noise down. Options such as the Miss Pak from SmartSpace offer a chair with inbuilt acoustic panels to absorb conversational noise. Fabric covered seating is also great for noise absorption, and seemingly minor details like a high back is actually great for blocking out sound.
you would like any help with any of these noisy office solutions or any other ideas for an open plan office space, the team at SmartSpace can help. With ideas an solutions to fit all budgets, SmartSpace specialise in creating functional, productive working environments.