An often overlooked aspect of commercial interior design is reducing office noise. Most projects we work on here at SKUTCHI Designs tend to prioritize the function or aesthetics of a room. Not necessarily how to keep that room as quiet and distraction free as possible. However, noise pollution management is an important, yet often overlooked aspect of a healthy work environment. How important is it? Let’s explore that answer…
Distraction. Distractions surround us constantly while we work. People walking past our desks, microwaves beeping in the breakroom, phone notifications from 50 different apps we don’t use, etc. Coworkers discussing everything from work projects and deadlines to the new season of whatever is dropping on their favorite streaming service. Every distraction which takes your attention away from the task at hand requires more time to gain that focus back. What’s more is that repeated distractions not only add to the time it takes to complete an assignment, but they actually decrease the quality of your work. Reducing office noise and visual distractions become important not just for the individual, but for the collective productivity of the workplace as a whole.
Distractions in the Open Office
According to the International Management Facility Association, nearly 70% of U.S. employees currently work in some variation of an open office environment. This started around 15 years ago or so. Businesses started refitting their workplace with the goal of eliminating the walled-off cubicle mazes workers toiled away in during the 80’s and 90’s. Businesses and corporations traded the expense of endless rows of modular workstation walls for sofas, recliners, grouped workstations, collaboration tables, and shared desking stations.
The idea was to decompartmentalize the work environment, and in doing so, increase collaboration and interaction between coworkers to boost productivity. The problem is an open office floorplan is a noisy one. Also… it hasn’t worked. In fact, it had the opposite effect. Taking away the cubicles and placing everybody in a big room together seemed like a good idea at the time, but the noise and distractions actually caused coworkers to collaborate less. Productivity dipped instead of rose. Workers actually looked for ways to avoid interacting with the people sitting next to them.
Employees Want Quiet
Reducing office noise in the workplace is important. Employees constantly cite ambient noise as a top workplace distraction they deal with daily. Workers want to collaborate; they just want to do so on their terms. Workers want managed and minimized distractions. Earbuds, Zoom, email, cubicles with doors, whatever it takes… they want privacy in a quiet and distraction free environment.
Eco-friendly Products for Reducing Office Noise
A couple of years ago, SKUTCHI Designs introduced our eSCAPE line of acoustical solutions to our clients. They were an instant success. Our eSCAPE acoustic panels absorb ambient noises in open spaces and are used in a number of different areas of your workplace. This includes wall panels, hanging (suspended) panels, cubicle wall extensions, desk dividers, modesty panels, as well as freestanding divider walls.
These panels are extremely versatile, inexpensive, made from 100% recycled PET (short for polyethylene terephthalate), and made here in the USA. Additionally, these sheets of recycled material require very little energy or natural resources to manufacture.
Best of all, the number one source for recycled PET is discarded water and soda bottles and other types of food packaging. In keeping with our mission to provide businesses environmentally responsible products, our eSCAPE line of products are made from taking this recycled plastic and extrude and compress it into sound absorbing panels. These panels are then cut into different shapes and sizes to be used in a variety of applications.
Learn More About eSCAPE Products by SKUTCHI Designs Inc.
Finally, If you’d like to learn more about reducing office noise with our eSCAPE products, it’s easy. Also, you can call us at (888) 993-3757 or email us at: [email protected]. Remember, you can also shop our existing catalog of PET products here: https://www.skutchi.com/category/acoustical-solutions/
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