Blocking out distractions when working in an informal open-office setup is a real challenge. It takes a lot of strength and concentration not to pay attention to the surrounding sounds, but this doesn’t mean that you’re not struggling.
Talking to a colleague or trying to focus on significant problems becomes quite tricky and energy consuming, but you shouldn’t go through that.
One of the best solutions to the sound problem in your office comes for the white noise machines, aka the “sound making systems.”
What are the white noise machines?
The sound masking systems can reduce transient noise, helping one concentrate better in their work. Technically speaking, the white noise machine is a broadband noise that includes the entire range of human hearing with the same power at every frequency point.
Equal power doesn’t mean that you’re going to hear every frequency equally loud. Our ears pick up the higher frequencies a lot more, which is why the white noise is a bit “hissy.” You cannot say it’s as soothing as the waterfall or ocean waves.
The term “white noise” is a generic term for all sorts of broadband noise. Scientific studies are also using the “pink noise” term a lot. The pink noise resembles to the white noise, but it puts accents on the lower frequencies. Some think it sounds more pleasing, reminding you of a stream of water.
Is there science behind the white noise machines?
White noise machines don’t block out noise, but instead, cover it up. They send continuous, unobtrusive sound into the office space.
They work because our mind can tune out continuous and steady noise. It’s easier to fall asleep when you hear the rain dropping on the roof. It’s also easier to concentrate if you hear a fan running in the background. It’s a natural thing for our brain to adjust to the predictable background noise. White noise machines are capable of mimicking the steady sounds that are easy to ignore.
The transient noise (someone dropping a box, two colleagues chatting nearby) are difficult to ignore. Our mind is tempted to react, and it’s why we suddenly get interested in snippets of a conversation happening close to our office. It comes from our ancestors that had to pay attention when hunting or gathering for surviving. However, when there are no tigers around, and you’re trying not to miss your deadline, this skill is rather useless.
As we’re smart as we are continually improving, the white noise machines have become the best solution to the problem.
Using noise machine for office is one of the best options for increasing efficiency in the workplace. However, keep in mind that it’s not only in the office where you can use the white noise machine. You should check Soundproofable.com to find out more about the functions of white noise. You can use it in and outside of your home, as it’s always important to stay calm and relax and a white noise machine can do that. Soundproofable.com is going to tell you everything you need to know about white noise, its functions, and utility in your life. You need to check it.
What does “white noise” sounds like?
White noise depicts any constant, unchanging background noise and it may describe a various range of sound:
- Machinery noises: washing, machine, air conditioning noises
- Nature sounds: jungle, rain, crickets chirping, sea, waves
- Ambient soundscapes: crowd noise, a crackling campfire, aircraft interior
Some people like using white noise when they’re trying to fall asleep and not the harsh tone of pure white sounds.
Interestingly enough, there are other colors describing sounds. Violet, red, brown and grey noise share their part too. The various colors represent a particular spectral density. Each of them has specific applications in engineering, acoustics, and physics.
What are the benefits of a white noise machine in an office?
White noise helps to fall asleep, so it doesn’t quite make sense using a white noise machine in the office. Right?
It’s quite common nowadays to have open-plan offices. This type of offices make it easier for an informal stand-up, but it’s not that great for the concentration of the employee.
Here are the benefits of white noise machines:
- They create client/patient privacy. White noise can obscure speech so that nobody is eavesdropping when you’re in the middle of a private conversation. Sound masking systems are a regular accessory in hospitals, healthcare clinics, psychotherapists’ offices or in any other places where the confidentiality is fundamental.
- They increase the focusing power and productivity in the office. Even if the teamwork counts for productivity, it’s the personal performance that matters even more. It seems that human speech is the most distraction type of background noise and it’s in our nature to be tempted by the conversations. White noise machines patterns make a conversation trying to understand, even if you’re nearby.
- They improve the health as the office noises are lowering motivation and the ability of employees to recall essential details. It means that productivity decreases and the employee isn’t happy as his workplace anymore either.
- The white noise machines protect the information. We all care for some private conversation, and white noise machines can help us with that.
How to design a white noise system in your office?
Placing just one single white noise machine isn’t going to do it for your office. You should develop a whole system including several white noise machines that you place in specific areas. Below raised access floors, in open structures, above the suspended ceilings are the most common places, but you can install them wherever you think they provide adequate coverage while remaining subtle.
Keep in mind that you don’t need to be an expert on white noise machines. It’s better that you talk to the professionals that can present you with several options. Some white noises devices may work better for your offices, so it’s wiser to have a professional opinion.
It’s useless to install white noises machines that aren’t good enough for your space or needs.