Noise from printers, photocopiers, telephones or keyboards is unavoidable in everyday office life. However, modern companies are implementing soundproofing measures to maintain productivity and protect employees' health against noise stress. Why? Because noise stress can result in employee performance dropping by up to 10%. One of the most efficient ways to combat this is by implementing sound-absorbing acoustic lights.
Forms of noise
Acoustic trauma rarely occurs in everyday office life, but in occupational work, e.g. construction work, it’s a daily hazard that can affect workers.
This is a stress reaction to excessive noise levels that reduces performance and affects health. This form of noise trauma occurs most frequently in everyday office life.
Inadequate sound suppression ensures that personal conversations are also heard. When there is a lack of acoustic privacy, you constantly feel "overheard".
There are legal requirements that protect workers from noise exposure in Ireland. When the sound level is between 80dB(A) and 85dB(A) employers must assess the risk to their workers' health and provide them with information, hearing checks, trainings as well as advice on wearing hearing protection. When the noise exposure is at the 85dB (A), employers must put in place a programme to reduce the noise level, provide the services of a registered medical practitioner to carry out hearing checks and audiometric testing and put up signs indicating that the noise level in the area is likely to exceed 85dB (A).
Sound pressure levels of > 55 dB are perceived as annoying
At > 70 dB, the voice quality suffers
In offices, the background noise level should not exceed 30-45 dB
In industrial workplaces, background noise levels of 65-70 dB are unavoidable
The most significant noise pollution in the office comes from electronic devices and the workers themselves. With a good office layout and high-quality acoustic lamps, you can ensure better room acoustics and higher employee satisfaction.
Places of use for acoustic lamps
There are several ways to reduce noise in the office (see below for other measures). Also, acoustic dampening is vital in public spaces, like restaurants. Acoustic lights are a practical and aesthetically pleasing solution as they combine lighting and sound absorption by having a body made of sound-absorbing materials, such as felt.
Further noise reduction measures
Soundproofing can be achieved with acoustic ceilings in addition to acoustic lamps.
Since walls are very hard, they reflect the sound. Pictures, calendars, or posters can counteract this.
In contrast to parquet, carpets and rugs absorb footfall noise, while house plants can reduce noise too.
Bookshelves, filing cabinets, and a sofa have a positive influence on the room’s acoustics.
Sound-absorbing blinds or curtains prevent noise from bouncing off the windows.
Copiers and printers should be placed in a separate room as most people find this source of noise annoying.