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Sound Masking In Open Office Environments

Meritec Sound Mask











Are you searching for a solution to the inevitable noise pollution of an open space work environment?

The traditional method of sound proofing a space can be expensive and laborious and it may not even give you the desired effect. There is now a much simpler solution which doesn’t require a whole office overhaul and that is Sound Masking.

Sound masking is the introduction of neutral sounds, such as white noise, into an environment in order to cover up other sounds in the area. This technology can be beneficial in a variety of applications, however, perhaps the most notable benefit can be seen in an open office space. Let’s see why sound masking in open office environments can change the way you work;


One of the biggest concerns for businesses is privacy. When there is an open office space it can be difficult to ensure that sensitive issues being discussed won’t be overheard. This can be even more important in cases where client privacy is not just a priority, but a legal requirement, such as a law firm or a healthcare facility.

In a standard open space office, anyone could simply walk by and overhear what’s being discussed. This can even be the case when the doors to a meeting room are closed as sound can still travel through the walls.

This might not seem like a major issue but in the case of a law firm or a healthcare facility, precautions must be taken for legal reasons to eliminate the potential for eavesdropping, accidental or otherwise. And while it may not be a legal requirement in other areas, taking measures to ensure your clients confidentiality is just good business practice.

Sound masking allows you to achieve that!

Special speakers are installed into the ceiling of a room which act to limit the audibility of any conversation to that specific space. The white noise played through the speakers is also entirely adjustable and can be tuned to a specific portion of the sound spectrum. In this way you can ensure that human speech is blocked out, however other noises, such as emergency alarms, can still be heard.




Not only does sound masking in open office environments ensure privacy, it can also help you work harder!

Studies have shown that by eliminating outside distractions sound masking can help increase productivity by around 20%. It has also been observed to reduce errors in basic tasks, such as data entry by about 30% – 35%.

The fact of the matter is, the better your employees are able to concentrate, the better they’ll be able to do their work.

Sound Masking vs. Soundproofing

You may be asking yourself, why use sound masking to eliminate ambient conversation from an open office space? Or wouldn’t soundproofing be just as effective?

The biggest downfall of soundproofing is that it can be expensive and often means an entire overhaul of your building. You could alternatively try retrofitting a room with panels which claim to be soundproof, but in many cases, they’ll barely muffle the noise, much less eliminate it.

Sound masking, on the other hand, is the most effective available tool for eliminating noise, not to mention the cheapest. This is because sound masking is dynamic, as opposed to soundproofing. In the case you do manage to effectively soundproof your office, then they’ll simply block all noise indiscriminately.

That means that if there’s outside noise that you DO need to hear, like an emergency alarm, well, you’re out of luck… The beauty of sound masking, however, is that you can specifically target human voices, without affecting the rest of the sound spectrum.

Sound masking can also be flexible. Depending on your needs, you can choose which areas you want masked and which you don’t. You may choose to limit it to just conference rooms or have the entire office set up with sound masking. Wherever you do decide to use it, it can be adapted the noise of that area, as opposed to structural soundproofing, which is static.

Sound masking in open office environments offers many benefits. But most important of all is that they provide peace of mind; peace from the guaranteed privacy, peace from the removal of distracting outside noise, and peace in knowing that not only is it a simple and effective solution, but also the most cost efficient.

No matter the profession, sound masking is an important upgrade to both your facilities and the way you work!

If you have further questions, then please give us a call.