Creating Calm: Enhancing Workplace Wellbeing and Productivity Through Acoustic Design


The Impact of Poor Acoustic Design

In today’s world of open-plan office spaces, noise pollution has become a significant issue. With the constant barrage of phone calls, office chatter, and the incessant hum of technology, it’s not surprising that employees often struggle to concentrate. The impact of poor acoustic design goes beyond annoyance; it can significantly affect staff wellbeing and productivity.

The Sound of Productivity Plummeting

According to research from the British Journal of Psychology, there is a 66% decrease in productivity due to noise in the workplace. This statistic is a stark reminder of how critical a quiet and calm work environment is for employees to perform at their best.

Research from the University of California found that the average time between interruptions at work is only 11 minutes. These interruptions can come from various sources, including loud conversations, equipment noise, and even external sounds leaking into the workspace.

But the real kicker is this: once interrupted, it takes an average of 23 minutes for workers to refocus on their tasks. That’s nearly half an hour lost for every interruption, which quickly adds up over a workday or week. This continuous cycle of interruption and refocusing can lead to fatigue, stress, and overall reduced productivity.

If employees are disturbed every 11 minutes, and take 23 minutes to re-focus, are they ever fully focused?

The Wellness Factor

Poor acoustic design doesn’t just hurt productivity; it can also negatively impact employee wellbeing. Excessive noise levels can lead to increased stress, decreased job satisfaction, and even physical health issues like headaches and hypertension.

Moreover, in an era where mental health is rightfully gaining more attention, it’s crucial to acknowledge that a noisy workplace can contribute to anxiety and other mental health issues. Therefore, improving the acoustic environment isn’t just about boosting productivity – it’s also about caring for the wellbeing of employees.

The Way Forward

Addressing the issue of poor acoustic design is not just about turning down the volume. It requires a strategic approach that considers various factors, including office layout, building materials, and even the nature of the work being done.

Solutions can range from simple steps like providing noise-cancelling headphones to more complex measures like redesigning the workspace to include quiet zones or soundproof rooms. Investing in acoustic panels, carpets, and other sound-absorbing materials can also significantly reduce noise levels helping to create calm.
In conclusion, it’s clear that poor acoustic design has far-reaching impacts on both productivity and staff wellbeing. As such, companies should make it a priority to address noise issues in their workplaces. After all, a happier, healthier, and more focused workforce is not just good for employees – it’s good for business too.


Read more about our innovative approach to product design here and if you would like to find out more about our products, we would love to hear from you. Give us a call on +44 (0)20 3889 9888, email us at or fill in our contact form on our website here