Acoustic office furniture is quickly becoming the go-to choice for businesses and organizations grappling with the issue of noise pollution in an open office environment. A study conducted in May 2015 by internationally recognized architect–acoustics consultant Alpo Halme confirms that INTO the Nordic Silence furniture achieves what it promises: a pleasant work environment devoid of noise and commotion.
Businesses typically choose open plan offices because of their ability to bring down rent costs and stimulate interaction and co-working among staff. However, researchers working in the field of business management and work well-being have brought to light the model’s potential drawbacks – most importantly, the loss of peace and privacy that comes with sharing a common space with up to dozens of people at once.
More than a mere workplace nuisance, noise pollution in an open work environment can cause a major drop in employee productivity. Tasks requiring complex verbal process are especially prone to suffering from constant interruptions and chatter. At its worst, noise pollution can be a serious psychological and physical health hazard, contributing to increased sick leaves.
All business managers should be concerned with findings as significant as these. After all, why invest in an open office environment if the togetherness it brings will kill rather than boost productivity and employee well-being?
Luckily, there is an easy solution.
Acoustic furniture restores silence in the open office
The INTO the Nordic Silence concept of sound-friendly furniture was created for a simple reason: to bring back peace and privacy to open offices. To make sure our clients are really getting their money’s worth, we invited architect-acoustics consultant Alpo Halme to conduct a thorough acoustics study at our showroom in Vallila, Helsinki.
The showroom is 6 meters tall with some acoustic paneling in the ceiling.
The results were unambiguous. Alpo and his team found INTO furniture solutions to dramatically cut down noise in the open space. Thanks to their innovative design and sound-friendly construction materials, our room-like Pod spaces achieve near-total silence while our semi-open Roll In, Focus and Cube workstations effectively block sound in the open space.
Some findings from the study
- POD rooms are roughly as sound-proof as conventional, fixed meeting rooms with double plasterboards and 100 mm mineral wool between them
- POD PHONE mutes and breaks down speech effectively, rendering it unintelligible to anybody outside the booth
- The semi-enclosed ROLL IN workstation diffuses sound six times more effectively than mere open space would
- The sound-absorbing qualities of FOCUS, another semi-enclosed workstation, are equivalent to those of a well-made flush door; if two FOCUS workstations are faced towards each other, their users will hear each other’s speech and movement as if they were really 15 meters apart in open space
- CUBE allows people sitting across from each other to hold a conversation while rendering speech barely intelligible to anybody positioned behind the couch
Don’t believe it? Visit our showroom and test the products for yourself!