04/29/2002

Open Office Plan Breaks the Sound Barrier(s)

Dow Carpet Column - Part 2 of 3

 
Office walls have been steadily coming down over the past three decades in response to evolving needs in the workplace. In addition, companies have invested heavily in new technology, all with expectations of greater productivity and positive impact on the bottom line. However, the intended benefits have not been fully realized, and the cost is significant. This is reinforced in “The Ergonomics Edge” by noted ergonomics consultant Dan MacLeod, CPE, which includes a rule of thumb equating one-minute of time per day in the workplace to a value of roughly $500 over the course of a year. When multiplied across a company’s workforce, it is clear that even small improvements in productivity can be economically attractive.

In many cases, potential gains have been offset by productivity penalties due, in part, to a much greater complexity of acoustical issues. The results of the ASID study suggest that the problem is widespread. In fact, an alarming 70% of the respondents felt their productivity would increase if workspaces were less noisy. Underscoring the problem, a follow-up study found that 81% of business executives were unaware of the issue and unconcerned about office noises. Apparently, the complaints of the workers are being lost in the din of the office.

Some now see the open office as strictly an economic play, providing a vehicle for cost and space savings at the expense of occupancy quality. Others maintain the original vision of positive cultural changes and employee satisfaction. Whether the rationale is to promote better teamwork or simply to increase the number of people per square foot, open office layouts and the associated noise issues aren’t going away any time soon. It is a situation that demands attention, a view shared by many including Case Runolfson, CFM, Vice President of Facilities Management for Irving Group in Washington, D.C. Mr.  Runolfson recently commented on the situation, stating that, “Effective sound suppression is the most difficult challenge remaining in the open seating plan work environment.” With an eye towards solutions, he noted the benefits of a properly specified carpet-cushion composite from the perspective of both acoustic management and the improved carpet appearance retention and life cycle.

 


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Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

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Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
CLICK HERE to find out how.

Add highly responsive multi-zone comfort to any building project, in any climate. Our CITY MULTI H2i R2- and Y-Series VRF systems give you flexibility to fit the needs of any building. Enjoy 100% heating capacity at 0°F outdoor ambient, and 85% heating capacity at -13°F outdoor ambient.  For more information, log on to www.mitsubishipro.com


Visit our website today to learn about the design flexibility of a Morton building and the endless possibilities of partnering with our designBUILD team.


Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

We Can Help You Reduce Energy by 30%

Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
CLICK HERE to find out how.

Add highly responsive multi-zone comfort to any building project, in any climate. Our CITY MULTI H2i R2- and Y-Series VRF systems give you flexibility to fit the needs of any building. Enjoy 100% heating capacity at 0°F outdoor ambient, and 85% heating capacity at -13°F outdoor ambient.  For more information, log on to www.mitsubishipro.com

 
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