Cubicles are partitioned work area of an office and are usually made up of desks. Cubicles are known for relatively small sizes, hence, sound waves tend to travel faster. If you have worked in an office setting with a cubicle, you must be aware of the so many challenges that come with it. Your space could be very tight that you’re always in distress of carrying out your duty effectively. Another one could be perpetual disturbance from your co-workers. Above all these, the most annoying of them is noise. People making noise in your cubicle may be very frustrating. This can be managed when you soundproof your cubicle.
In the same way, the sound of printing machines, fax machines, and cellphones from your colleagues’ desks could be very annoying and distracting. Although, it is believed that a cubicle gives you privacy and seclusion from colleagues so that you can have all the time to focus on your job. However, this is not true. In real sense, cubicles do not give you privacy. Cubicles only limit direct contact with your co-workers. They don’t prevent those annoying sound from reaching your desk. Hence, a very big reason to soundproof your cubicle.
You must also know that a 100% cubicle soundproofing is not achievable but there are ways to minimize sound around you in your cubicle.
In this article, I’ll tell you the cheapest way to soundproof a cubicle and some other soundproofing ideas that will work for you.
Why you should soundproof your cubicle
There are several reasons why you should soundproof your cubicle, either for the enhancement of your productivity or well-being. I’ll be limiting the reasons to just two in this article:
Peace of mind
Everyone indeed wants some privacy, even at their places of work. Peace of mind is important. If there’s anything at all that steals your peace of mind, it will definitely affect your productivity. The inability to focus on your job could be as a result of distraction.
As much as possible, you must ensure that nothing, especially noise, affects your job. If you spend the whole day regretting sharing the same office with your co-workers due to their noise, when would you perform your duty?
That’s why soundproofing your cubicle is necessary. There are a lot of options you can subscribe to. You just have to choose an affordable one for yourself.
Easier to complete work
Many companies already put measures in place to ensure tasks are executed as fast as possible. The measures include providing their workers with the best pieces of equipment and working environment. However, not all of them understand the necessity of soundproofing cubicles. It is one of those factors that affect productivity but many companies are oblivious to this fact. It’s pretty much easier to accomplish a given task when you have no external disturbance from around you.
Soundproof your Cubicle with Noise Reduction/Soundproofing Equipment
Sometimes, it’s very hard to put measures in place to ensure noise reduction in the office. This is as a result of the resources that will be expended in getting the right equipment. At the initial stage, it may be a bit challenging for you. But later, you would realize the importance of such an investment in your business. Because there will be an increase in the productivity of your employees.
Let’s take a look at some of the equipment you can invest in to ensure cubicle noise reduction:
If you’re looking for one of the most affordable noise reduction equipment, worry no more. One of the most efficient and less expensive ways to reduce noise in your cubicle is by getting acoustic panels. Acoustic panels are very impressive sound absorber and are also very easy to install in the office. They’re designed in a way that you can just suspend them on the wall while they’re doing the absorption and damping of harsh sound traveling from your colleague’s desk to yours.
While purchasing one, always ensure you’re picking a standard one as you’re likely to pick a low-quality option. If you want to avoid this problem, go for acoustic panels with the SAA (Sound Absorption Average) rating.
Acoustic panels are designed such that they don’t disfigure the office. People may even think they are mere artistic designs. By subscribing to this option, you’re sure to have less distraction from your colleagues while working.
You do not have to seek approval from the management to hang acoustic panels on the wall. So, that makes it one of the best options.
Foam panels are arguably the most affordable of all the techniques on this list. They’re very effective in blocking sound from penetrating to your side of the office. With foam panels, you wouldn’t have to spend too much.
Foam panels are much more available than the previous option, the acoustic panels. However, you must understand what foam panels are meant for exactly. You may be thinking foam panels will block noise but it doesn’t work that way. Foam panels aren’t bad at soundproofing though, so don’t get discouraged yet.
Foam panels absorb sound and reduce the effect of reverberation. Just like a normal foam, foam panels do not have a hard surface that bounces back the incident sound waves. Instead, the room surfaces are softened to reduce the echo of sound that travels between walls.
White noise machine
White noise machine has been traditionally used by people as sleeping gadget. However, this tool can also be used to reduce the level of unwanted sound in your cubicle. If you’re looking at soundproofing on a budget, I’ll recommend this machine for you.
Although, a white noise machine does not stop background noise. Its function can, however, be related to that of a neutralizer such that it produces a sound of neutral frequency that helps to shift your focus from the annoying sound of people and objects around.
A white noise machine is very good at dampening sound and will help you enjoy your work.
Noise cancellation headphones
Another piece of equipment you can invest in is the noise cancellation headphones. If any of these solutions provided above aren’t good for you, then this will be the best. It doesn’t cost much and it’s very effective. Just plug in your headphones, play some beautiful songs, and continue with your work.
It’s one of the most popular solutions adopted by people working in a cubicle. However, several factors are advised to be put into utmost consideration when you’re choosing a headphone. First, ensure that the option you’ve chosen has a lightweight feature, adjustable and long-lasting.
Noise cancellation headphones are a special type of headphones with distinct characteristics. Noise cancellation headphones can reduce all noise from the background with the noise control feature.
They’re also built with a microphone, making them very suitable for work environments. With that, you can receive and make calls right from your desk while background noise is reduced at the same time.
Rubber floor mats
If you’re looking for one of the easiest soundproofing techniques, then a rubber floor mat would be most likely the best thing to think of. They’re always available in different designs, sizes, textures, and quality grades. You just have to go for the one that you feel is the best for you and would cover the largest part of your floor.
Rubber floor mats can be cut out easily and attached to surfaces other than the floor – walls and even roofs. The materials are very durable and easy to clean, thanks to the antibacterial quality of the mats.
So, rubber floor mats can help you reduce unwanted and disturbing sound in your cubicle. Although, the effect of a rubber floor mat may not be as productive as that of the headphones, but it works efficiently well. Sometimes, it requires that you add some other soundproofing materials to complement the effectiveness of floor mats.
If you’re thinking of extending your cubicle walls, don’t you think that will cost you extra money and the management may not even approve it eventually? Sound-absorbing curtains could be the answer to your cubicle soundproofing. You can drop the thick curtains from the ceiling down to your cubicle to prevent noise from the other side of your desk.
Now that you’ve learnt about the various types of equipment that can be used to reduce office noise, you can now see how important noise control could be. Although, it is usually challenging at the initial stage but as time goes on, you’ll see the amazing results on your performance and productivity. As a matter of fact, some of these solutions are costly and time-consuming. However, you can go for a simpler and cheaper option, according to your budget.
You do not have to spend so much before a working solution is employed. With the options provided above, you will be able to minimize the noise in your office and maximize productivity.
Do you know any other way to soundproof a cubicle?
Kindly share it with us in the comment box.
Thanks for reading.