Nothing sucks more than being *super* focused at work, only to be distracted by maingay officemates who are laughing three desks away. Admit it: Noise is a real problem at work—especially if your office has transformed your desks into an open, co-working space.
Don’t worry, you’re not alone in this struggle against ingay. In a study commissioned by global communications company Poly and conducted by HR advisory and research firm FutureWorkplace, it was revealed that “99 percent of employees are distracted some of the time in the office.” And in most cases, these distractions come from—you guessed it—noise.
The study also found that most offices are shifting their traditional desk layouts to co-working spaces. This modern layout is said to attract Gen Z and Millennials—55 percent of Gen Z and 56 percent of Millennials “prefer open office spaces as compared to the older generations who still predominantly choose traditional office setup, as open offices appeal to the younger generation due to the vibe and aesthetics.”
However, this type of office space is more prone to noise which can then disrupt the employees’ productivity. According to research, the most common distractions that employees encounter are: coworkers talking loudly over the phone, office celebrations, officemates talking nearby, table and video games, phone rings and alerts, and bringing pets in the office.
The study reports that these distractions cause nearly one in three employees “to lose focus in productivity,” while 48 percent of their 5,151 participants reported that they have started to lack focus in getting things done.
Both employees and employers are now trying to come up with solutions to combat workplace ingay. Around 34 percent of the respondents stated that they look for quiet spots in the office, while some utilize technologies such as music headphones and noise-canceling earphones to “stay productive despite being in a shared space.” Employers, on the other hand, have started to establish quiet zones for those who would prefer to work in silent spaces. They have also started to look into better and revamped office layouts that would improve noise feedback in their offices.
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