Oregon State Board of Nursing
Reducing Distractions and Protecting Speech Privacy for Public Safety Workers
In many ways, the Oregon State Board of Nursing’s office is like a lot of other offices across the country with a mix of cubicles and private office space. And like many typical office spaces, noise distractions and lack of speech privacy were a concern. Office management was fielding complaints from workers that there was too much noise from cross talk in the open office area and it was making it difficult for them to concentrate.
Office management asked their office furniture reps if there were any noise blocking solutions that might be effective. The only solutions offered were hanging panels between cubicles. While this may have been marginally acceptable for individual cubicles, it wouldn’t be practical to have hanging partitions throughout the office – people would be likely to walk into them. Additionally, the partitions were expensive, unsightly, and would have blocked the ambient light from reaching the inner office areas.
Office management tasked Scott VanOrden from their IT team with finding a technological solution to their problem. After some research, VanOrden found that sound masking; the process of adding a low level, unobtrusive background sound to an environment; might be a viable option. The introduced masking noise, specifically tuned to the frequency and amplitude of human speech, covers up, or “masks” excess speech noise, making the affected environment more comfortable, private, and free of excess noise distractions. A quick web search drove him to Cambridge Sound Management’s website where he requested more information. Cambridge Sound Management staff connected VanOrden with nearby integrator Applied Technical Systems who demoed the product and explained its capabilities.
“Sound Masking from Cambridge Sound Management keeps the cross talk down between the cubicle areas and also helps keep conversations in private offices private. It really works.” – Scott VanOrden, Network Administrator, Oregon State Board of Nursing
QtPro™ Sound Masking System
Applied Technical Systems installed Cambridge Sound Management’s cost effective QtPro 600™ sound masking system to accommodate the acoustical requirements of the 8000 square foot space. Small, barely visible emitters (speakers) were installed in the ceiling tiles throughout the entire space including open office staff work stations, corridors, and private offices.
A More Pleasant Work Environment
Employees that returned to the office after the sound masking was installed were pleasantly surprised to hear the masking noise and the noticeable decrease in distractions. New employees didn’t notice the masking noise at all. Upon employee request, masking was turned up in the corridor outside of the interview rooms to provide better privacy for interviews.
About the Oregon State Board of Nursing
The Oregon State Board of Nursing safeguards the public’s health and wellbeing by providing guidance for, and regulation of, entry into the profession, nursing education, and continuing safe practice. The Board of Nursing, with the help of its staff, determines licensure and certification requirements; interprets the Oregon Nurse Practice Act; evaluates and approves nursing education programs and nursing assistant training programs; issues licenses and renewals; investigates complaints and takes disciplinary action against nurses and nursing assistants who violate the Oregon Nurse Practice Act; maintains the nursing assistant registry; and administers nursing assistant competency evaluations.
About Applied Technical Systems
Applied Technical Systems Inc. is a privately owned company with offices in Portland and Seattle that specializes in all phases of the low voltage industry. ATS can assist with design and implementation of structured cabling infrastructure systems, data networks, CCTV, phone systems, and of course, sound masking. With a dedicated staff of project managers and technicians, ATS sees that every project is managed and installed with integrity and attention to detail.
About Cambridge Sound Management
Cambridge Sound Management, Inc., the world’s largest provider of sound masking solutions, manufactures QtPro and DynasoundPro sound masking systems to help organizations across multiple industries protect speech privacy, reduce noise distractions, and increase workplace productivity. Cambridge Sound Management’s proprietary sound masking technology works by emitting a uniform, barely perceptible background sound at the frequencies of human speech. Cost-effective and easy to install, their sound masking, office paging, and background music systems are deployed in hundreds of millions of square feet of space throughout the world including commercial organizations, healthcare facilities, financial services, government agencies, and educational institutions. Cambridge Sound Management is a Biamp Systems company.