Sound Masking in Technology

Modern offices feature a variety of workspaces such as engineering labs, co-shared spaces and huddle rooms, each that require their own unique solutions for improving worker comfort, productivity, and speech privacy. Modern open offices contain far more reflective materials, such as glass and wood, than ever before. Then, combine those factors with more benching and less private offices. While these changes have made workplaces more aesthetically pleasing and collaborative, it has also affected the acoustics.

A sound masking system by Cambridge Sound Management improves the acoustic environment, enabling employees to feel more comfortable and less distracted in environments found in today’s modern corporate world.

Case Study: Applied Systems

“The introduction [of sound masking] has almost created an ‘invisible audio partition’ between our customer experience teams and our software development teams – essential in open plan environments. ”

– Lucy Sargent, Director, Customer Experience Manager, Applied Systems UK

applied systems sound masking case study

More Technology Case Studies

Industry Challenges

  • Modern corporate offices use fewer sound absorbing materials (rugs, material partitions, etc.) in favor of reflective surfaces like metal, aluminum, glass and gypsum, contributing to unwanted noise reflections and buildup.
  • Workstations have shrunk from 8 ft x 8 ft to 6 ft x 6 ft (2.5 m x 2.5 m to 1.8 m x 1.8 m) and partitions have reduced from 66” to as low as 42” (168 cm to as low as 107 cm) in height.
  • More companies are seeking LEED certification and implementing “green” design and construction initiatives, which often reduce speech privacy.

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  • An increase in operating costs has led businesses to maximize existing space, leading to more employees in the same workspace.
  • With smaller workstation footprints, noise levels increase significantly and worker speech privacy decreases.
  • Cubicle wall heights have dropped significantly to enable better worker collaboration and provide a more open environment.
  • Most worker mistakes and lower individual productivity can be attributed to workplace distractions such as overheard conversations.


Cambridge Sound Management sound masking systems

  • Improve worker performance nearly 10% by reducing conversational distractions according to scientific research. 
  • Address the need for acoustic treatment outlined in upcoming LEED Commercial Interiors Certification. Also mitigates the acoustic issues created by windows to meet the LEED requirement for daylighting and views.


  • To minimize construction costs, demountable walls are being installed which only extend up to the ceiling, not to the deck, allowing spillover of sound through the plenum into adjacent work areas.
  • Workers expect a level of speech privacy in collaborative spaces, such as conference rooms, that is rarely accomplished with the construction techniques being used.


Cambridge Sound Management sound masking systems

  • Cover sound that “spills” between adjacent work environments.
  • Mask conversations in adjoining hallways from being distracting to conference room meeting participants.
  • Mask conversations in conference rooms from being overheard in adjoining offices or hallways.



  • To reduce operating costs, many call center designs have their operators work in very close quarters, often 2 ft x 4 ft or 4 ft x 4 ft (61 cm x 61 cm or 122 cm x 122 cm) workstations, with low panels for easy visibility.
  • Some call centers are designed without partitions to encourage consultation between operators to solve customer problems.
  • Call centers are often impacted by every kind of noise distraction – from co-workers on the phone or having quick discussions to everyday office equipment or people movement.


Cambridge Sound Management sound masking systems

  • Cover conversations to help mitigate distractions.
  • Improve acoustical environment, which has been shown to help reduce turnover.

Our corporate customers are highly satisfied with the results of our sound masking systems. Learn more about their results in the following case studies.


An Effective and Budget Friendly Solution

Read more to see how a Cambridge Sound Management sound masking compares to other acoustic treatment options.

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