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Why is the control of noise in an office important?

by , 27 August 2013
Health and safety in the workplace is the joint responsibility of you and your employees. But, you're responsible for providing a work environment that's safe and without risk to the health of your employees. This includes controlling noise levels in your office. Here's why this is important...

Health and safety isn't only for factories and mines. The Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) covers all places where your employees work. This includes your office. It's crucial that you control noise levels.

Here's why the control of noise in an office is important

Generally, the levels of noise in office areas are below those levels known to pose a risk to hearing, says the Health&Safety Advisor.

In offices, 'annoyance' noise is more likely and may interfere with communication, annoy and affect your employee's performance of tasks like reading and writing.

This can be costly for your company. Noise that prevents an employee from understanding an instruction or warning signal may also be a risk to safety.

For these reasons, it's important to consider what you can do to control unwanted noise in your office.

If you want to identify disturbing noise sources in your office, it's best to ask employees working in the area a series of questions, for example:

  • What noise is most disturbing (if any)?
  • When does it occur?
  • What effect does it have?
  • How do you deal with disturbing noise?

You can do this using a general walk-through survey that includes interviewing employees.

Where you've identified noise issues as a problem in your office, you should undertake an assessment and develop noise control measures.

Well there you have it.

Knowing why the control of noise in an office is important will help ensure you identify and eliminate disturbing noise sources in your office.

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