Comprehensive Privacy Solutions
If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.
- Abraham Maslow
Most companies are one-trick ponies, offering a “one-size-fits-all" option. They offer walls, or they offer a particular type of sound masking system, or they sell panels or acoustic flooring. But you need a solution, and the product they're selling may not be the best solution for your space. While sound masking is typically the best place to start, an effective acoustic solution often requires a mix of acoustic tools. MPS specializes in custom acoustic solutions, not simply product sales, and we'd love to discuss the unique acoustic challenges of your environment.
How Speech Privacy Works
Absorb, Block, and Cover – “The ABC’s” – represent the three ways you can improve your acoustic environment and achieve necessary privacy levels.
Absorb - using acoustic panels or dividers can absorb distracting sounds as well as cut down on visual distractions.
Block - installing partitions can reduce both acoustic and visual distractions.
Cover - adding a source of unstructured, low-level background sound with a modern, adaptive sound masking system can cover distracting noise and increase speech privacy.
Most office environments will require some combination of these three tools to provide an acoustically pleasing atmosphere. In most cases, no one tool by itself will solve your privacy needs. While Covering provides the greatest increase in privacy per dollar invested, it often needs a mixture of Absorption and Blocking components in order to achieve specific speech privacy levels.
When treating an acoustic environment, Sound Masking is usually going to provide the most bang for the buck. We usually start here.
What is Sound Masking?
The VoiceArrest™ Sound Masking System
The VoiceArrest™ System offers some unique solutions, including adaptive sound masking that automatically adjusts the masking volume to provide just the right amount of privacy to the zone(s) being covered, as well as music-quality speakers and some of the most user-friendly software available.
Passive v. Active Privacy Leaks
Most privacy breaches are simple and innocent. An employee's cubicle is near an executive office, and they unintentionally overhear confidential information. Sound masking alone will treat most of these cases. But often there's nothing innocent about it, and you don't have to show up on 007's radar to be a target. Consider:
- Walls, doors, and windows vibrate and can transmit sound
- HVAC ducts can carry sound far from the intended audience
- Telephones can be bugged
MPS offers a wide range of inexpensive treatments for doors, windows, HVAC ducts, and other sound-transmitting materials, as well as more advanced anti-espionage products.
Pretty Spaces are Often Acoustic Nightmares
The aesthetic draw of a converted warehouse with its exposed brick walls and open ceiling attracts many businesses. Others have hardwood floors or polished steel surfaces which also look very nice. Unfortunately, there’s an acoustic trade-off for such aesthetics. The reason such decorative touches make speech privacy such a challenge are fairly straightforward:
hard surfaces reflect sound, and whether you’re in a gymnasium or a converted warehouse, there’s little to absorb sound waves.
MPS Acoustic Panels are a great way to maintain your workplace aesthetics while offering significant sound-absorbing benefits and improving your Privacy Index.
How Much Will Privacy Cost Me?
There are a number of ingredients to help you achieve your privacy goals, and each "privacy recipe" should be tailored to your environment and budget. Whether you're treating a small office or an entire facility, one thing is clear: it's a small investment for the very real and measurable ROI gains you'll realize!
In an ideal world where cost was not a factor, everyone would employ all three and crank their Privacy Index score up somewhere near 100%. However, the cost does matter, so the trick is to maximize the Privacy Index score while minimizing the cost. Starting with a cutting edge Sound Masking System as a Covering solution will give you the “most bang for the buck." The benefit per dollar spent makes it the best place to start. Then, if additional privacy is needed, one of the other options can be employed.