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Soundscapes for employee loyalty

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Unpleasant background noise damages talent retention by lowering employees’ job satisfaction and commitment, research shows. Biophilic workplace soundscapes masks noise pollution and promotes quality of life and healthy workplace design, which are deciding factors for your prospective employees.

Job satisfaction

Research suggests that noise affects job satisfaction. One field study of over 2,000 employees found a significant negative correlation between job satisfaction and noise disturbances.1 Another study found that lower levels of ambient noise helped to buffer the negative impact of psychosocial job stress upon job satisfaction and organizational commitment.2

Decreased job satisfaction has also been linked to decreased speech privacy.3

Biophilic soundscapes are a verified alternative to traditional sound masking and can reduce the impact of noise disturbances and improve speech privacy,4 while also promoting restoration5 and wellbeing.

Prospective employees

Employees consistently favour job opportunities that emphasise improved quality of life. In a survey of 7,600 participants, 33% said that workplace design would significantly affect their decision to work at a company.6

Employees now consider a holistic view of employment opportunities, which incorporates workspace design and wellbeing.



1. Sundstrom, E., Town, J. P., Rice, R. W., Osborn, D. P., & Brill, M. (1994). Office Noise, Satisfaction, and Performance. Environment and Behavior, 26(2), 195-222.

2. Leather, P., Beale, D., & Sullivan, L. (2003). Noise, psychosocial stress and their interaction in the workplace. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 23(2), 213-222.

3. Lee, P. J., Lee, B. K., Jeon, J. Y., Zhang, M., & Kang, J. (2016). Impact of noise on self-rated job satisfaction and health in open-plan offices: a structural equation modelling approach.Ergonomics, 59(2), 222–234.

4. Haapakangas, A., Kankkunen, E., Hongisto, V., Virjonen, P., Oliva, D., & Keskinen, E. (2011). Effects of five speech masking sounds on performance and acoustic satisfaction. implications for open-plan offices.Acta Acustica United with Acustica.

5. DeLoach, A. G., Carter, J. P., & Braasch, J. (2015). Tuning the cognitive environment: Sound masking with “natural” sounds in open-plan offices.The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America.

6. Cooper, C. (2015). Human Spaces: The global impact of biophilic design in the workplace.Interface inc.

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