Sound Masking VS “White Noise”

If you have or are looking for a great VoIP or other business phone solution in Central Florida, you’ve probably heard the terms sound masking and white noise (sometimes called pink noise) tossed around from time to time. But what exactly do these terms mean and are they truly equivalent?
Privacy, clarity, and productivity for your business calls are invaluable. Business phone services that offer sound masking help you achieve all three of these important “phone goals” simultaneously.

Sound Masking Protects Speech Privacy
By adding a low level of background noise to a phone call, masking makes it much more difficult for others in the call center to hear and understand the conversations between your phone workers and your on-phone clients. This is the most rudimentary purpose of sound masking – to guard speech privacy.

The addition of extra sound might seem like it would create a super-noisy work environment, but in fact, it does not. The reason is that the sound mask raises the ambient level of the entire workroom so that the work environment actually seems quieter – but “white noise” doesn’t do this. Sound masking is sometimes referred to as white noise, but technically, they differ. White noise is more like TV or radio static.

Sound Masking Reduces Distractions
As noted above, white noise would add to the distraction and perceived noise level of a room, but sound masking reduces such distractions. The reason is that it makes it more difficult to hear intelligible human speech except for that coming directly into your ear through the headphones or telephone.

Workers, therefore, can more easily focus on the task at hand and won’t run the risk of disturbing their coworkers either. The sound mask is sufficiently loud that it will blur distant speech and reduce background distractions from true white/pink noise or other sources. But it is not loud enough to disturb the participants in the actual phone conversation.

Sound Masking Boost Worker Productivity
Because it reduces distractions, sound masking is going to increase worker focus, which in turn, boosts worker productivity. But another reason for this is that the mask itself is NOT distracting (like “white noise” would be).

A sound mask is an “ambient” sound, which is more like the sound of air or water flowing steadily than the “bumpy, frictional” sound of static. A sound mask will sound pleasant (or at least neutral), insofar as it is noticed at all. But were you to amplify white noise to the same level as an effective sound mask, the result would be an extremely irritating and distracting kind of sound.

Sound masking, instead, blends into the background of the phone call while reducing the distance from which the conversation can be intelligibly heard by “outsiders”.

When considering equipping your business with a modern business phone system, don’t forget to take into account the availability of special features like sound masking. At Atlantic Communications Team, we can install a sound-masking equipped phone system for your business or add this feature to your existing system.

To learn more about the benefits of sound masking and for a free consultation and quote, do not hesitate to contact Atlantic Communications Team today!