How do you quickly lose your productivity, concentration and – in a worst case scenario – even a sales order? Take an open-plan office, no places to retreat and a noise level of 70 decibels - which is equivalent to the continuous sound of an industrial hoover. But don't worry, there's good news: With office phone booths you cannot only discrease distrations effectively, but you can also increase success in customer calls at the same time. Below, we have compiled the five most important benefits of phone booths for the office.
The telephone box should serve as a place of retreat for employees. Therefore, the box must have sufficient sound insulation - from the outside to the inside and vice versa. Various suppliers like to refer to decibel values with regard to sound insulation in order to emphasize the sound-insulating effect of their products.
Our tip: Test the phone box yourself under real conditions. After all, paper values have no significance in most cases and cannot be compared with each other.
What can be compared, however, is the degree of soundproofing. Many phone boxes reduce noise significantly, but not all phone booths are completely soundproof. Nor do they necessarily have to be. In most cases, you don't need completely soundproof booths to create places of retreat. However, if you attach great importance to this, you should look for a telephone box in the upper price segment.
For ideal acoustics inside the telephone box, the reverberation should be as low as possible. Otherwise, it will be difficult for the person on the other end to hear you. You can find out the best way to test the reverberation here. Otherwise, you can also get a good feel for it with a virtual product demo.
An often underestimated element is the ventilation of the phone box. Here, you should pay particular attention to the performance. Let's assume an average phone box with about two cubic meters of room volume. If the performance of the ventilation is not good enough, headaches and nausea can be the result. At the latest then the door of the telephone booth must be opened - and that's it with the necessary rest for concentrated work.
In order to select the correct telephone box, you should ask in any case for the effective achievement of the ventilation in the discussion with the offerers. Because: Gladly with the so-called rated power one argues. However, this has little significance.
Ideally, you should test the phone box yourself before buying it. You can not only check the air quality inside the box, but also the volume of the ventilation. A higher performance means better air quality - but is often the louder. To make sure that no annoying whirring of the fan causes distraction inside the phone box, you'd better take a seat in it yourself.
The lighting inside the telephone box plays a central role. After all, telephone boxes are particularly popular for virtual calls and meetings. To ensure that employees are optimally illuminated when talking to customers, it is advisable to use a light source from above that optimally illuminates every surface inside the telephone box.
The type of lighting is also important in terms of heat generation. Ideally, your phone box is equipped with LEDs. These emit less heat to the outside than other light sources and do not noticeably increase the room temperature inside the box.
From what materials the phone box is made, varies greatly from supplier to supplier. While a large number of them rely on wood for the frame, there are others whose boxes are made of aluminum, steel or other metal compounds. For ideal soundproofing, both types of materials are well suited. Much greater differences are made by the materials used inside the box. For example, if there are large uncovered glass and wood surfaces, the reverberation will be more noticeable. Acoustic fleece or acoustic foam in combination with fabrics are to be preferred for the interior lining of the telephone box.
As for the material of the door, there are also significant differences. While some rely on acrylic glass, others make their doors from safety or acoustic glass. Acrylic glass doors are lighter and shatter-resistant, while glass doors are more scratch-resistant and UV-resistant. So if the office phone boxes are exposed to sunlight, acrylic glass doors are more prone to unsightly discoloration.
As is generally known, design is a matter of debate. Nevertheless, it plays a central role in the purchase of a telephone box - after all, the telephone box should fit ideally into the office and not look like a foreign body. Before buying, you should therefore ask yourself the question: Which design fits best in my office? If you don't want to commit yourself, a timeless and minimalistic design is recommended. Otherwise, some providers also give you the option of personalizing the phone box to match your brand.
In terms of beauty, it is also always worth taking a look at the roof of the phone booth. In most cases, the electronics are housed there - but not always in combination with a corresponding casing. So if you can look at the roof of the cabin in the office, you should make sure that not everyone passing by can take a look at the tangled cables inside before buying.
Some phone boxes are delivered already assembled by the manufacturer. What sounds like less effort, however, requires good planning: With this type of delivery, you need to make sure that your office building has a freight elevator or can be delivered to the office premises by another means as planned.
Telephone boxes for one person can in many cases be built by yourself. Self-assembly takes about an hour on average, but saves you money. For meeting boxes, however, assembly by specialists is always necessary.
The providers differ considerably in terms of delivery times. If you want to have your phone box delivered as quickly as possible, you should definitely ask about the current delivery times. Even telephone boxes for one person are only delivered in four weeks or less in a few cases.
When choosing your provider, pay attention to the fine print: Will the phone box be delivered to the office? Or will it only be delivered to the curb? With a product weight of up to 500 kilograms for the individual box, you certainly don't want to lug it up to the fifth floor.
The various models on the market differ significantly in terms of price. There is virtually no upper limit here. However, high-quality phone boxes can be found even with a relatively small budget. For example, you can dispense with personalization to save costs.
In addition, phone boxes that are not completely soundproof, but "only" reduce external noise to a minimum, are usually much cheaper. They still serve their purpose. In principle, however, the following applies: No matter what price range you are in - make sure that you test the box thoroughly. This is the only way to ensure that it meets your requirements.
The telephone box should be a real alternative to the employee's own workstation. Employees should feel comfortable in it and be able to work as productively as possible. This means that there must be enough space in the phone box for a laptop, notebook, coffee and so on. When it comes to the desk, you should make sure that it is deeper than 30 cm. Why? An average 13-inch laptop is about 23 cm deep. The table in the phone box should provide enough space for you to place it optimally for a call.
When comparing the different providers, it is always worth taking a look at the power supply. Is there a power outlet or USB ports? This way you can ensure that your employees never run out of juice - even during particularly long meetings.
Aside from the table and power supply, there are numerous other features. Additional light sources, height-adjustable tables or integrations into the company calendar to book the telephone boxes: Here you are offered a lot. What makes sense for you depends on your individual application.
The size of the telephone box is important in some way. Many telephone boxes on the market are higher than two meters and need a certain minimum distance from the ceiling due to the ventilation. If you plan to place the telephone box under the stairs, for example, or if your ceiling height is less than three meters, not every telephone box on the market is suitable for you.
If your office is located in an old building, then it is worth looking at the product weight. With a weight of up to 500 kilograms, a telephone box is about as heavy as seven washing machines. So that you don't suddenly lose the ground beneath your feet, you should therefore trust the expertise of a structural engineer if in doubt.
Also get an overview of possible barriers. Most telephone boxes on the market are not floor-level. So if you are looking for a telephone box that is suitable for a wheelchair, you can already rule out many models. Also because the tables inside are usually mounted at a height that allows you to work while standing.