Employers and employees not on the same page about noise at work

SURVEY

© Y. Arcurs/Fotolia.com

New research sponsored by EPIC Hearing Healthcare has shown that employers and employees have very different perceptions about workplace noise.

The research involved a national survey of 1,500 full-time employees in the United States, and their employers, who were asked how many hours a day they believe their workplace is noisy, in other words, loud enough that they you would have to raise their voice to be heard.

More than half of the respondents (55%) said that their work environment was noisy for more than one hour a day, and more than a third (36%) believed that it was noisy for more than three hours a day. 9% even said it was noisy for five to six hours a day (versus only 2% in this category for employers). Nearly half of employees were concerned that the noise may be affecting their hearing and more than half said it was a relief to get a break from the noise. In contrast to employees’ perceptions, nearly 80% of employers said that the place of employment is hardly ever noisy.

“This suggests that employers may be underestimating the noise levels faced by employees, which could have serious consequences, given that noise exposure is the most common and preventable contributor to hearing loss,” said Brad Volkmer, president and CEO of EPIC Hearing Healthcare.

Interestingly, EPIC’s survey showed that less than 1 in 4 employees had their hearing checked in the past two years, despite their concerns about noise at work. Also, 44% said that they would be concerned if their employer knew or suspected they had hearing loss.

Source: insurancenewsnet.com

C.S.