Research/studies Workplace exposures

Employers and workers differ on workplace noise levels: survey

Pomona, CA – Workers and employers have different perceptions of noise levels in their workplaces, according to the results of a new survey.

Conducted by Wakefield Research and Source Media, on behalf of EPIC Hearing Healthcare, the survey involved 1,500 full-time workers and nearly 500 benefits professionals in December.

About 80 percent of employers said their workplace is hardly ever noisy. In contrast, only 46 percent of workers said the same thing. “Noisy” was defined as loud enough for a person to have to raise his or her voice to be heard.

Fifty-five percent of employees said their workplaces are noisy for at least an hour a day, compared with 19.2 percent of employers. And 36 percent of workers said their workplaces are noisy for more than three hours a day, compared with 8 percent of employers.

Employees who described their workplace as noisy were more likely to have a diagnosed hearing problem (67 percent) or a suspected hearing problem (58 percent).

Despite their noisy workplaces, fewer than 1 out of 4 employees reported having had their hearing checked in the past two years, according to the survey.