Meet the team behind the winning Moodsonic submission in the Return to Office category. Check out the full submission below!
- Evan Benway – Manager Director, Moodsonic / Sound Concept Advisor, International WELL Building Institute
- Tim Bright – Director, Corporate Real Estate, Elevance Health
- Antonio Nardi – Director of Product, Moodsonic
- Sid Wells – Director of Technical Solutions, Moodsonic
- Fran Board – Marketing Director, Moodsonic
We connected with the Moodsonic team to see how their submission has evolved since entering the competition.
“The sound of our buildings is intrinsically linked to people’s quality of life and the quality of their sensory experiences indoors.
Over the past few months, Moodsonic has continued to install healthy, dynamic soundscapes in workspaces for clients such as JLL, SAP and multiple Fortune 50 technology companies.
We’re also partnering with other organisations and research institutions to further develop our technology and understanding of neurodiverse responses to sound.”
Check out the slideshow, summary, and video of the submission below:
Moodsonic worked with Elevance Health, formerly Anthem, a Fortune 50 healthcare company, to implement a sensory, experiential return to office strategy.
Moodsonic addresses a pervasive problem: sound is often the biggest complaint about workplaces. It affects employees’ ability to concentrate, to be productive, creative, and generally feel well. And it continues to be a big issue in workplaces post-pandemic.
While working from home, many employees realised just how poorly their offices perform on a sensory level. Unlike before the pandemic, they can now choose to stay away.
This project aimed to use sound to create inviting sensory experiences across Elevance’s fourteen-storey Atlanta workplace that would improve wellbeing and performance, give employees control and ultimately offer quality experiences that surpass WFH.
Historical approaches to problematic workplace sound have been negative; reduce the volume here, eliminate noise there. Moodsonic is a positive tool that uses science and technology to optimize the soundscape indoors.
Moodsonic is biophilic design for the ears. Research shows that biophilic soundscapes can reduce the distracting impact of noise and promote focus even better than silence. They can decrease symptoms of stress, like tension and heart-rate. They can improve feelings of happiness, safety and security. They can encourage creative thinking. And just like lighting, they can even cue our bodies’ circadian rhythms.
The soundscapes are generated using algorithms that mirror the organicness of natural environments. And, as the indoor environment changes, the soundscapes can respond in real-time based on sensors.
Moodsonic began working with Elevance Health pre-pandemic. We initially implemented a strategy across their workplace which prioritized better focussed work.
Then, in response to the pandemic, Elevance overhauled their workplace, moving to a hybrid model. Collaboration, connection and flexibility took center stage at the office.
Despite the big strategic changes, the soundscapes were easily reconfigured from zone to zone. A mix of more varied soundscapes, particularly those designed for ideation, were seamlessly introduced to support the needs and distinguish the functionality of each space.
“Our midtown Atlanta campus now has hundreds of audio zones with soundscapes dedicated for collaboration, focused work, small team activities, relaxation and social activities. This gives our associates the freedom to move between different environments with differing multi-sensory zoning to find the space that’s best for them at any given time,” explained Tim Bright, Director, Information Technology Strategy and Planning, Elevance Health.
The soundscapes’ characteristics vary across zones and time of day to support different types of people, working styles and activities. Employees can either navigate intuitively to a space that supports them or use a dedicated web application to find out about the options available to them.
“We aimed to create a refined, energetic, welcoming, and restorative workplace that supports the intentionality behind why and how employees use our office space,” said Tim. “Employees have commented on how the space supports both collaborative and focused work, as well as how welcoming and restorative the office now is.”
The initiative has been so successful that Elevance is rolling it out across their most high-profile offices.
Here’s what our jurors had to say about the Moodsonic submission:
- “I like this form of ambient soundscapes over white or pink noise.”
- “I get excited about this ability to subtly change behavior.”
- “Anything that helps to support background noise to clarity in a conversation is super important.”
- “This is a huge issue in most workplaces today and white noise gives people headaches. So natural sounds are really the best solution and there’s very limited products available in the market. So this is a big win.”