• 66% of Brits have had a romantic liaison with a colleague
  • One fifth (22%) of those work romances were with the boss
  • But 59% of workplace relationships led to resignation at work

With Valentine’s Day approaching, new data has revealed that UK workplaces are a breeding ground for romance. According to a new survey from job search engine Adzuna.co.uk two thirds of Brits (66%) have had a romantic relationship with a colleague and over a quarter (28%) of people met their current partner at work.

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Power of attraction, or attraction of power?

The research also showed there is a widespread openness to the idea of dating a colleague, with 75% saying they were open to the possibility and 41% fantasising about doing so. Interestingly, 28% of these fantasies were about someone in a higher position than them. This is reflected in the fact that over a fifth (22%) of people who have dated somebody in the office, have done so with their boss.

For some people, these relationships had benefits other than just romance: 31% of those who have dated someone in the office said it had benefited from it professionally. This national average was dwarfed by the figure in London – where 46% of respondents who have been in a workplace relationship said they benefited from it.

Predictably different age groups started their relationships in different ways. While 18-24 year-olds were the most likely age group to start a relationship on a night out (27%), nearly a third (28%) of over-55s started their relationships by working late in the office.

Romance steps up a gear for the transport industry

The Transport and Logistics industry is on the road to love, claiming the highest amount of workplace relationships, with 84% of respondents within that industry saying that they have had a relationship with a colleague. Wearing their hearts of their sleeves, 81% of Healthcare professionals have had an ‘office’ romance. Of these relationships, 66% of those within Transport and Logistics lasted longer than 6 months, whilst 86% of relationships within the Healthcare industry lasted the same length.

However, home certainly isn’t where the heart is for the real-estate industry, fairing the worst for workplace romances, with just 42% of respondents within that industry claiming to have had romance with a colleague. And it’s money over love for the private equity industry, who have also seen fewer workplace relationships than any other industry.

Don’t get your honey where you earn your money

Despite 57% of people in a workplace relationship staying together for over a year, and a third of workers benefitting professionally, the negative implications are obvious. Near two thirds (59%) of people who dated someone at work eventually resigned from the role as a direct result. A third (33%) resigned because the relationship went sour, but 26% made the ultimate sacrifice, resigning because they felt it was best for their relationship to succeed. To compound this, only 28% of those who have dated colleagues are still in the relationship. It is, therefore, unsurprising that 18% of workplaces ban dating in the workplace.

Andrew Hunter, co-founder of Adzuna comments:

With the traditional office job evolving and fewer people physically in the office from 9 to 5, we were surprised to see just how many people in the UK still find love in the workplace.

What’s also surprising is the level of variation between industries. Whilst a staggering 84% of people who work in Transport and Logistics have had a relationship within the workplace, the David Brents of this world are less likely to find love on the job with only 44% of people in Forest, Paper and Packaging having done so.”

 Whilst 26% of office romances have led to marriage and 27% babies, a larger proportion at 59% have left the company directly as a result – so workplace relationships should certainly be approached with caution.”

Relationship At Work