Elite digital marketing
Author: Abby Chinery published:
Nov 05th 2019
last updated:
Nov 05th 2019
Creative Director: loves creating content, hates talking about herself in the third person.

Workplace Study: Office Romance Statistics for 2019

Reboot Line


Following the revelation that McDonald's has fired chief executive Steve Easterbrook after he had a relationship with an employee, a shocking new study into workplace flings has revealed that 46% of employers state that they would prefer their staff not to date each other.

We surveyed 2,446 participants to dish up the data on dating co-workers. We found for example that at least 48% of us will date a fellow employee at some point in our professional lives – despite nearly half of employers discouraging workplace dating (a figure that has almost doubled since the last study we conducted.)

Employers may not like workplace romance, yet research shows that, much like McDonald’s Easterbrook, 22% of flings actually involve a manager or boss. What’s more, saucy messages and snogging are taking place on the clock – with 41% of first kisses between colleagues happening at work, or at a work event 

Spicing things up even more, 36% of those surveyed admit their office fling was extramarital for at least one participant. It comes as no surprise therefore that over half (57%) were keeping the relationship a secret from their colleagues.

Keeping a co-worker relationship hush-hush is understandable when considering the fact that 4% of employees have lost their job following the discovery of an office romance. Indeed, Easterbrook had a consensual relationship with an employee, and yet was let go due to "violating company policy" and showing "poor judgement".

Full Survey Results: 

Have you dated a co-worker?

YES: 48%
NO: 52%

Are you happy for employees to date?

YES: 16%


NO: 38%

Where did your first kiss take place?

At work: 9%

At a work do: 32%

Elsewhere: 59%

Who was involved in the liaison?

Someone of the same rank: 48%

Someone of higher standing (i.e a manager or boss): 22%

Someone of lower rank: 30%

Was the affair extra-marital?

Yes, I was married: 11%

Yes, they were married: 18%

Yes, we were both married: 7%

No: 64%

Did you hide your relationship from other employees?

YES: 57%

NO: 33%

Did you lose your job as a result of your liaison?

YES: 4%

NO: 96%

Did you or your partner quit due to the relationship?

YES: 21%

NO: 79%


And this isn’t the first time we’ve seen this in the news either, last year Intel boss Brian Krzanich resigned for much the same reason. Due to the difficult nature of employee relationships, Reboot Digital Marketing spoke to their HR Manager, Naomi Aharony:

Naomi Aharony“Workplace romance is unavoidable but can be tricky to handle when issues arise such as wanting time off together, arguments which adversely affect productivity and distractions caused by office gossip.

If a relationship breaks down then this can be very disruptive for a business, especially if two key people are involved. In my experience as a HR manager its best to forward plan in these situations so you are better prepared to deal with any sudden changes that could affect the company or its employees.”


Share This Post
Share this post
Loading Comments...(please enable javascript if comments section doesn't appear)