One out of every three American adults currently are or previously have been in a workplace romance, according to a recent poll released by the Society for Human Resource Management.

However, nearly one-third (28%) of those who has been involved in a workplace romance never disclosed it.

"Because so much of our waking time is spent at work, it's no surprise that romances develop in the workplace," said SHRM president and CEO Johnny Taylor, Jr..

"It makes little sense to forbid them. Instead, employees should be encouraged to disclose relationships.

"This is the most effective way to limit the potential for favoritism, retaliation, and sexual harassment claims."

More Key Findings

For those who did report their romance, most said their company was "neither supportive nor unsupportive" (29%) or was "supportive" (32%).

Those who have never been involved in workplace romances listed these top reasons:

  • I have never been interested in being involved (56%)
  • I am not opposed to it, but have never pursued one (37%)
  • I believe workplace romances are unprofessional (33%)
  • Concerned about employer policies on workplace romance (25%)

Seventeen percent of those who never have been in a workplace romance said they refrained due to concerns of potential sexual harassment claims.

More men than women named this concern as a reason to not participate in workplace romances.