However, the figure of 18.8% puts the region second bottom of the work romance league table, in 11th position with the East Midlands bottom on 12%. Less than a tenth in the North East admitted to an affair.
The survey contacted 2,000 UK workers to discover how many have had a romantic encounter or full affair at work, as well as advising on the potential implications of a work romance.
The survey found that one in four people nationally, 24.4%, admitted to a romantic encounter at work, with 27.6% of the total figure being male and 21.5% female.
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Of those admitting to an ‘encounter’, 29.1% were between the ages of 45 and 54, which was more than any other age group. A total of 14.8% of respondents admitted to having a romantic encounter at a work party or similar event.
More seriously, the survey revealed that 13% of people admitted to having had an affair with a colleague, with 14.3% being male and 11.2% being female.
Of those, 17.9% of those admitting to have an affair at work were aged between 55-64, followed by those aged 18 to 24 on 16.2%.
While the East Midlands was bottom of the ‘encounters’ league, they tipped the affairs admission league with a whopping 22.7%. However, in Northern Ireland 0% admitted to affairs.
The North East was 10th from 12 in the affairs league with 8.3% admitting to it. Top of the ‘encounters’ table on 34.% was the West Midlands.
The survey was carried out by a law firm (genuinely) called Wright Hassall. Interestingly the firm is based in Leamington Spa – in the West Midlands.
Employees having relationships can cause difficulties for business owners, especially in smaller businesses without large HR and legal departments.
Office romances can have implications on productivity and not just for the people involved, but for the wider staff too, as rumours and gossip spread, leading to wasted time and potentially complaints of favouritism being shown too.
Employees cannot be legally stopped from starting a relationship under the Human Rights Act (HRA) 1998.