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Shrm workplace-romance-findings update Shrm workplace-romance-findings update Presentation Transcript

  • SHRM Survey Findings: Workplace Romance September 24, 2013
  • Key Findings • How common is workplace romance? One out of four (24%) employees reported they have been or are currently involved in a workplace romance. Forty-three percent of HR professionals reported current incidences of workplace romance at their organizations. • Do organizations have a policy that addresses workplace romance? Overall, more than onehalf (54%) of organizations do not have a written or verbal policy that addresses workplace romance. However, in 2013, an increasing number of organizations (42%) indicated having a written or verbal policy compared with 2005 (25%). • What types of workplace romance are not permitted? Among organizations that have workplace romance policies, almost all (99%) indicated that romance between a supervisor and a direct report is not permitted, followed by romance between employees of a significant rank difference (45%) and between employees who report to the same supervisor (35%). Consequences for breaking an organization’s workplace romance policy vary depending on the type of workplace romance and the rank of employees. • What consequences have been applied to employees involved in a workplace romance? The most frequently reported consequence was a transfer of an employee involved in a workplace romance to another department (34%) and counseling (32%). Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 2
  • Key Findings • Why is workplace romance not permitted? When it comes to workplace romance, organizations are primarily concerned about real or perceived favoritism (84%), potential for claims of sexual harassment (78%), and potential for retaliation (72%). » Concerns about potential retaliation increased from 50% in 2005 to 72% in 2013. Concerns about lowered productivity and about workplace romances being viewed as unprofessional decreased from 52% and 58% in 2005 to 29% and 29% in 2013. » In the past five years, 40% of organizations have received complaints of favoritism from coworkers of those involved in a workplace romance; nearly one-fourth (23%) have received claims of sexual harassment, and 22% have received complaints of retaliation. • How is workplace romance revealed, and which departments are responsible for taking action? Suspicions about workplace romance are generally revealed through office gossip (67%) or through reports to the HR department (61%). Vast majority of organizations (89%) indicated that the HR department is responsible for taking action when such suspicion or complaint comes to light. • What are HR professionals’ opinions about “love contracts”*? Only 5% of organizations ask employees involved in a workplace romance to sign a “love contract.”* Although the majority (81%) of HR professionals agree that love contracts can provide a forum for them to talk to employees about appropriate and inappropriate workplace behavior, 75% view them as ineffective because employees may be more likely to hide their romantic relationships. *In this survey, a “love contract” refers to a document affirming that a workplace romantic relationship is consensual, that employees involved will not engage in favoritism, and that neither will take any legal action against the employer or each other if the relationship ends. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 3
  • What do these findings mean for the HR profession? • With workplace romance on the rise, HR professionals may need to prepare for more issues related to managing its impact. For many organizations, the first step is to draft a written policy; more organizations in 2013 have a written or verbal policy on workplace romance compared with 2005 (42% in 2013 versus 25% in 2005). • In some cases, HR professionals may need to work with their risk management and/or legal team colleagues to identify risks involved with workplace romance. The consequences can include damage to office morale as well as legal claims that result from the relationship in question. Depending on the business, these risks will influence any written policies. • Currently, most HR professionals deem a “love contract”—a document that affirms the relationship and is signed by the couple involved in a workplace romance—as ineffective and say that it actually encourages workers to hide the relationship from peers. But this approach may be revisited if the impact of workplace romance is seen as too damaging. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 4
  • Incidence of Workplace Romance Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 5
  • Incidence of workplace romance HR professionals: Are you aware of any current incidences of workplace romance at your organization? Employees: Have you ever been or are you currently involved in a workplace romance? I have been involved before 21% Yes 43% No 57% I am currently involved 3% No 76% n = 405 Note: n = 5,004 U.S. employees. Employee data were collected from the 2013 Employee Job Satisfaction and Engagement Survey. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 6
  • In your opinion as an HR professional, have incidences of workplace romance at your organization increased, stayed the same or decreased in the past five years? Increased 12% Stayed the same Decreased 67% 21% n = 299 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 7
  • Which of the following types of workplace romance are most common at your organization? Between employees in different departments 53% Between employees of the same rank 32% Between employees who are in the same department but report to different supervisors 18% Between employees when one or both have significant others 16% Between employees who report to the same supervisor 12% Between a supervisor and a direct report 8% Between employees of a significant rank difference 8% Note: n = 522. Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. Respondents were allowed to select up to three responses for this question. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 8
  • Which of the following types of workplace romance are most common at your organization? (continued) Between employees who work on the same projects 8% Between an employee and a client/customer Between an employee and a vendor Between an employee of your organization and an employee from a competitor organization Other *No workplace romance was observed 7% 5% 3% 4% 7% Note: n = 522. Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. An asterisk (*) indicates that this response option was developed from open-ended responses. Respondents were allowed to select up to three responses for this question. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 9
  • Policies on Workplace Romance Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 10
  • Does your organization have a policy that addresses workplace romance? 36% A written policy 18% 6% A verbal policy 2013 (n = 555) 7% 2005 (n = 491) 54% No written or verbal policy 72% Don’t know 5% 2% Note: Percentages may not equal 100% due to rounding. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 11
  • Which of the following types of workplace romance are not permitted at your organization? Types of workplace romance 2013 (n = 209) 2005 (n = 127) 2001 (n = 78) Between a supervisor and a direct report 99% 80% 64% Between employees of a significant rank difference 45% 16% 12% Between employees who report to the same supervisor 35% 13% 15% Between an employee and a client/customer 31% 13% 18% Between employees who work on the same projects 25% 6% 12% Between employees who work in the same department but report to different supervisors 22% 24% 31% Between an employee and a vendor 21% 4% 6% Between employees in different departments 12% * * Between an employee of our organization and an employee from a competitor organization 11% 4% 4% Note: Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. Respondents whose organizations do not have written or verbal policies on workplace romance were excluded from this analysis. An asterisk (*) indicates that this response option was only provided in the 2013 survey. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 12
  • What consequences do employees face when a supervisor and his or her direct report break your organization’s policy and are involved in a workplace romance? 48% Counseling 41% 44% A formal written reprimand 29% 41% Termination 22% 40% A transfer to another department within the organization 51% 29% *Removal from supervisory position Supervisor (n = 281) 26% A move to another position within the department Suspension There are no official consequences Direct report (n = 265) 39% 23% 12% 22% 24% Note: Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. An asterisk (*) indicates that this response option was only provided in relation to supervisors. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 13
  • What consequences do employees face when those of a significant rank difference break your organization’s policy and are involved in a workplace romance? 56% A formal written reprimand 36% 48% Counseling 42% 47% Termination Suspension 22% 32% 16% 28% A transfer to another department within the organization 45% 25% A move to another position within the department *Demotion There are no official consequences 33% Higher-ranking employee (n = 104) Lower-ranking employee (n = 92) 14% 17% 24% Note: Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. An asterisk (*) indicates that this response option was only provided in relation to higher-ranking employees. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 14
  • What consequences do employees face when those who report to the same supervisor break your organization’s policy and are involved in a workplace romance? A transfer to another department within the organization 56% A formal written reprimand 34% Counseling 33% Termination 20% Suspension Other 18% 5% There are no official consequences 27% Note: n = 98. Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 15
  • In the past five years, which of the following consequences have been applied to any of the employees involved in a workplace romance? Consequences 2013 (n = 343) 2005 (n = 134) 2001 (n = 108) A transfer to another department within the organization 34% 42% 55% Counseling 32% 34% 30% A formal written reprimand 21% 36% 31% Termination 20% 27% 35% A move to another position within the department 20% * * A removal from a supervisory position 12% 7% 7% Suspension 8% * * Other 6% 18% 11% None of the above 34% * * Note: Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. An asterisk (*) indicates that this response option was only included in the 2013 survey. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 16
  • Generally, how did employees involved in the romance react to the consequences? They accepted the decision 80% They did not accept the decision and left the organization 8% They did not accept the decision and took legal action against the organization 3% They did not accept the decision and appealed it 2% Other 7% n = 219 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 17
  • Generally, how are suspicions or complaints about workplace romance revealed at your organization? Through gossip in the office 67% Reported to the HR department 61% Reported to the supervisor of those involved in the romance 33% Reported anonymously (e.g., through organization's ethics hotline) 25% Reported to the leader of the business unit under which the romance occurred Reported to the internal/external legal counsel Other 23% 3% 4% n = 392 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 18
  • If there is a suspicion or a complaint about a workplace romance between employees at your organization, who is responsible for taking action? HR department 89% Supervisor of those involved in the romance 39% Leader of the business unit under which the romance occurred Internal legal counsel 24% 8% External legal counsel 5% Other 4% n = 411 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 19
  • If there is a suspicion or a complaint about a possible workplace romance between employees at your organization, what measures are taken? 73% Talk to employees involved 58% Talk to the supervisor/leader of those involved in the romance 60% 45% 45% 47% Look for problematic behavior Monitor conflict among co-workers 32% 31% Monitor productivity of employees 28% 33% Talk to co-workers of those involved in the romance 23% 19% Monitor correspondence between suspected employees (e.g., e-mails, texts) Support the relationship (e.g., allow common vacations) Nothing/no measures taken 18% 13% Supervisor-direct report romance (n = 350) Other types of romance (n = 296) 7% 21% 16% 25% Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 20
  • Does your organization offer training to employees on how to manage workplace romance? Yes, for all employees Yes, for managers only No 10% 8% 81% Note: n = 389. Percentages may not equal 100% due to rounding. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 21
  • HR Opinions About Workplace Romance Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 22
  • Why is workplace romance not permitted at your organization? 84% *Concerns about real or perceived favoritism by co-workers of those involved in the romance 78% Potential for claims of sexual harassment 77% 72% Potential for retaliation if the romance ends 50% 57% *Potential for legal action taken against the organization 2013 (n = 312) 2005 (n = 103) 56% *Potential for inappropriate sharing of confidential information between those involved in the romance 47% *Concerns about gossip/distraction among co-workers Concerns about lowered morale of co-workers of those involved in the romance 30% 44% Note: Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. An asterisk (*) indicates that this response option was only provided in the 2013 survey. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 23
  • Why is workplace romance not permitted at your organization? (continued) 30% *Concerns about lowered productivity of co-workers of those involved in the romance 29% Concerns about lowered productivity of those involved in the romance 52% 29% Workplace romances are viewed as unprofessional 58% 24% *Concerns about lowered employee engagement of co-workers of those involved in the romance 2013 (n = 312) 2005 (n = 103) 19% *Concerns about public display of affection of those involved in the romance 18% *Damage to organization's public image as a result of exposed romance Other 6% 8% Note: Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. An asterisk (*) indicates that this response option was only provided in the 2013 survey. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 24
  • In the past five years, have any of the following occurred at your organization as a result of a workplace romance between employees? 2013 (n = 327) 2005 (n = 472) 2001 (n = 468) 70% * * 51% 62% 66% 40% 44% 46% Divorce/ending of long-term relationship with significant other 30% * * Decreased productivity by those involved in the romance 24% 26% 41% Claims of sexual harassment 23% 19% 26% Complaints of retaliation when the romance ended 22% 15% 26% 20% * * 18% 25% 24% 17% 16% 19% Gossip/distraction among co-workers Those involved in the romance got married or became long-term partners Complaints of favoritism from co-workers of those involved in the romance Inappropriate sharing of confidential information between those involved in the romance Decreased morale of co-workers of those involved in the romance Complaints of stalking when the romance ended Note: Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. An asterisk (*) indicates that this response option was only provided in the 2013 survey. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 25
  • In the past five years, have any of the following occurred at your organization as a result of a workplace romance between employees? (continued) 2013 (n = 327) 2005 (n = 472) 2001 (n = 468) 15% * * 14% * * 13% * * 6% * * 6% 6% 7% 3% * * 3% * * Increased productivity by those involved in the romance 2% 5% 9% Increase in workplace violence 2% 3% 4% Increased productivity by co-workers of those involved in the romance 1% * * Other 5% 13% 10% Complaints from co-workers of those involved in the romance about public display of affection Decreased productivity by co-workers of those involved in the romance Decreased employee engagement of co-workers of those involved in the romance Legal action was taken against the organization Increased morale of co-workers of those involved in the romance Increased employee engagement of co-workers of those involved in the romance Organization's public image was damaged as a result of exposed romance Note: Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. An asterisk (*) indicates that this response option was only provided in the 2013 survey. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 26
  • In your opinion as an HR professional, should employers have the right to prohibit workplace romance between employees? Yes 32% Depends on the situation 49% No 18% Note: n = 385. Percentages do not equal 100% due to rounding. More than one-half of respondents who selected “depends on the situation” indicated that employers should have the right to prohibit workplace romances between a supervisor and a direct report. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 27
  • In your opinion as an HR professional, which types of workplace romance should be restricted and/or acted upon by organizations? Romance between a supervisor and a direct report 95% Romance between employees of a significant rank difference 54% Romance between an employee and a client/customer 44% Romance between an employee and a vendor 33% Romance between employees in the same department 33% Romance between employees who report to the same supervisor Romance between an employee of our organization and an employee from a competitor organization Romance between employees who work on the same projects Romance between employees who work in the same department but report to different supervisors Romance between employees in different departments Other 30% 24% 23% 17% 8% 4% n = 398 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 28
  • Does your organization ask employees involved in a workplace romance to sign a “love contract”? In this survey, a “love contract” refers to a document affirming that a workplace romantic relationship is consensual, that employees involved will not engage in favoritism, and that neither will take any legal action against the employer or each other if the relationship ends. Yes 5% No 95% n = 371 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 29
  • In your opinion as an HR professional, do you agree with the following statements related to “love contracts”? Love contracts provide a forum to talk to employees about appropriate and inappropriate workplace behavior 81% Love contracts are ineffective because employees may be more likely to hide their romantic relationships 75% Love contracts are effective in protecting the organization against legal action 34% 61% Love contracts are effective in decreasing risk of sexual harassment claims 58% 49% Love contracts are an invasion of employees' privacy Love contracts are not necessary and create additional paperwork Agree 25% 66% Love contracts put HR professionals in an awkward position Love contracts are effective in reducing perceived favoritism by co-workers 19% 46% 41% 39% 42% 51% 54% 59% Disagree n = 290 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 30
  • Demographics Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 31
  • Demographics: Organization Industry Percentage Professional, scientific and technical services 18% Health care and social assistance 16% Manufacturing 15% Government agencies 10% Finance and insurance 10% Educational services 7% Retail trade 7% Transportation and warehousing 7% Information 6% Construction 5% Utilities 4% Note: n = 384. Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 32
  • Demographics: Organization Industry (continued) Percentage Accommodation and food services 3% Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction 3% Religious, grant-making, civic, professional and similar organizations 3% Wholesale trade 3% Repair and maintenance 2% Real estate and rental and leasing 2% Administrative and support and waste management and remediation services 1% Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting 1% Arts, entertainment and recreation 1% Personal and laundry services 1% Other industry 5% Note: n = 384. Percentages do not equal 100% due to multiple response options. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 33
  • Demographics: Organization Sector Privately owned for-profit 52% Nonprofit 22% Publicly owned for-profit 15% Government Other 10% 1% n = 385 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 34
  • Demographics: Organization Staff Size 1 to 99 employees 24% 100 to 499 employees 33% 500 to 2,499 employees 21% 2,500 to 24,999 employees 25,000 or more employees 16% 6% n = 384 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 35
  • Demographics: Other Does your organization have U.S.based operations (business units) only, or does it operate multinationally? U.S.-based operations only Multinational operations 74%% 26% Single-unit organization: An organization in which the location and the organization are one and the same. 31% Multi-unit organization: An organization that has more than one location. 69% n = 400 n = 399 What is the HR department/function for which you responded for throughout this survey? Corporate (companywide) 64% Business unit/division 15% Facility/location 21% n = 285 Is your organization a single-unit organization or a multi-unit organization? For multi-unit organizations, are HR policies and practices determined by the multi-unit headquarters, by each work location or by both? Multi-unit headquarters determines HR policies and practices 54% Each work location determines HR policies and practices 2% A combination of both the work location and the multi-unit headquarters determines HR policies and practices 44% n = 283 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 36
  • SHRM Survey Findings: 2013 Workplace Romance Survey Methodology • Response rate = 13% • 384 HR professionals from a randomly selected sample of SHRM’s membership participated in this survey • Margin of error +/- 5% • Survey fielded July 9-26, 2013 Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 37
  • About SHRM Research For more survey/poll findings, visit shrm.org/surveys For more information about SHRM’s Customized Research Services, visit shrm.org/customizedresearch Follow us on Twitter @SHRM_Research Project leader: Yan Dong, research intern, SHRM Research Project contributors: Alexander Alonso, Ph.D., SPHR, vice president, SHRM Research Evren Esen, manager, Survey Research Center, SHRM Research Copy editor: Katya Scanlan, SHRM Knowledge Center Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 38
  • About SHRM The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest association devoted to human resource management. Representing more than 260,000 members in over 140 countries, the Society serves the needs of HR professionals and advances the interests of the HR profession. Founded in 1948, SHRM has more than 575 affiliated chapters within the United States and subsidiary offices in China and India. Workplace Romance Survey ©SHRM 2013 39