Accounting isn’t known as a particularly sexy industry. And perhaps underscoring this lack of sex appeal, accounting was found to be the industry with the fewest office romances, according to results of Vault’s 2013 Office Romance Survey.
In fact, only 36 percent of accountants who took the survey reported having had a tryst with a coworker. Compare that to the industries with the most office romances: energy (75 percent say they’ve had an office romance), insurance (72 percent), retail (70 percent), and healthcare (63 percent). Overall, 56 percent of all employees across all industries say they’ve had an office romance.
Of the 36 percent accountants to which busy season takes on a new meaning, 15 percent say they’ve randomly hooked up with a coworker, 12 percent say they’ve had a casual fling, 9 percent say they've had a long-term relationship with a coworker, and 6 percent say they met their spouse at work (3 percent ticked the “other” column).
Perhaps a reason why accountants are getting less busy than professionals in other industries has to do with company policies preventing it. That is, accounting is among the top three industries when it comes to having office policies about office romance—37 percent of accountants who took the survey say their firms have specific policies against sexual relationships with coworkers. The only industries with more policies than accounting were insurance (39 percent) and hospitality and tourism (47 percent).
However, at least one accountant says at his firm, a very collegiate culture is promoted. He explains, “As long as the one party isn’t a direct superior or performs performance evaluations of the other, it’s okay. It’s practically encouraged.”
Despite the lack of romance going on at accounting firms, there are some clandestine affairs occurring. According to the survey, one in four accountants knows a married colleague who’s had an affair with a coworker. And one in seven knows a married or seriously involved colleague who’s had a tryst with a coworker while on a business trip. Which leads me to believe that, perhaps, accounting isn’t so unsexy after all.
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2013 Vault Office Romance Survey