Workplace Dating Policies Every Business Needs to Handle Office Romance

eSuite | Workplace Dating Policies Every Business Needs to Handle Office Romance
In 2019, a survey by Vault.com revealed that 58% of employees have engaged in a romantic relationship with a coworker,  according to Forbes.com. Workplace relationships happen often, and they always seem harmless.
However, office romances can turn into a nightmare and cause problems for the HR and other employees when couples show signs of favouritism, or if the relationship involves a manager and subordinate. For this reason, organizations must have workplace dating policies to make office romance manageable as well as build a happy and productive workforce

Consensual Romance Contracts 

A consensual romance agreement or love contract provides information about acceptable behaviour to ensure office romance between coworkers won’t affect other employers. For example, when coworkers publicly display their affection, such as calling each other pet names, other employees might see it as favouritism. But when employees engaged in an office romance sign a love contract, maintaining ethical conduct becomes easy. 
Consensual romance agreements remind employees that there is a time for everything and better ways to give compliments to a man or woman they feel attracted to. Also, a consensual romance contract confirms that the relationship is voluntary. It educates parties about sexual harassment policy and how to report harassment complaints. 

Notification Policy

Maintaining a no-dating policy is one of the best ways to manage office romance. It can be challenging, as it does not define the behaviour that employees should maintain in the office. That is why employers prefer implementing a notification policy. With this policy in place, employees must notify their managers that they have entered a consensual relationship.
A notification policy will protect your company against legal claims that the relationship was not consensual and involved sexual harassment should the two lovers split. Additionally, employees must report the end of their relationship. This will not only help prevent harassment claims but also avoid conflicts.  

Anti-Nepotism Policies

Many employers opt for anti-nepotism policy to manage office relationships and maintain impartiality within the workplace. An anti-nepotism policy bars employees from directing or supervising colleagues they are dating to avoid favouritism. Without such a policy, firing an incompetent worker who’s dating the manager can be difficult.
Other reasons employers implement anti-nepotism policies include preventing a conflict of interests, improving employee job satisfaction, and reducing the risk of discrimination claims.  Office romances lead to accusations of favouritism, harassment, and poor judgment. Managers are also cautious about decreased 

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