Not all office romances end as awkward moments at the water cooler. In fact, more than a third end in a walk down the aisle.
That's the finding of a new study on workplace romance by CareerBuilder, whichrevealed that more than 30 percent of those who had a relationship with a coworker ended up getting married to their coworker.
Overall, 38 percent of workers said they dated a coworker at least once over the course of their career, with 17 percent having done it twice.
Despite being considered taboo in most organizations, nearly 20 percent of those surveyed admitted to dating their direct supervisor, while 28 percent said they have dated someone higher up in the company's hierarchy.
The study found that social settings, including happy hours, lunches, late nights at the office and even running into each other outside of work were among the most popular catalysts for dating a colleague.
Some industries are more prone to having dating coworkers, the research revealed. Hospitality, financial services, transportation, utilities, information, technology and healthcare lead the way.
While some companies have open dating policies, the survey shows 37 percent of workers were forced to hide their coworker relationship from their employer.
Whether you're dating someone higher up or a colleague at the same level, office romances are always tricky, according to Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder.
"First and foremost, it is important to know your company's office dating policy," Haefner said. "Remember to stay professional and draw a boundary line between your personal life and the workplace."
The annual study was based on surveys of 7,780 U.S. full-time employees.
Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based freelance writer who spent 10 years working as a newspaper reporter before working in public relations. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @cbrooks76.