Work Spouses More Valuable Amid Pandemic

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Do you have a colleague who’s a “go-to” friend? Someone you gossip with, confide in, and, when safe, grab a drink with? Then you have a work spouse, and 2020 taught us they are more valuable than ever.

As the year of the pandemic blurred the lines of work and life for so many, one thing remained clear: having a work spouse helped people feel more connected and gave them someone to confide in during an uncertain time. It even provided added workplace productivity.

Pandemic Pushes Platonic Partnerships: Nearly 3 in 10 business professionals (29%) currently have a work spouse, an Office Pulse study of white-collar workers across the US and Canada found.

Do you have a work spouse?

Yes, I currently have one
Yes, I have had one
No, I’ve never had one

What makes a coworking confidante so special now? People with these platonic partnerships are more connected, engaged and productive, qualities in short supply in the wake of the pandemic. 27% of professionals with a work spouse said they feel more connected to their colleagues since the pandemic began. Comparatively, just 11% of all workers feel the same.

Pandemic Productivity: Those with a work spouse also reported feeling more productive since the pandemic began, as 42% said they’re getting more done. That’s higher than those who never had one (33%).

Additionally, in a time when many felt isolated, these work-based friends gave us a sense of companionship when we needed it most. The pandemic increased communication between work spouses: over half (53%) said they talk to them more than they did before the COVID-crisis.

Other insights include:

  • Younger workers (ages 18-34) were slightly more likely to report currently having a work spouse than those over 35 (32% vs. 28%)

  • Nearly 1 in 5 said they lost a work spouse during the pandemic; just 2% gained one

  • 6% are talking to their work spouse more outside of working hours since the pandemic started

While it might not be as easy as a quick coffee run, or sneaking out early for a happy hour, it’s clear that having that special person to ping at work helps us in more ways than one.

About Office Pulse

Office Pulse by Captivate offers marketers timely analysis and insights from a proprietary panel of upscale professionals in the top markets. The Office Pulse panel of more than 8,000 influential consumers and business decision makers includes C-level executives, Millennials, middle management, small business owners, working women and working moms.

About Captivate

Known for its vast network of nearly 12,000 elevator displays located in 1,600 premier office buildings across North America, Captivate connects advertisers with 13 million unique monthly viewers through creative, research-driven and Nielsen-measured advertising and marketing programs. By engaging its viewers with timely news and actionable information that helps balance the personal and professional demands of the workday, Captivate provides advertisers with a highly desirable and difficult-to-reach audience of affluent and influential business professionals. Founded in 1997, Captivate is owned by Generation Partners. For more information, please visit