"We were just the people who used to share lunch all the time," she said in a separate phone interview.
Shortly after getting married four years ago, Ramaswamy and her husband landed work with the same tech company in Canada, where sharing a commute, coffee and lunch breaks helped make the job more enjoyable, she said.
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"Most people spend more time at work than they do at home," said Deborah Muller, CEO of HR technology firm HR Acuity. "It becomes a very social thing. … For the younger generation, that's their group, that's where they meet."
People who have gone on to marry co-workers say other colleagues respond positively.
"It was actually very well accepted," said Jessica Wyatt, a San Antonio resident who met her husband when they shared a cubicle wall while working in sales at a technology company.
Wyatt, who celebrates her second anniversary in April, says they kept their relationship so low-key that many colleagues didn't realize they were dating until after they got married, a decision she said was more about personal preference than professional pressure.
"We're both kind of private people," she said. "It's not necessarily like we went out of our way to keep things hidden. People who knew us knew we were dating." She also said the company's liberal work-from-home policy meant that fewer co-workers noticed them spending coffee and lunch breaks together.
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CareerBuilder found that 36 percent of workers in a relationship with a colleague had to keep the relationship secret. When the jobs site first asked that question in a survey a decade ago, 46 percent of respondents said they hid romantic relationships with co-workers.
"Workplaces in general are becoming a lot more flexible," Mary Lorenz, CareerBuilder spokeswoman, said via email.
HR experts tend to agree that relationships between underlings and bosses are a potential minefield of performance issues and litigation. Amanda Alderman, COO at a consulting and training company, said it was awkward having to let go an employee who was seriously involved with someone much higher up the corporate ladder, albeit not their direct supervisor.
"It was a little difficult," she said "I think, honestly, the reason why she wasn't let go earlier is because she was dating him."
But Alderman acknowledges the difficulty of trying to regulate workers' affections, especially because she met her husband of five years on the job.
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"I think that if you work nine hours a day with somebody, you spend more time with them than you do with anyone else, so I think it's natural for people to be attracted to each other and start dating," she said. "I just don't think you can tell people how to feel about other people," she said.
HR comes around
More HR pros are coming around to the idea that a less-is-more attitude is better when it comes to policies.
"When companies empower their employees and trust them to make these decisions, it helps build this trust, it builds morale, it builds culture," Eisenhauer said.