As Election Day approaches, political talk in the office increases, survey shows

Discussions are reportedly also more volatile than in previous years

Posted October 31, 2016

The workplace is not immune from the rising volume of rhetoric from the presidential campaigns.

After a May survey from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) found that political volatility was affecting some workplaces, SHRM repeated survey questions in October to determine whether 2016 campaigns continue to have an impact.

SHRM surveyed randomly selected HR professionals across the country.

The survey found that:

  • 52 percent of organizations reported greater political volatility during the 2016 presidential election than in previous election years.
  • Since May, the percentage of organizations experiencing greater political volatility in the workplace doubled from 26 percent to 52 percent.

HR professionals were asked how they would describe the increase in political volatility in your workplace. Respondents said:

  • 70 percent of employees are more concerned regarding the candidates than in previous election years.
  • 60 percent of employees are more vocal about their opinions (e.g., more discussions and arguments).
  • 55 percent of employees feel that candidates are more polarizing than in previous years.
  • 5 percent of employees have violated organization policies regarding political activities.

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