How Love Works

We transformed survey data into stories that spark press coverage, with this sweet interactive on romance in the workplace.


Which workers are most up for dating a colleague? How easy is it to work with the one you love? And what happens if the relationship ends?

For job-hunting experts Totaljobs, we transformed a survey of more than 5,000 UK workers into a compelling B2C digital interactive that would spark media coverage, drive traffic and get people talking about co-worker couples.

We analysed this fascinating data set and built the narrative from the best stories we discovered within it. Like how the leisure and recreation industry had the most people open to dating a colleague. Or how almost no one tells HR about blossoming romances.

Inspired by FiveThirtyEight’s Gun Deaths in America, we included a waffle chart that captured every individual story and presented the data as transparently as possible.

The iconic ‘Love Hearts’ confectionery lent a sweet visual motif and we added a fun workplace twist to the messages: “Firefoxy lady”, “Outlook me up”, “Lose CTRL” to name a few.

From the click-through arrows shaped like hearts (which ‘beat’ when tapped) to the survey’s most amusing reasons for failed romances (“He got a new one”), there were plenty of opportunities to fill this data-driven story with moments of delight.

A proportional area chart showing the different places people meet their partners. Each area is in the shape of a love heart. It shows that the workplace is the most common place, with 22% of people meeting there.
A graphic with a statistic that reads: 'It turns out that 2 in 3 people are up for dating a colleague.' Below this are three love hearts in the shape of the popular candy. Two read 'Be mine'. The third reads 'Call HR.'
A graphic with a statistic that reads: '76% of colleague couples keep their relationship a secret'. Below this, a grid made of love hearts is 76% filled in.'
A screenshot of a scrollytelling graphic from the How Love Works website. It shows that 16% of people from southern england would quit their job if their workplace relationship ended, whereas only 13% of those from the north of the UK would.
Three side-by-side screenshots showing different parts of the scrollytelling charts on the How Love Works website.
A series of love heart graphics in the shape of the candy with the same name. Each contains ways workplace relationships and crushes might end like 'Drifted apart' or 'She found someone else'.

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