Office workers tend to make the majority of their friends at work, according to the results of a new study.
Research conducted by telecoms firm O2 found that the office has taken over from school, university and family as the most likely place to make friendships.
The poll indicated that longer hours and office team-building exercises have led to people spending more time with their employees.
And many co-workers are seemingly forming friendships which stand the test of time.
Almost a third of those polled said they have made most of their friends through the workplace.
Another one in four were from school (23 per cent), and one in ten through university or another form of higher education.
David Johnson, of O2, said: “The workplace is where we spend a lot of our time, so it’s bound to be the place that large numbers of friendships are made.
“But we know our colleagues as well as, and in some cases better than, friends made in other parts of our lives.”
He claimed that the use of mobile technology in the workplace has also contributed to this closeness.
Mr Johnson noted that mobile numbers are often shared meaning phones are used for personal banter, and this is helping to forge friendlier relationships.
From an employer’s perspective, this is likely to be a positive development.
If workers are happy in the office because they enjoy the company of their colleagues, they are more likely to stay engaged and motivated.
This can help make them a more productive member of staff for the long term, and less of an attrition risk.