Not so secret Santa
By Fusion Lifestyle Reporter
December 12, 2013, 4:05 pm

The traditional office ‘Secret Santa’ is anything but anonymous.

More than a third of workers in the North West admit to revealing their identity because they want the credit for the gift they have bought, research reveals

The study by The Co-operative Pharmacy found one in five in the region admitted to over spending in an effort to woo a colleague while one in six workers failed to keep their identity a secret because they had bought a great gift or been more generous than the set spending limit.

Across the UK, half of those who would splash out on a gift for their secret crush would own up to buying the gift rather than admit they have feelings for them.

However, almost one in five workers in the North West confessed to wanting to steer clear of the office festivities and avoid the office secret Santa altogether. 

Not all the region’s workers see it as the time “for peace and good will toward all” with one in seven buying an item they purposely knew the recipient would hate.

Nationally, one in 20 would own up to having bought a gift for the boss but one in three said that being the person who had to buy an item for the boss was the worst luck of the draw, followed by the person they least liked at work.

Over four fifths of businesses set a price limit for their office gift buying. The most common limit was £10 and a third keep the cost down to £5.

Two in five stick to their guns and won’t go a penny over budget, no matter who they are buying for, and a fifth of thrifty workers admit they always try to spend less than the set amount.


Half of workers even admit to feeling under pressure to buy their secret Santa gift, although, the pressure may be self inflicted with one in two desperate to find something funny and a quarter looking for something Christmassy.


Caroline Linger, Healthcare and Beauty Retail Category Manager at The Co-operative Pharmacy, said: “It’s that time of year again as teams of workers up and down the country are gearing up for their office festivities and many scour the shops for their secret Santa gift.

“According to our research, employees who disclose their secret Santa identity are actually revealing far more about their character than they think. So if you want to avoid revealing your inner-most thoughts, keep secret Santa a secret!”