In order to attract and retain top talent, companies are having to get creative with their employee benefits.
One trend that we're seeing is that more companies are announcing new parental leave options. We live in the only industrialized country that does not specify how paid maternity leave should be handled. Instead, this is left for employers to decide.
Many companies are choosing to be more generous with their leave for new mothers and fathers. Here are 4 creative ways that your company can embrace parental leave options:
1. Offer parental leave to fathers.
Historically, the option to take parental leave was typically only offered to new mothers that gave birth. However, a new trend that is quickly gaining popularity is for employers to offer all new parents--including dads and adoptive parents--time off upon the arrival of a new child.
While this parental leave may not be as long as it is for mothers that just gave birth, it's a benefit that is much appreciated and is effective in creating more satisfied employees.
2. Use parental leave as a competitive edge.
In an effort to court the best talent in today's competitive job market, we're seeing a number of companies lead with employee benefits in the recruiting process. Certainly, a way to differentiate your company is to highlight your unique parental leave benefits.
For example, Ernst and Young recently announced that they will be offering up to 16 weeks of paid leave for new moms and dads. Considering that this parental leave benefit blows most of EY's competition out of the water, the company is choosing to promote themselves as a sector leader in parental benefits.
3. Determine the optimal paid parental leave solution for your company.
While offering paid parental leave as a benefit to attract and retain talent may sound like a good idea to employers, it's important to first calculate the potential costs. For example, if your employees are on a salary, you've already accounted for the cost of paid leave in payroll.
You can also review how long your employees have historically taken parental leave and how frequently you have had employees on leave to help provide you with a baseline for projecting this cost.
4. Encourage your employees to take advantage of their parental leave benefits.
If you're leading with employee benefits to attract talent and are discussing parental leave, be sure to share the leave that your employees are actually taking. This will demonstrate that you actually encourage new parents to take advantage of this benefit and that you're a transparent organization.
There's certainly no "one size fits all" solution for offering parental leave benefits. Please contact us at Summerlin-Roberts to help you determine the optimal parental leave package for your organization.