With growing awareness of employees' need to work flexibly, especially when welcoming a baby into their lives, more firms are beginning to adapt to the needs of their workforce.
One firm trailblazing this move to accommodate working parents is IKEA US, who have said that they will expand paid parental leave to up to four months for their employees.
Employees with three or more years at IKEA will be eligible to take four months of paid leave, receiving their entire base wage for the first eight weeks and half of that for an additional eight weeks – USA Today reports.
Workers of a longer tenure can take up to three months of paid leave, receiving their entire base wage for the first six weeks and 50% for an extra six weeks, in addition to the six to eight weeks of short-term disability the US currently offers.
It’s not just benefiting mothers either; fathers, adoptive and foster parents are also eligible for longer paid leaves.
IKEA said the change aims to improve work-life balance and attract and retain top talent, with the benefits including both salaried and hourly employees. Their President of US Operations, Lars Petersson, explains: "We see it as an investment in our co-workers, which we view as our most important resource.” The company expects to: "get great payback over the years, from the sheer fact of having our people getting even closer to us in terms of loyalty and them staying longer. This is the right thing to do for our people."
The company currently employs around 14,000 employees in the US across 42 stores, and the benefits are due to go into effect as of 1 January 2017.
Read on for more companies who have changed their maternity/paternity policies…