Companies offering policies friendly to working mothers make a positive impact on the lives of their female employees and their families. These happier employees lead to more productive outcomes in the office. These companies also benefit from a wider selection of qualified candidates to choose from and better retention. As a result, maternity benefits, from nursing rooms to paid time off, continue to increase at the best companies to work for as they compete for talent. The Working Mother 100 Best Companies list, which details the best companies for working mothers, provides insights on policies and perks that make mom-friendly workplaces.
Now in its 32nd year, Working Mother surveyed hundreds of companies with more than 400 questions on topics including their paid time off and leave policies, workforce profile, benefits, mentorship programs, flexibility policies, and company culture. With the winners representing about two million employees across more than 28,000 worksites, the reach of mom-friendly benefits continues to expand.
The winners had several benefits in common. Every winning company offers fully paid maternity leave, and the majority of them offer flextime and mentoring programs. Below are details on these common benefits that are becoming must haves for attracting and retaining the best female candidates.
Overall, the top-100 companies offer mothers an average 10 weeks paid time off to welcome a new child. This is in addition to the four weeks expecting fathers receive. To make the top ten, leave benefits had to be more generous. The top ten companies offered 15 weeks to mothers and nine to fathers.
Another facet of parental leave that Subha Barry, Vice President of Working Mother, foresees being embraced more heartily by companies is that of phase-back programs, which allows new mothers to work part-time for full pay after their maternity leave has expired. It’s a perk offered by 86 of the 100 companies on the Working Mother list and all of those in the top ten. “That’s when you engender loyalty,” says Barry. “When you look at where the companies are starting to lose their working moms, it’s usually after the birth of the second child.”
This one is a must for many working parents. Luckily, most companies already offer some form of flexible work schedules. If you want more information on how to implement flextime (and what it exactly is) check out Werk, a website that helps C-level women find flexible work. Werk outlines the six types of workplace flexibility here.
Mentoring Programs For Women
Pairing employees with a mentor in upper management pays off for the employee and the organization. Sponsorship, which is advocating for the professional advancement of a colleague, also reaps benefits for employers and helps foster equality within management. A Harvard Business Review article on how “women may be over-mentored but under-sponsored” provides great insights on the problem and why employers should address it.
This post was written by Wellable guest blogger, Jessica Munroe of Bump Boxes. Personalized employee perks such as pregnancy and parenting gifts by Bump Boxes have been proven to help employees on maternity leave feel connected to their manager and team. Thoughtful maternity leave gifts also help spark communication between a woman on leave and her manager. Every maternity and new parent gift includes carefully vetted products that pamper moms and help care for their baby. Bump Boxes can also include vouchers for free mental health counseling (a plus for new moms with the rise in post-partum depression) and parent coaching. Bump Boxes can also include the employer’s information and maternity leave policies in their gift boxes too.