With a busy week behind you and the weekend within reach, there’s no shame in taking things a bit easy on Friday afternoon. With this in mind, every Friday TriplePundit will give you an easy read on a topic you care about. So, take a break from those endless email threads and spend five minutes catching up on the latest trends in sustainability and business.
The United States remains the only industrialized nation that does not mandate paid family leave for all workers. Thankfully, some companies are beginning to take matters into their own hands -- not only because it's the right thing to do, but also because it makes good business sense.
"When employees are able to take paid leave, they’re less stressed at work and are able to come back feeling refreshed, both of which are good news for employee efficiency and thus the bottom line," Richard Eidlin, vice president of public policy and business engagement for the American Sustainable Business Council, wrote in an op/ed on TriplePundit.
Despite these benefits, only 13 percent of workers in the private sector have access to paid parental leave, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. And by far, most of them are white-collar, salaried workers.
These 10 companies are bucking this trend by offering all employees paid leave to care for a new child or a sick family member. You may notice one thing they all have in common: They're remarkably successful for their industries. Coincidence? You decide.
The online streaming service now available in over 190 countries made waves last year with a surprising announcement: It would extend unlimited family leave to all salaried employees. New moms and dads can take off work indefinitely for the first year after a child's birth or adoption, with the option to return to full- or part-time work and then take leave again as needed.
Hourly workers also receive paid time off following the birth or adoption of a child, albeit not as generous as the company's unlimited policy. Hourly employees in the company's streaming department are eligible for 16 weeks paid maternity or paternity leave. Employees in the DVD department are eligible for 12 weeks, while customer service employees receive 14 weeks.
Not to be outdone by its counterpart in the streaming biz, Spotify announced its own paid family leave upgrade last year. The music streaming company took a page from its Swedish founders' handbook and now offers six months paid family leave to all new parents -- mothers and fathers, hourly and salaried, adopted or birth.
In September, Deloitte launched what it calls the most extensive new family leave policy in the professional services industry. The new policy will allow all male and female employees to take up to 16 weeks of paid time off to care for a family member, such as a new child, a spouse or an aging parent.
Under the new policy, birth mothers are now eligible for up to six months of paid time off when factoring in short-term disability, Fortune reported.
The latest on the family leave bandwagon, Hilton opted to extend its policies last week. Under the new policy, all employees can take up to 10 weeks of fully paid leave following the birth or adoption of a child, NPR reported.
While lower-wage, hourly workers are often left out of paid leave, Hilton went full-boar and extended its policies to all 40,000 team members -- from cooks and housekeepers to corporate executives.
Earlier this year, footwear and apparel giant Nike undertook a much-needed expansion of its paid family leave policy. Its former policy did not extend family benefits to hourly workers, new fathers or adoptive parents. And birth mothers only received six weeks paid time.
Under the new policy, all full-time employees (30 hours or more per week) are eligible for eight weeks paid family leave, Reuters reported in May. This includes new fathers, adoptive parents and employees who need to care for a sick family member. Birth mothers are now eligible for 14 weeks paid time, with the option to extend as medically necessary and recommended by a doctor.
At the start of next month, Adobe will introduce its new family leave policy to all employees. Under the new policy, all employees are eligible for the following, according to the software giant:
- Medical Leave: Up to 10 weeks of paid time for surgery, childbirth, a medical emergency or illness.
- Parental Leave: 16 weeks of paid time for primary caregivers. This includes moms and dads who become parents through childbirth, surrogacy, adoption or foster care.
- Maternity Leave: Through the combination of Medical and Parental Leave, birth mothers will receive up to 26 weeks of paid time.
- Family Care Leave: Provides employees up to four weeks of paid time to care for a sick family member.
Financial technology company ZestFinance is determined to stay on the cutting edge -- and that includes its benefits package for employees. At the start of this year, the company announced a new set of benefits that extend paid family leave to all workers.
Under the new policy, primary caregivers are eligible for six months of paid leave, with the option to work part-time for six additional months will full benefits. New secondary caregivers can take up to three months of paid time.
The new policy is part of ZestFinance's quest for a truly diverse and inclusive workforce. It's concurrent with the company's goals to increase minority diversity by 25 percent and achieve gender parity in its workforce, a goal it achieved for its C-suite last year.
Coca-Cola expanded its paid family leave earlier this year -- and said its millennial employees are largely to thank. As of next year, the company will offer six weeks of paid leave to all new parents in the U.S., including moms and dads who come to the role through birth, adoption or foster arrangements.
The policy includes hourly workers but comes with one caveat -- only non-bargaining (i.e., non-union) employees can take part.
Last year, an Amazon representative sent an email to Bloomberg BNA to announce its new paid family leave policy. Moving forward, Amazon is offering up to 20 paid weeks paid leave for new mothers, consisting of four weeks of paid pre-partum medical leave, followed by 10 weeks of paid maternity leave and six weeks of paid parental leave.
Those six weeks of parental leave are also available to new fathers and “all other new parents who have been at Amazon for a year or more,” the company told Bloomberg.
After going public last year, many worried that Etsy -- a certified B Corp and self-proclaimed social responsibility leader -- would change its tune to suit Wall Street. But that doesn't seem to be the case, at least when it comes to paid family leave.
Beginning in April, the peer-to-peer e-commerce company began offering all employees 26 weeks of fully paid leave when they become a parent through birth or adoption, regardless of their gender.
“When my wife and I adopted our son nearly four years ago, I took the full five weeks of leave we offered at the time,” Etsy CEO Chad Dickerson said in a statement in March. “It was the most important way I could have spent that time. Building a company is a team effort that includes the immense support we get from our families. I’m excited that our new leave policy will strengthen families and, as a result, the company as a whole.”
Image courtesy of Netflix (press use only)
Mary has reported on sustainability and social impact for over a decade and now serves as executive editor of TriplePundit. She is also the general manager of TriplePundit's Brand Studio, which has worked with dozens of organizations on sustainability storytelling, and VP of content for TriplePundit's parent company 3BL.