Many employers like to think of themselves as “family friendly,” though some companies find it hard to maintain that position. If a company wants to be a great place for parents to work, consider these strategies to boost happiness for new parents. Some are easy, while others are bigger commitments. However, a company only needs a few in place, so when it says “we’re family-friendly,” employees know the company stands behind that statement.
Have a Breastfeeding Room — Breastfeeding moms need a quiet, private room to either feed their baby or pump breast milk. Having to scramble to find a room is enough to cause stress for new moms. Make it easy for new moms by designating a room for this purpose. Let employees using the room lock it or place a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door. Also, make sure it’s not listed as an available space for anything other than this purpose. This will avoid any confusion.
Offer Flexible Work Schedule Options — Many new parents are eager to reconnect with work, but hesitate at the idea of leaving their newborn for a full day. Companies can help employees through this transition by giving parents the option to work remotely after the baby is born. If working at home isn’t an option, consider flexible hours or job sharing. Helping new employees through this transition can ease their stress. It will also make them more loyal to the company if they have future children.
Start a New-Parent Support Group — In large companies, there may be many new parents at one time. Start a support group for them. Bring in a couple of guest speakers or designate a time for the new parents to get together. They will appreciate the show of support from the company. Also, they’ll connect with other employees, making their bond with the company even stronger.
Give Time Off for New Dads — Don’t forget about new dads too. There is no nationwide law requiring paid time off for dads, but that doesn’t mean a company can’t offer it. Some states have paternity laws on the books (California, New Jersey, and Washington). When it’s not required, go the extra mile and offer new dads paid time off rather than making them use vacation or sick time.
Open an Onsite Nursery — An onsite nursery is a huge perk for parents. It allows parents to visit their children during work breaks and address the child’s needs immediately. While this can be expensive, consider the kind of talent a company can attract by offering this benefit. Employees will often gladly pay for onsite child care since they would have to pay for childcare anyway. Payments from employees can help subsidize the cost of the nursery. Most importantly, a company can keep parents closer to their babies. They’ll be happier moms and dads, and happier employees are more productive and better for the workplace.
Don’t lose good employees because company policies aren’t baby-friendly. These strategies will show employees that a company wants to help them through this exciting time. Consider these policies whenever it’s time to evaluate making a company friendly for parents with new babies.
For more information about our Human Resource Consulting services and on-demand packages please visit DFRIHR.com or call 877-803-3486.