Tech’s top 2015 perk: Paid parental leave

Tech companies in 2015 opened up a new front in the recruiting and retention competition: Offering more generous paid family leave benefits.

As I wrote when the parental leave perk war began:

Tech companies are tripping over themselves showing that they “get it” when it comes to family leave….That message surely resonates with many men. But women are still typically the ones who bear the brunt of the transition to family life.

Netflix started the ball rolling with an offer of unlimited paid family leave for its workers who become new parents.

Since that offer was not extended to its hourly warehouse workers, who receive just 12 weeks paid leave, critics assailed the streaming giant, as I wrote.

Microsoft followed with an offer of 20 weeks paid leave for new moms; 12 weeks for fathers.

After a scathing New York Times article, Amazon went from giving fathers no paid leave to four weeks, in an offer that also included the firm’s 100,000 warehouse workers, as USA Today wrote.

Just this month, PayPal, which split off from eBay this year, will offer parents eight weeks of paid leave. And mothers can take an additional eight weeks of bonding time.

EBay itself offered new moms six months of paid leave, as CNN Money wrote.

Facebook offers four months paid leave — Mark Zuckerberg, the company’s CEO, is taking just two months of that leave after the birth of his daughter Max. But the social networking firm expanded that offer to its employees outside the U.S.

Facebook also took the extra step of requiring its contractors to pay workers at Facebook $4,000 when they become parents, as I wrote.

Adobe, not to be left out, offers 16 weeks of parental leave.

And Spotify, the private music streaming firm, got some attention for its offer of six months of parental leave, as the Huffington Post wrote.  The company said it would backdate the benefit so anyone whose child was born after Jan. 1, 2013 would be eligible.

In the coming year, more tech companies are likely to join in offering extended paid leaves for caretaking, whether it is a new child or an ailing family member.

Like Facebook, some will work to make sure contractors also see some of the same benefits as regular employees.

But what else may tech have up its sleeve as it fights for talent, particularly women?

Look no further than Salesforce, which did an audit of its pay policies to see if it had a gender income gap, which I wrote about. It found it did and upped salaries.

Above: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan announced the birth of their daughter, Max, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015 in a Facebook blog post. (Screenshot from Facebook)


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  • JonahWhales

    Is his wife here legally? She must have gotten one of those marry an American visas

  • Speakerofthe House

    Childless people already pay for your little snowflakes when you take your tax deductions. Now you are getting even more. What are all you freeloaders going to do when we payers decide enough is enough, and quit working?

  • I don’t suppose it occurred to anyone that “parental” leave is inherently age discrimination. But then why would the younger people tech industry realize they are in a larger world.

  • hoapres

    How about a pay increase.