Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Get HideMyAss! VPN, PC Mag's Top 10 VPNs of 2016 for 55% off for a Limited Time ×
Facebook

Facebook Expands Parental Leave Policy For All Employees Globally (mashable.com) 130

Reuters reports that Mark Zuckerberg's not the only Facebook employee who will enjoy a nice chunk of time off to spend with a new baby; the company is expanding its parental leave policy (and posting on Facebook about it). The benefit includes up to four months of paid leave, to all full-time employees, including those outside the U.S., regardless of sex, within a new child's first year. That means that new parents of either sex will be allowed to take a longer absence; previously, non-U.S. employees who were not primary caregivers were granted four weeks of leave. From the Reuters story: [Facebook HR head Lori Matloff] Goler said the new policy will primarily help new fathers and employees in same-sex relationships outside the United States, noting that it will not change maternity leave already available to employees worldwide. ... Technology companies in Silicon Valley have been rushing to extend parental leave allowances and other benefits to help recruit and retain employees. Many high-tech workers, however, do not take advantage of such benefits for fear of falling behind at work or missing out on promotions.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Facebook Expands Parental Leave Policy For All Employees Globally

Comments Filter:
  • by SeaFox ( 739806 ) on Sunday November 29, 2015 @03:23PM (#51022601)

    Sounds like Zuck made a mistake talking about his own leave, and caused some complaints in the company.

    • Sounds like Zuck made a mistake talking about his own leave, and caused some complaints in the company.

      His own 2 months of leave when his US based employees already got 4 ?

      No. I think that FB got good publicity from this and decided that more of a good thing is, in fact, a good thing.

  • Why would non-Facebook employees be interested in this at all?

    • Because -- given the tech talent crunch -- tech companies are competing for talent. One way they do that is by providing more aggressive benefits. This means that as large name-brand companies change their benefits (such as parental leave) for the better, other companies are likely to follow.

      And I speak here as someone who works at Netflix, which went public with "do what makes sense for you and we'll cover you for a year after your child's birth or adoption" a few months ago.

      In short: Facebook doing it w

      • Because -- given the tech talent crunch -- tech companies are competing for talent. One way they do that is by providing more aggressive benefits. This means that as large name-brand companies change their benefits (such as parental leave) for the better, other companies are likely to follow.

        It's all public relations bullshit.

        If you can take several months off, it just means the company doesn't really need you. Or, it means someone else is will have to work harder (with no extra pay) to make up for your absence

        • If you can take several months off, it just means the company doesn't really need you. Or, it means someone else is will have to work harder (with no extra pay) to make up for your absence

          That's why God made temporary workers. If the absence of one employee means "someone else will have to work harder", then companies need to examine their staffing strategy.

        • by drolli ( 522659 )

          Not true. In a long-running project people who know the project inside out can be absent for four months and be very valuable directly when they come back.

          What you talk about is the bus factor. In a decently managed project nobody should be irreplaceable.

          An that is very different from the impact of loosing employees when they get parents. No company should be willing (or can afford) the opportunity to keep good people working on the companies project (as opposed to: people starting looking for a better job

        • If you can take several months off, it just means the company doesn't really need you. ...

          Yes, but your comment is just plain wrong-headed, frankly. Small companies really, really need their employees. Departure of a key employee can sink a small company.

          A large company like facebook has people leaving ALL the time. People retire, quit, move, change jobs, get sick, die and so on continuously. Any company over about 10 people is going to have to deal with departing and absent employees on a regular basis. Yo

    • by SeaFox ( 739806 )

      It's a sign of Corporate America actually acknowledging their employees as human beings and not just "human resource cogs" in their money-making machine. It takes the same time and energy to raise a child whether you're a CxO or one of the 99%. A maternity leave policy that doesn't discriminate on this point is a Good Thing.

      • by Kohath ( 38547 )

        Facebook isn't really like "Corporate America". Facebook can afford to give expensive benefits to employees because Facebook's business is hugely profitable and growing fast. Most companies have neither Facebook's growth nor Facebook's profit potential. If you expect other companies to be like Facebook, you will be disappointed.

        • by ranton ( 36917 )

          If you expect other companies to be like Facebook, you will be disappointed.

          Most companies in developed countries already give benefits similar to or exceeding what Facebook has just announced. It's only uncommon in the US.

      • An important point: this includes paternity leave, which is arguably pretty important if you want to decrease the lifetime earnings gap between men and women.
    • by Malc ( 1751 )

      It makes a nice change hearing something like this from the US, especially after that whole thing with Marissa Mayer. She did new parents no favours whatsoever. Americans generally have a shit deal when it comes to things like this, and it's a little funny saying that this is a global company policy for this reason.

    • by rsborg ( 111459 )

      Why would non-Facebook employees be interested in this at all?

      I have a friend who works at another silicon valley startup (same VC partners as Facebook) who recently adopted Netflx's unlimited vacation, and they may also be interested in doing the 4-month prenatal leave as well.

      Facebook could be a high-profile benefits leader here. As much as I don't like FB, I respect this move. At least Zuck is fair and consistent on this, unlike Meyer.

  • This is less than the legal minimum in some countries. So some foreign Facebook employers already get more.

  • by TheGavster ( 774657 ) on Sunday November 29, 2015 @03:58PM (#51022743) Homepage

    Allowing employees to take a big block off to get started on what may be the biggest achievement of their life is great, but what about for people whose aspiration is something other than being a parent? Even a guaranteed job after an unpaid sabbatical is a rare benefit. A generic "life goal" leave is, I would think, even cheaper to offer since the leave can be planned in advance to avoid crunch times (not that parents can't plan, but it's a rare one that seems to).

    • It is obviously not an unpayed sabbatical but a oayed leave.
      In Europe the pay comes from the social insurances and/or the state.

      • I used the unpaid example to draw a sharper contrast. A large block of time off is generally unavailable under any terms, except at companies like FB (or apparently everywhere in Europe) that explicitly call out child-rearing.

        Since you seem to know of the system: If European democracies have a state system for paying for the leave, did the debate include proposals to allow payments for other avocations?

        • by Kjella ( 173770 )

          I used the unpaid example to draw a sharper contrast. A large block of time off is generally unavailable under any terms, except at companies like FB (or apparently everywhere in Europe) that explicitly call out child-rearing.

          Since you seem to know of the system: If European democracies have a state system for paying for the leave, did the debate include proposals to allow payments for other avocations?

          Europe is a big place and it probably varies to jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but I'd say generally no. I know that here in Norway there are a few other exceptions where the government may step in and pay like if you're giving care to someone seriously ill because you're a de facto replacement for public healthcare but for personal projects you are on your own. It has been suggested though that those who want to be slackers can be employed for a relatively short while, then go on unemployment benefits while

        • Sabbaticsls, payed or unpaied are a matter of contract between employer and employee.
          Parental leave is regulated by law. Most countries in the EU and surroundings have laws regarding that. Depending on country the payment is split between employer and the state/wellfare. I believe in germany it is 100% payed by the state.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Allowing employees to take a big block off to get started on what may be the biggest achievement of their life is great, but what about for people whose aspiration is something other than being a parent?

      Depends, do you expect younger people to take care of stuff when you get old?
      If you do then perhaps it isn't entirely a bad idea that you have to spend some extra time working so that those who do decide to get children gets to raise them to not be horrible persons?

      • Let me turn that around: Should child rearing be restricted to those who can demonstrate that they won't raise them to be horrible? I know plenty of complete jerks who had a parent stay at home.

        In any case, if this leave is special because it appeals to a higher purpose, then there are many other higher purposes that I can think of that are equally deserving of paid leave. An engineer could take time off to educate underserved populations, or to apply their skills to solve basic problems in developing areas

    • Because the economy and society will collapse without people having children?

  • Reminds me of my time in the military. I'd been in 5 years and my housing was a barracks ( dormitory ) with shared bathroom. Someone just coming in with a spouse, kids or not, got a 2 or 3 bedroom house. My meals allowance was the ability to eat in a dining hall. Not on the base at mealtime? Sucks to be you, buy your own meal. Those with families got cash instead to eat what they wanted , when they wanted.

    Like family leave with no comparable benefit for those who don't produce children, it's being comp

  • Sigh (Score:5, Informative)

    by ledow ( 319597 ) on Sunday November 29, 2015 @04:59PM (#51022943) Homepage

    Welcome to the 21st-fucking-century.

    UK Statutory Maternity / Paternity Pay:

    https://www.gov.uk/paternity-p... [www.gov.uk]

    Gives up to 52 weeks paid leave for one/either/both parents (shared among them), including in case of stillborn, including for adoption, legally allowing you to build up holiday, get rises and return to work while it goes on.

    Sure, it won't necessarily be at full-pay-rates but this is the fucking bare, legal, statutory MINIMUM that you're required to give by even being an employer in the UK

    So let's not shout about how great Facebook are for letting you spend more than a fucking month with your newborn child.

    The US really need to get out more and look at what other countries consider normal and/or moral.

    • by Malc ( 1751 )

      From the Government source you linked to:

      The statutory weekly rate of Paternity Pay and Additional Paternity Pay is £139.58, or 90% of your average weekly earnings (whichever is lower).

      This a pittance, especially for those of us who live in London. We couldn't afford to live off this if I wanted to take off more than the two weeks that I'd get at full pay. This whole 52 weeks paid leave is BS as far as I can tell, but made some good publicity for the last government.

      • This a pittance, especially for those of us who live in London

        There's a solution to that. At least two solutions, actually. Personally, I'd go for the thermonuclear revocation of the last millennium of planning consents, but some people might consider London to have some features worth not being a smoking hole in the ground.

  • Many high-tech workers, however, do not take advantage of such benefits for fear of falling behind at work or missing out on promotions.

    The final item in the summary and from TFA caught my attention. Reuters was absent of details on a study proving this statement. The best thing I could find was a a Harvard Business Review article here:
    https://hbr.org/2015/11/3-ways-tech-companies-are-offering-parental-leave

    Linking to a study here:
    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com... [wiley.com]

    With highly questionable methods - age, gender, socio-economic background, etc. etc. bias anybody?

    Volunteers (N = 371, 131 men) participated in exchange for partial fulfillment of their Introductory Psychology research requirement. Of these, 50% were White, 30% were Asian, 4% were Black, 6% were Hispanic, and 10% reported another ethnic identity. The design of the experiment was a 2 (target race: Black, White) × 4 (family leave condition: childcare, parental care, two controls) × 2 (participant gender) between-participants factorial. We used two control targets; one who asked a HR officer for more hours (rather than time off), and one who merely inquired about his employee benefits. We included the latter control condition because it was possible that asking for more hours would be viewed as particularly masculine (e.g., ambitious). However, preliminary analyses showed no significant differences between the two control groups; they were therefore collapsed.

    If anybody can find other research surrounding this topic - I'd love t

  • In Germany parents have to take 14 months in the first three years, and one parents can take 12 months maximum, so both have to stay home for at least two months: payed by the state, of course.
    • So, just have a kid every year and live on the dole.
      • by rsborg ( 111459 )

        So, just have a kid every year and live on the dole.

        There is this little, teensy side effect of actually having the kids and having to take care of them... I take it you are not a parent. After having a few, you might understand that the first year is likely not the most difficult - especially with multiple kids.

The meat is rotten, but the booze is holding out. Computer translation of "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak."

Working...