Importance of equal parental leave in the workplace
Glandore attended this year’s Dublin City University 2019 Annual Family Business Conference which was held in both Dublin and Cork last month. The main focus of the event was on ‘Family Business Values and how they translate into business value’. This topic reminded us of how rooted our family values are within our business and just how important spending quality time with family during paternity leave really is.
We offer six months equal paternity leave to our glandore employees and we believe that our equal parental leave policy has a positive impact on both our business and our employees which is why we wanted to look at its key benefits.
We want all of our employees to enjoy coming to work each day and not be too stressed about their workload or deadlines they need to meet. We strongly believe that our equal paternity leave policy will allow them to feel fulfilled and ensure they take care of the physical and mental wellbeing of both themselves and their families. Between 2016 and 2018 over 51,000 fathers took paternity leave to spend more quality time with their children. Time spent at work is just as important as time spend at home with family, which is why we want both fathers and mothers to have the opportunity to bond and spend adequate time with the children, especially when they are newborns.
Helping achieve gender balance
As a female-led business here in Ireland, we understand that there is still a lot more work to be done regarding gender equality in the workplace. For gender equality to be achieved, we must first empower and support men to co-parent and share the childcare responsibility. A survey carried out by Jobbio shows that 84pc of new fathers believe there is not enough education around paternity leave while only 49pc of fathers took their allocated paternity leave in 2017.
Offering equal parental leave to all parents allows us to promote gender equality in the workplace while also helping make it the norm for fathers and partners to play a much more active role in their children’s lives. Additionally, it also allows mothers to break free from that traditional role and expectation within society.
What companies can do
Companies should ensure employees are aware of their benefits and entitlements and know that availing of such benefits will not harm their career growth within the company. Employers should promote taking time off to bond with new family members and ensure they have all the support they need when doing so. Equal paternity leave means that new and expectant fathers will need time to attend hospital appointments, request flexible days along with time to attend emergency doctors appointments with their kids or dependants. All these small supportive changes will allow parents to be less stressed and more engaged and productive when they return to work.