What Makes a Company Family-Friendly?

Working togetherWhat is it that parents want most of all? To have enough time for their kids, of course, to have the chance not to miss out on important moments, to be there for their young ones when they need them. For working parents, especially working moms, this means flexible working hours and a paid maternity leave, but not at the expense of their career development. The Working Mother website compiles annual lists of the 100 best companies to work for based on a set of criteria, the foremost of which are the above-mentioned. Here are the top 10 employers for 2013.

Health care company Abbott offers its employees flexible work schedules, telecommuting options and an average paid maternity leave of one month, plus two weeks paternity leave. It also provides back up child care and sick child care, and the proportion of women in its C-suite and managerial team is close to 50%.

Deloitte goes further, offering 14 weeks of paid maternity leave on average, eight weeks of paid paternity leave and it also offers its employees up to $25,000 in coverage for infertility treatment, as well as $5,000 in adoption costs. Women executives and managers make up 39%.

EY is another employer that takes its female employees’ family priorities at heart. With 14 weeks of average fully paid maternity leave and six weeks of paid paternity leave, the company also provides moms-to-be with coaches that prepare them in advance how to return to work with the least stress.

General Mills offers its employees, aside from the paid maternity and paternity leave of six and two weeks, respectively, a full range of services available at the company’s headquarters, including a beauty salon, a medical clinic with free dental and eye care, travel and party planning and financial coaching and scholarships.

IBM is also in the top 10, providing its employees with free financial counselling, low-price day care for their kids, as well as scholarships. Paid maternity leave is six weeks on average and the company also encourages healthy habits by offering its employees up to $5,300 a year.

KPMG for its part gives its employees numerous leave options that can be combined to make the average paid maternity leave longer as well as flexible and reduced working schedules according to their family needs. Telecommuting is also an option as in all the other top 10 companies.

Procter & Gamble is one of the companies that is now introducing new family-oriented incentives for their employees, such as personalized working schedules, health, legal and financial counselling and educational advice. The average fully paid maternity leave at P&G is eight weeks.

Next on the list is Prudential, which offers moms five weeks of paid maternity leave and up to 26 weeks of job-guaranteed leave. It also offers up to $10,000 in adoption cost coverage and 11 weeks maternity leave for adoptive mothers.

PwC provides new mothers with 15 weeks of paid maternity leave and fathers with three weeks of paid paternity leave. It has also created a support circle where veteran moms share their experience with new ones and another one specially dedicated to employees who give care to children and adults with special needs.

The top 10 list is completed by WellStar Health System, which offers its employees three weeks of paid maternity and paternity leave and flexible working hours which are used by almost all employees. The company also provides a range of healthy living incentives, such as on-site fitness clubs and fruit and vegetable deliveries. The majority of its executive and managerial teams, 70%, are female.