The Harvard Business Review’s blog (Harvard blogs?) ran a piece earlier today about a recent Pew Research study that claims more women are not having children.
The HBR brushes over the whole birth control thing and serves its best interest by focusing on what they consider having it all (an advanced degree and at least one child), picking the following statistic out of the hay stack, "in 2008, 24% of women ages 40-44 with a master's, doctoral or professional degree had not had children, a decline from 31% in 1994."
This had me thinking about the benefits that the Big 4 provide to their employees going through early parenthood. What might surprise you (or might not) is how similar the firms’ services are.
Parental leave of absence: “Eligible primary care parents with three months of service can use six weeks of paid parental leave during the year following birth or adoption placement (three weeks for non-primary care parents). This is in addition to maternity disability benefits, if applicable, of 60% to 100% for approximately 8 weeks. Paid parental leave runs concurrently with any job-protected time under family and medical leave.”
Provided by every Big 4 firm:
Adoption assistance – Per EY’s site: “Pays expenses up to $5,000 per child (with an additional $1,000 for special needs children), with paid leave available for the caregivers, along with resource and referral services.”
Lactation program – PwC’s program, explained: “Access to educational materials, unlimited pre/post-birth counseling from nationally recognized lactation specialists and breast pump discounts are available through this program. Private mother's rooms are also available in many of our offices.” Do conference frooms count as “mothers’ rooms?”
Parental paid leave of absence
Deloitte – 2 weeks (this is all I could find – can anyone prove differently?)
PwC – up to 6 weeks
KPMG – 8 weeks “Professionals who plan to return to work after the birth or adoption, are eligible for two weeks (10 days) of paid child care leave.”
E&Y – 6 weeks
Family time off - The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 promises 12 weeks of unpaid leave for those employees who need to take care of a sick family member. E&Y extends this service to 16 weeks.
Back up Child and Elder Care – many of the firms provide some kind of support for employees when family care emergencies occur. KPMG takes things one step further by allowing employees to share their unused resources with colleagues that have depleted their resources.
Note – I used external websites when reviewing the different options – these might outdated from what you have internally. Does your local office offer something unique that is not listed here? Share details in the comments.