One way that small businesses have evolved over the past few years is by instituting more family-friendly policies. Family-friendly policies make businesses more adaptable and better equipped for a wider population, and they allow employees who are parents to more easily achieve a work-life balance – which ultimately helps them perform better on the job. While large companies have lots of resources to offer to employees who are parents, small businesses are often able to make valuable changes more easily and quickly than large, corporate organizations — because they don’t have to go through tons of red tape with an HR department or extensive company policies.
Family-Friendly Policies for Small Companies
If you’re a small business looking to make your work environment more family-friendly here are some easy family-friendly policies that you can introduce.
Parents have busy schedules and have to deal with last-minute changes in their kids’ schedules as well. Sometimes events come up, babysitters cancel, kids get sick, etc. Flex Time is a work schedule that is adjustable and lets employees decide when they want to start and end they workday. Parents who have afternoon commitments could show up at 6 or 7am and head out at 3 or 4pm (instead of the typical 9 to 5 workday). Flex schedules allow employees to pop out to pick up the kids to school or get them to a dentist appointment, etc., which helps reduce both stress and childcare costs.
Paid Maternity/Paternity Leave
According to the US Department of labor, companies with less than 50 employees don’t have to offer paid maternity leave – and this can be really hard on a family. Not all small businesses are in a financial position to offer this, but think about ways you could offer partial income or other benefits to your employees while they are adjusting to parenthood. It is likely to make them much more loyal to you in the long run.
Many startups and small businesses are opting for telecommuting positions these days. This is an ideal situation for families because parents can multi-task and not worry about having to be in a specific location all day. It’s one of the best perks a company can offer to parents.
If you need your staff on-site, you could outsource childcare help for the office. On-site childcare helps parents rest assured that their kids are happy and safe during the day, which can help them work more effectively. It’s also nice for parents to be able to check in on kids during lunch breaks, etc.
No caps on promotions
Companies can underscore the fact that having a baby won’t keep you from getting raises or promotions. It’s a good idea to have transparent policies about how new parents, especially women, aren’t at risk of losing their ability to get promoted if they are planning to have a child.
Making your business a family-friendly environment is a good way to help attract young talent that may, someday, want to start a family. If you want help instituting family friendly policies at your workplace, get in touch with Vesper. We can help you do things like find an in-house childcare solution, or provide an extra set of hands on-demand should a parent need to leave the office.