Sid Madge is founder of Meee (My Education Employment Enterprise) which draws on the best...read more
New research finds just 23 of the nation’s top 100 companies reveal what’s on offer to parents in terms of leave and pay
The need for new laws forcing firms to reveal their parental policies has been reinforced by new research.
Just 23 of the nation’s top businesses actually publish details of what they offer dads and mums in terms of time off and pay.
Mumsnet surveyed the FTSE 100 firms and found that while many boasted about offering Christmas hampers to staff or contemplation rooms just 23 fronted up about what mums and dads could expect when they have a baby.
Some companies promised ‘generous’ policies but didn’t go into any more detail.
That throws up problems for potential employees who want to make informed decisions about finances and career development. The importance of making parental policies easy to find in advance was highlighted further by another finding from the research. 82% of parents and prospective parents said they are reluctant to ask potential employers about parental leave policies because they worry it would make a job offer less likely.
The organisation is calling on the government to add parental leave and pay policies to gender pay gap reports.
Lib Dem MP Jo Swinson, likely to take over as the leader of her party later this month, introduced a draft bill to force firms to publish their parental policies. The government has promised to consult on that measure and repeated the pledge in the ‘gender equality roadmap’ it published last week.
Mumsnet founder Justine Roberts said: “This information is unbelievably significant for lots of parents; people need transparency so that they can make informed decisions, and when you take a step back it’s baffling that so many companies make it so difficult to find given that it significantly affects people’s lives. If more companies were to publish their policies it could well encourage a race to the top and would certainly reward employers who do the right thing. It’s bizarre that some of the UK’s largest employers feel the need to tell people about their ‘wellbeing libraries’ but not their parental leave policies.”
The companies that do measure up and publish their polices include household names like BT, Aviva, Diageo, Rolls-Royce and Unilever. Other well known firms in the FTSE 100 but missing from the list include Next, Sainsbury’s and Coca-Cola