Paid Parental Leave Holding Steady, SHRM Survey Finds
Author: Michael Cardman, XpertHR Legal Editor
March 14, 2017
Back in 2015, when high-profile companies like Netflix, Amazon and Microsoft announced that they were going to start providing 20 weeks or more of paid parental leave, many observers speculated that other companies would soon follow suit.
A new survey from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) shows that has not come to pass.
Based on a nationally representative group of 920 employers, SHRM found there was no statistically significant change between 2012 and 2016 in either the duration of job-guaranteed parental leave or in the provision of paid parental leave:
|Leave Policy / Benefit||2012||2016|
|Maximum job-guaranteed leave for women following the birth of a child||Fewer than 12 weeks||10%||7%|
|More than 12 weeks||30%||33%|
|Average maximum job-guaranteed leave for women following the birth of a child (weeks)||14.2||14.5|
|Maximum job-guaranteed leave for spouse/partners of women who give birth following the birth of their child||Fewer than 12 weeks||25%||23%|
|More than 12 weeks||15%||18%|
|Average maximum job-guaranteed leave for spouses/partners of women following the birth of their child (weeks)||10.6||11.2|
|Do female employees who give birth receive any pay from any source during the period of their disability?||Yes||58%||58%|
|Do employees who receive (at least some) pay during the period of maternity-related disability receive full or part pay?||Full pay||9%||10%|
|Depends on the situation||28%||20%|
|Do spouses/partners of women who give birth receive any paid time off following the birth of their child?||Yes||14%||15%|
While most employers have not yet followed in the footsteps of Amazon, Netflix and Microsoft, it remains possible they may do so in the future, according to Ellen Galinsky, president and co-founder of the Families and Work Institute (FWI) and an author of the study.
"Whether high-profile companies offering paid leave are out of step with the majority of employers or leading the way remains to be seen," Galinsky said in a statement. "Given [other findings in the study] that 78% of employers reported difficulty in recruiting employees for highly skilled jobs and 38% reported difficulty in recruiting for entry-level, hourly jobs, these high-profile companies could be leading the way in the strategic use of leave benefits."