In a recent post we explored some of the steps companies can take towards creating an inclusive employee benefits package that better supports diversity and inclusion initiatives.
We talked about how all the good work that businesses do to build and nurture a diverse workplace can be undone, especially if employee benefits are not accessible to everyone. To follow on from this, let’s take a look at 3 types of inclusive benefits that companies are implementing to offer workers benefits that meet their individual needs.
#1 Equalising paid parental leave
Equalising and extending parental leave policies is one of the major steps that progressive businesses are taking. Consequently, to create more inclusive benefits in the workplace for parents. Hachette is a good example of a brand that is leading the way on this. The publisher has become one of only a handful of UK companies to equalise maternity pay. This means shared parental leave for employees that choose it. Both parents are able to take 20 weeks of fully-paid leave in a 37-week qualifying period. For the business, the voluntary move is a significant step towards changing preconceptions. Predominantly the assumption that women are primary carers. This move is also a step forward to closing the gender pay gap.
#2 Flexible working
Does anyone work 9 – 5 anymore? Part-time hours, flexi-working, working in term time only, working from home, compressed hours and flexible start and finish times all mean that people can work in a way that fits their lifestyle. However, flexible working is not just available to parents and carers. All employees have a right to request flexible working if they have worked for the same employer for 26 weeks. Although, some businesses like Hachette are now offering flexible working in all roles from day one so that everyone can achieve a positive work – life balance.
Nevertheless, recent research by the TUC tells us that there’s still a way to go on this. 30% of requests for flexible are still being declined. Also, the study found that 28% of workers cite flexible working as one of the biggest reasons they would consider looking for a new job.
If this is something your business is considering; open communication and clear policy guidelines are essential. This is to make sure that the give and take on both sides is balanced. Importantly, to ensure the needs of the business and the individual are met.
#3 Floating holidays
Forward-thinking businesses are looking at how flexible benefits, like floating holidays, can meet the needs of a diverse workforce. Not all employees will want to observe or celebrate the standard paid holidays that are scheduled throughout the year. Therefore, floating holidays enable all workers to choose to a couple of paid days off outside of the formal holiday calendar.
A final thought
Companies such as Virgin, Netflix and Glassdoor have already pushed the progressive frontier further by offering unlimited annual leave. This is becoming an increasingly common perk in the US to attract and keep talent. As as result, a minority of businesses in the UK are experimenting with the trend which is gaining traction on these shores. In fact, Reed reported a 20% increase in jobs offering unlimited holidays between 2017 and 2018.
Furthermore, if you’re looking at how to create an inclusive employee benefits package that better supports diversity in your business, check out our post for more super-helpful information.
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