Design Element 4
WILL YOU OFFER FLEXIBILITY IN HOW THE PERIOD OF LEAVE IS STRUCTURED?
Decisions to Be Made
Consider what flexibility you will build into your paid family & medical leave policy.
- Will the policy provide flexibility in when leave is taken? (e.g., any time in the first year of a child's life)
- Will the policy provide flexibility in how leave is taken? (e.g., non-consecutive weeks)
- Will the policy provide flexibility in length of leave? (e.g., twice the weeks at half the pay rate)
How to Approach These Decisions
Consider employee input
- Examine employee survey results
- Discuss leave structure in a focus group gathering
Consider your company's philosophy on workplace flexibility - If flexibility is a key tenet of your company's workplace philosophy, your PFML policy should reflect this
Determine how intermittent leave would affect company operations
- Some business models are better able to handle employees on intermittent leave than others
- Consult business leaders across functions to determine how leave taken all at once vs. intermittently would affect business operations
REAL COMPANY EXAMPLES
Company A: Gathered input from parents in the organization on what they would value in a parental leave policy. It determined that adding flexibility to when leave can be taken could create meaningful value. It implemented a policy allowing several days of leave to be taken intermittently, allowing parents to more easily attend first-year doctor's visits, etc.
Company B: Decided it would be least disruptive to business for parental leave to be taken all at once, so the organization could plan ahead how to cover positions. The policy requires leave to be taken all at once, but provides flexibility for employees to choose when they take this leave, anytime within a year of the child's birth.