While companies in India are waking up to the amended maternity benefits Act, Microsoft India has announced enhanced family leave benefits to meet the needs of their employees. Specifically, Microsoft introduced a new Family Caregiver leave benefit: four weeks of paid leave at 100% to take care of an immediate family member with a serious health condition. In addition, maternity benefits for those who are adopting a child or who choose to have a child via surrogacy is at 26 calendar weeks of paid leave. The company has also increased paternity leave to six weeks paid at 100%, to give both parents more time to bond with a new child.
Ira Gupta, Director - Human Resources, Microsoft India, said, “At Microsoft, we are committed to fostering a healthy work-life balance by enhancing productivity and efficiency for our employees through a flexible work environment as part of our workplace advantage philosophy. Our employees bring their best to work every day, to support our mission, strategy and culture. So, in turn, we are aiming to bring the best to our employees by continually assessing, refining and enhancing the world-class benefits we offer to ensure that they have the time they need to care for the people who matter most in their lives.”
Microsoft is committed to driving a culture of diversity and inclusivity across the company, and providing family leave benefits is one of the ways it supports that culture. Maternity leave is 26 weeks with effect from February 2016.
- Caregiver Leave: Introduced at up to 4 weeks to care for an immediate family member with a serious health condition
- Parental Leave in India: Leave enhanced as of 21 April 2017 is as follows:
- Paternity Leave increased to 6 weeks from 2 weeks
- Adoption Leave for Mothers increased to 26 weeks
- Adoption Leave for Fathers increased to 6 weeks
- Surrogacy Leave for Mothers introduced at 26 weeks
- Surrogacy Leave for Fathers introduced at 6 weeks
The traditional notion that extended and long parental leaves are a burden on the organisation and translate into increased cost, is slowly, but surely, giving way to an understanding that also includes the many benefits which come along with it. Employers are realising that generous and flexible parental leave policies not only help bring down employee attrition – meaning better efficiency, decreased talent acquisition and replacement-training costs, but also is a great way to promote an inclusive and encouraging work culture.