Yesterday Netflix announced that its employees will now receive unlimited maternity or paternity leave during the first year after their child’s birth or adoption.
The company will pay them normally during their time off, and they can choose to come back to work full- or part-time. And if they feel they’ve come back too early, employees can take more time off later in the year.
Wow. Netflix was already getting top marks from its customers for convenience, but this new policy indicates the company extends the same sentiment to its employees as well. The policy is especially notable because it’s available to dads too. The company already offers unlimited paid vacation time, but other big tech companies like Facebook and Google can’t compete when it comes to the babies. Google offers moms five months off, and Facebook gives moms and dads four.
Another thing that makes this new policy impressive is the U.S. currently has no paid leave policy at all. And because dads are part of the package, Netflix’s set up helps to ensure that women aren’t inadvertently penalized for taking time off to be mothers.
It could be challenging for organizations to juggle responsibilities when people are out for long stretches, but with planning and notice — there’s nine whole months to get things in order — these situations could present opportunities to train new leaders or offer stretch assignments while getting the work done.
And think of all the cute baby pictures that will be coming in while the new parents are out on leave.