How to Support Mothers Returning to Work

Part 2:
What employers are doing in 2022

Rose McCarter-Field

By Rose McCarter-Field

 In 2018, PwC carried out research with 3,627 professional women, to understand what was important to them when returning to work after maternity. 95% of the women that took part in the survey felt that a greater degree of work flexibility on their return would assist them in operating at their best in their roles. This included flexible work practices such as movable start and stop times and flexi-time. 

But what are forward thinking employers doing presently about their maternity policies? Which companies are changing their outlook on supporting staff in their return to work? And how is it effecting their companies? Here are a few examples from some global technology companies.  



This UK based employer now offers reduced hours, such as a 30 hour week, during the first three to six months following return after maternity leave. Their revised maternity policy was implemented to allow mothers in tech, IT, sales and data roles the flexibility to return in a way that enables them to be the best in their role as they experience significant life changes. 


Netflix and Microsoft 

Netflix and Microsoft are among a number of Technology companies who have revamped their maternity policy to support mothers returning to their jobs. They have extended the length of their parental leave policies from 12 to 16 weeks. The aim of this change is to retain and attract the best talent to their companies. As a result they have seen an increase in staff retention following maternity leave. 



Google increased its maternity leave policy from 12 to 18 weeks. This was implemented across the board from their London based IT staff to their Germany based data analysts. Following this change of policy, the rate at which new mothers left the company was halved, an incredible statistic.   


A number of other global companies, many in the IT, finance, and data analytics sectors, have reported that doubling their leave from 8 to 16 weeks has resulted in their turnover rate for new mothers falling by 40%. It can be tempting to encourage staff to return to work quickly. However, this is not always beneficial to the company in the longer term.  

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