Zomato Leads The Way: Rolls Out 26 Weeks Parental Leave Policy, Employees Rejoice
In first of its kind, the online restaurant searcher – Zomato has rolled out 26 weeks of parental leave policy for both its male and female permanent employees. The policy covers 13 countries, including India. It also extends to non-birthing parents in cases of surrogacy, adoption, and same-sex partners.
Zomato said that it would provide 26 weeks paid leave, in addition to following the government policy of the particular region which may provide for a longer duration of leave than the company policy.
Deepinder Goyal, Founder of Zomato, in a blog post on June 3 said, the motive behind introducing the parental leave policy is to lower down the number of women leaving the workforce. “One core issue that leads to fewer women leaders in organisations, the community, and the nation is the lack of universal paid parental leave.”
He said that women find it extremely difficult to have a healthy family life and professional life that leads to lack of diversity across all levels of organisations. He believes that unequal leave policy for men and women, while they are welcoming a child, causes gender disparity.
In the blog post stressing on the unbalance in the male-female ratio at the higher level, he said that men fill most of the senior positions, even if the organisation is trying to bring the gender balance in practice, due to lack of female workforce.
Goyal said, “I believe that young parents should be able to make a choice of how to care for their children. And that a myopic view of primary care-giving not only alienates one half of our workforce but also creates circumstances that lead to fewer female leaders within organisations, the community and the nation.”
According to the policy, the new parents are also eligible for $1000 endowment for a child. The parental leave policy also applies to employees who have had a child within the last six months.
In 2017, India passed the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which allows women to take leave for a maximum of 26 weeks. However, there is no provision for paternity leave.
The company also urged the government of other countries to come out with a permanent solution such as paternity leave bill to help individuals and organisations to flourish together. To have a genuinely gender-neutral organisation, the blog read, a country first has to be a gender-neutral nation.
The Logical Indian reached out to a few Zomato employees to gauge their reaction.
“Care-giving shouldn’t be an exclusive responsibility for young moms. And thanks to the introduction of paternity leave, men can also contribute equally at home. I hope we’ll be seeing more and more organizations follow Zomato in adopting this wind of change”, Vivek Choudhary, Art Director, Zomato, said.
Ayesha, who is in the sales and advertisement team said that this is a much needed policy change that this will the new family bond together. “This type of policy should be adopted by all the other companies in the country, for helping the employees with better work life balance,” she said.
Twitterati hailed the move, from calling it path breaking to bold.
That's quite a bold move for a start-up.
— Varada (@Nithin_Varada) June 4, 2019
— Mickey (@MickeyWins) June 4, 2019
This is pathbreaking! Congratulations.
— Akil Bakhshi (@akil_bakhshi) June 4, 2019