Six in 10 parents or expectant parents would switch jobs for better parental leave, a survey by Virgin Money has found.
Almost the same proportion (58%) feared that they would miss out on promotions or career opportunities while taking maternity or paternity leave, and over half (52%) are afraid of losing their job.
Not surprisingly, 92% of parents believe an organisation’s policy on parental leave is an important factor when considering applying for a role there. One in seven have already left a job due to poor parental leave allowance, the bank said.
Almost a third (29%) of working parents think UK maternity and paternity benefits are outdated, according to Virgin Money’s survey.
Its research also revealed that other ‘work-life balance’ benefits such as generous leave were important to those with families.
Employees also expect their company to offer 30 days annual leave (55%), wellbeing days (39%), private medical insurance (31%) and the opportunity to work remotely abroad each year (28%), it found.
The bank released its research to coincide with the launch of A Life More Virgin, which offers equal family leave from the first day of employment to all employees.
Support for parents
Mothers, fathers and those looking to adopt can take up to 20 weeks fully paid leave and 52 weeks leave overall. Colleagues will have the flexibility to choose when to take it and when to receive pay.
Employees are also entitled to 30 days’ paid holiday and an additional five “wellbeing” days.
CEO David Duffy said: “The pandemic has permanently changed our approach to working life. It’s clear to us that by taking a purpose-driven approach to how we work, we can help colleagues achieve a work-life balance that brings out their best.
“Virgin is famous for offering enviable benefits and we know how important parental leave is to our people. It is important our colleagues know how valued they are, and this purpose-driven benefits package reflects that.”
The 2021 Parental Fog Index, which analyses company websites for the information they offer on parental benefits, recently found that less than four in 10 companies publish details of their policies.