Your’e having a baby! Well, maybe not you personally, but someone in your office is and that sort of wrangles you into the whole thing on a certain level. So what can you expect when one of your employees is having a baby?
So a member of your office just delivered the news that they are expecting a new born! The office is over joyed, everyone is giving congratulations, and you canâ€™t wait to watch your co-worker start this new chapter in their lives. But now you must prepare for the impending Maternity or Paternity leave before and after the baby is due. Companies with over fifty employeeâ€™s are required to provide 12 weeks FMLA if the employee needs within the first year of the childâ€™s life. This doesnâ€™t include possible state provision options or company policies regarding Maternity and Paternity leave.
So depending on your office size, you may find yourself in a difficult predicament. A key member of your team may be gone for two or three months. Or maybe they will just be around sporadically while getting settled in with the baby. How can your company possibly cope? Well we can look at multiple ways this scenario may unfold.
Some companies would rather fill in the vacancies until their employee returns to work by contacting a temp agency. Another route would be to try the working from homeÂ option. These two solutions can allow the employeeâ€™s duties to continue to be fulfilled without added stress to the rest of the company. However, these alternatives may not be as effective or operate as smoothly.
Some employers would like to take the route of the other office members taking up the slack for the few months their coworker may be gone. This can be cost effective overall, and can be a great training opportunity for the staff to take on new responsibilities. Yes, it may help other team members develop their skills and appreciate what the person on leave does, but juggling multiple job roles may increase stress levels and negatively impact performances in other areas.
During this time in your employeeâ€™s life when they bring a new life into the world they are going to be stressed, busy, tired, but hopefully happy. Yes, it is your responsibility to decide how to cover for them, but it is in their best interest to help you work something out. Whether you choose to bring in temporary help to fill the void, arrange a work from home understanding, or have their co-workers cover for them, there are ways to keep your tight ship running smoothly until they return from maternity or paternity leave.