Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is expanding its employee’s paid leave who need to take of a sick relative. The company is now offering four weeks of paid leave with an eight additional weeks unpaid time. The company was previously offering 12 weeks of unpaid leave. Workers always use this time to look after their sick or elderly family member.
The new benefits which will apply to workers who have a close relative suffering a critical health problem as defined by the Family Medical Leave Act was disclosed through a blog post on LinkedIn, the company’s chief people officer Kathleen Hogan.
This benefit is now available to Microsoft workers in 22 countries and will be spread out globally in the coming six months. The company has a workforce of around 121,000 globally.
Two years ago, consulting firm Deloitte announced that its employees will be offered 16 weeks of paid family care leave. Early this year Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) expanded its employee benefits and included 20 days of paid leave to allow its employees to grieve the loss of a family member. The company also offered six weeks of paid leave to look after sick relatives.
Many tech companies offer discretionary time off or unlimited paid time off (PTO). According to Challenger Gray & Christmas, a Chicago firm that tracks employment and benefits trends this time can be used for family care. Of these companies include Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) and HubSpot Inc (NYSE:HUBS).
LinkedIn which was bought by Microsoft last year and which focuses on social networking has been offering its employees in the U.S six weeks of paid family leave since 2014. In Microsoft’s case, the company is offering paid time off that is separate from other vacation time or holidays that its employees get. Challenger, Gray & Christmas CEO John Challenger says many companies are increasingly becoming concerned about recruiting and retaining top talents. He adds that many companies are helping their employees strike a balance between work and life.
The move by Microsoft to post this benefit publicly may be motivated by the move where many companies compare benefits offered by several competing companies before making career decisions. Many companies are keen at recruiting and retaining their employees.