Family Friendly Benefits

A competitive salary is no longer enough to attract and keep top talent.

Starting a family is one of the most exciting parts of many peoples lives. However, it can also be a very confusing and stressful time when trying to balance an active family life with a busy working life. That’s where introducing family friendly benefits comes in.

Over the years, a variety of family friendly benefits and policies have become popular to attract and retain top talent and fill ever growing skills shortages. In addition to this, working parents have more employment rights than ever before, with further improvements and support becoming available over the next few months.

Benefits of creating a family friendly workspace

  • Increased productivity
  • Better rates of employee satisfaction
  • Improved quality of talent recruited
  • Higher staff retention rates
  • Improved diversity and inclusion
  • Better work-life balance

What statutory policies have to be followed?

Family friendly benefits are those that are more than required from an employer, but it is important to also know what a business is legally obligated to provide.

Maternity, paternity and shared parental leave and pay

As long as they meet the criteria set out on the website, employees could be eligible for statutory maternity, paternity or shared parental leave and pay.

Adoption leave and pay

Adoption leave is available for parents who choose to have a child through adoption or surrogacy. The key difference is that it is only available for one parent.

Parental bereavement leave and pay

In the tragic situation where you have lost a child under the age of 18 years old, you are entitled to at least 2 weeks of parental bereavement leave and pay.

Unpaid parental leave

If eligible, employees can take up to 18 weeks of unpaid parental leave up until their child turns 18. There are certain restrictions on this, such as a limit of no more than 4 weeks to be taken a year, but these can be negotiated with an employer.

Flexible working requests

All employees have a right to request flexible working from day one of their employment. This could include requesting changes to:

  • The number of hours worked
  • Start and finish times
  • Days of work
  • Place of work

5 family friendly benefits

Healthcare for more than just the worker

Rather than purely offering healthcare for the employee, consider the option of adding on a partner, child or other family member. For many, this can be an extreme help and does not typically cost much more as an employer.


There are a variety of ways to support employees with childcare, from discount vouchers, a certain number of paid hours, or even an onsight nursery/creche. Many parents now choose to leave work due to the increasing costs of childcare meaning they cannot afford to work, so this benefit could make all of the difference in helping parents access work.

Flexible working options

You’ve probably heard it before, and you will hear it again. There are a never ending number of softwares, management styles and tools to allow for flexible working in 2024. Whether they are big or small, there are some changes which can be made that will be game changing for parents. For example:

Enhanced parental leave and pay

More companies are now opting to offer employees enhanced maternity and/or paternity packages. The great part about this is that it is totally customisable to suit your business and the resources available. These could also be made available based on service or using a clawback clause.

Family-friendly social events

Something that can be massively overlooked is the ability for parents to access work social events. Often they are set up in a way where it is only possible for parents to participate if they can get childcare or events are heavily focused around alcohol. As much as these events can still go ahead, aim to set up situations where everyone is able to be included and feels welcome.

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