May 06, 2019
More paid parenting power to the people
Our home market of Sweden is famous around the world for its generous, paid parental leave policy enshrined in national law. The benefits for parents and children are obvious: they get to spend more time together and bond with each other, as they’re meant to do in those crucial early years.
So, being the human-centric and progressive company that we are, our EMEA team wondered: can we extend those benefits to our employees outside Sweden? Turns out we can. To start with, we now introduce a paid, gender-neutral parental leave policy for all our sales company employees in the EMEA region (Europe, Middle East & Africa), offering parents a total of six months of leave with 80 per cent pay.
It is the first of its kind in the car industry, fitting our role as an industry leader, as well as more generous and inclusive than most existing national parental leave policies. Of course the policy is gender-neutral and also applicable to same-sex parents and parents of adopted children.
“The EMEA initiative is one of several activities with the aim to create an inclusive culture and attract and retain a diverse set of people,” said Hanna Fager, head of People Experience (HR). “It improves life-work balance, boosts family time and fits with a progressive, human-centric company like Volvo Cars.”
Most European countries offer some form of paid parental leave, but there is often a large discrepancy between what is available for mothers and fathers – mostly to the disadvantage of fathers. Moreover, equal parental leave offers the potential to boost labour market and career opportunities for women by reducing career and pay gaps.
« Attracting and retaining the best people is crucial and we know that skilled people will be more selective in their choice of employer. The winners in this battle for talent will be companies that value diversity, modern and flexible working practices, and employee well-being. »
The new policy forms part of Volvo Cars’ ambitious people strategy, aimed at attracting and retaining the best people. We want to position ourselves as an employer of choice to both existing and future employees by offering one of the most generous and inclusive paid parental leave packages available.
“We need to be a truly attractive employer to be able to deliver on our ambitious growth plans,” says Hanna Fager. “Attracting and retaining the best people is crucial and we know that skilled people will be more selective in their choice of employer. The winners in this battle for talent will be companies that value diversity, modern and flexible working practices, and employee well-being.”