Adobe is Doubling its Paid Maternity Leave Following Similar Announcements from Netflix and Microsoft

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Adobe Shantanu Narayen
APAdobe CEO Shantanu Narayen.
By Richard Feloni

The California-based software company Adobe announced Monday that effective November 1, it will be doubling its paid maternity leave and boosting its paid paternity leave.

The announcement comes the week after Netflix announced it would offer a year of paid parental leave and Microsoft announced it would offer 12 weeks of paid paternal leave, but Adobe told Reuters that its own plan was in development long before it became aware of either Netflix or Microsoft's plans."We join an industry movement to better support our employees while striving towards increased workforce diversity," Donna Morris, Adobe's SVP of people and places, wrote on Adobe's official blog.

Adobe will be offering 26 weeks of paid maternity leave and 16 weeks of paid paternity leave for both birth and adoptive parents.

The company also announced it would be extending its paid medical leave to 10 weeks and paid family care leave to four weeks.

Adobe is just one more company to join an industry-spanning movement to boost worker benefits.

The University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School professor Stewart Friedman has been researching work-life balance policies in the US for the past 25 years and told Business Insider last week that the trend is mostly aimed at millennials.

Professionals in their 20s and early 30s, he said, want to work for a company that will allow them to spend time with their children to a degree that their parents were unable to, and factor benefits more heavily than preceding generations when making career decisions. This matters especially in the cutthroat world of Silicon Valley, where tech giants and startups compete for the young minds that will hopefully bring them million- or billion-dollar ideas.

Friedman said announcements like Adobe's and Netflix's also cause a positive publicity boost. Customers may be inspired to support a company that aligns with their values.

When a company adds to its benefits, it risks employees either abusing or not taking enough advantage of them, but companies like Adobe are betting that the benefits to recruiting and retention are worth it.

Friedman said that we should expect to continue hearing announcements of expanded parental leave benefits, since "we are in the midst of revolutionary change in how we think about the structure of work."
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