What our inclusive Parental Policy means to #movethedial

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By: Jodi Kovitz, CEO & Founder of #movethedial

I am a single mom as much as I am a CEO, Founder and builder of communities. I do not want to check this part of my life at the door when I come to work. I want to celebrate it, and flow in and out of it.

At #movethedial we think deeply about the unrivalled power of belonging. To feel a sense of belonging, people need to know that they can show up as their authentic and full selves, every day. So, we aim to build a community that invites all humans to include all major parts of their personal identities as they participate in events and programs we create and support.

That community starts with our own team. We understand that family is important and that family means different things to different people. In thinking about some of the ways we could build a culture that fosters a sense of belonging for everyone, we created a Parental Leave policy where all parents regardless of gender or sexual identity – are treated equally and all types of families – whether biological, adopted, or chosen – are respected.

Even though we are a relatively new company, it was important to me to prioritize creating a policy that is market-leading and on par with or even more supportive than some of Canada’s top family-friendly employers. After significant research and input from many experts, we created a policy that provides 100% parental top-up base for 26 weeks (6 months) for biological parents and adoptive parents, and continued benefits while you’re on leave. If you choose to be a parent, I want to cultivate a truly inclusive workplace that you can excel in and set the stage for your identity as a parent always being welcomed, celebrated and honoured.

As a mother who has experienced the return to the workforce, having a policy that ensures smooth reintegration was so important to me. With the huge problems of mid-level career women dropping out of the tech industry and the millennial workforce now edging towards parenting years, it’s important to have extremely family-friendly policies in place to retain talent.

One way to work toward equality, especially in the workplace, is to ensure that our employees of all gender identities and all types of families feel wholly supported to utilize our parental policies and benefits.

I encourage you to read through the outline of our policy below, hear what our employees have to say about it and if you're looking for some extra reading on the subject of supporting new parents, the incredible Anna MacKenzie (an engineer I mentor and who mentors me just as much) has put together a fantastic resource called The Parenting Playbook. A huge thank you to Anna and Dr. Sarah Saska, whose input and insights I relied on and valued as we built out our policy.

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Here’s some of what our employees have to say about it…

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Because I am returning to a supportive company culture that positions parental leave as a brief interlude, not a major disruption, I anticipate returning with renewed energy and focus for my work, and a feeling of being valued.
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While I’m not a parent yet, there’s a level of peace of mind that came to me when I found out that #movethedial’s parental leave policy is as robust as it is. It gives me the reassurance that the organization I’m so deeply committed to is going to give back in such a meaningful way to me when I need it the most.
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