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Parental leave just got bigger at Pinterest

Protocol Workplace

Welcome back to our Workplace newsletter where we share the latest tips, tools and insights to help you stay informed about the modern tech office. Today: Pinterest’s expanded parental leave policy, 2022 work predictions and shifts in remote-workplace culture.

—Amber Burton, Reporter (twitter | email)

Pinterest expands its parental leave

Pinterest has long been known for having one of the most progressive parental leave policies in the tech industry, but yesterday it pushed its policy even further. The social media company announced it has expanded its policies for parents again.

The news follows a national push for mandatory parental leave in the U.S. In November, the House passed legislation backed by President Biden that includes a proposal for four weeks of paid family and medical leave for all workers in the country.

The biggest change at Pinterest? More time for birthing and non-birthing parents. Pinterest’s update to its policies highlights how Silicon Valley has been leading corporate America in offering generous parental leave.

  • Leave for birthing parents in the U.S. was extended from 16 weeks to a whopping 26 weeks of leave.
  • Leave for adoptive parents is increasing from 16 weeks to 20 weeks. This is in addition to an increase of monetary assistance from $5,000 to $10,000 for adoptive parents.

Pinterest’s goal is to set a global standard for parental leave. Alice Vichaita, head of Global Benefits and Mobility at Pinterest, said the changes came in response to employee feedback.

  • Previously, outside of the U.S. parental leave for employees was 12 weeks, while it was 16 weeks for workers in the States.
  • “We constantly evaluate our benefits to ensure that we continue to do our work to advance a culture where employees feel that they can bring their full selves to work and create a life that they love,” she told Protocol. “Women, as we know, have been especially challenged during this COVID period, and we believe that it's essential that we support them, including through the diversity of paths to parenthood.”
  • “There's a competitive lens to this as well and we use that as a point of reference. But I think most importantly, we listen to our employees,” she said. Vichaita’s team works with Pinterest employee resource groups to evaluate their thoughts on potential benefits and to ensure it resonates with those groups as well.

Supporting parents requires thinking about the full spectrum of outcomes. That includes miscarriages and newborn health emergencies.

  • Employees who experience miscarriage will be allotted four weeks of paid leave. There will be no need for formal documentation to take such leave, said Vichaita. Employees will simply need to communicate confidentially with their manager. There is no tracking required in Pinterest’s internal system as well.
  • Pinterest is not a pioneer in miscarriage leave. Reddit was among the first major tech employers to offer it several years ago, and its benefit period at eight and a half weeks is more generous. But Pinterest deserves credit for adding it.
  • For employees who have a newborn child in the NICU, Pinterest will offer 12 weeks of paid leave.
  • Last, IVF and egg freezing is being made available to all its employees globally.
Benefits like these will require constant evaluation. “We are happy with all the benefits we're able to roll out for next year, but I think five years from now we're going to have to continue to monitor and iterate on these benefits like we do for all of our benefits programs,” said Vichaita.

Glassdoor’s crystal ball

On Wednesday, Glassdoor released its predictions for the future of work in 2022. I personally hoped there would be visions of magical enterprise tech and solutions to our hybrid workflows, but the future appears to be more mixed. Based on data the company has gathered from its reviews, work in 2022 will likely continue to be difficult. The upside? The challenges are a bit more familiar, wrote my colleague Michelle Ma in her story this week. Glassdoor predicted some of the more recent issues that have become commonplace in the tech industry will continue: Hiring will remain extremely competitive and top talent will wish to remain remote and be paid premium rates.

Read the full story here for the rest of Glassdoor’s predictions.


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More stories from us

Both Meta and Lyfthave been added to the list of tech companies delaying their return to office plans.

NYC has become the backdrop to the 15-minute delivery race. DoorDash is just the latest of at least six companies duking it out for fastest delivery.

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Today’s Tips & Tools

Do you have a tough time keeping up with the news? Same. Even though it’s my job as a journalist. Maybe Twitter’s trending topics aren’t customizable enough for you, or you’re tired of your usual newsletters. Here are some tools we at Protocol use to stay freakishly up-to-date, all so we can get you the news that matters!

  • Google Alerts. You can set up emailed alerts based on keywords, and customize the frequency, language and number of alerts that arrive in your inbox. To ensure your inbox isn’t too cluttered, create a separate “news feed” folder. Here’s how to create one in Outlook, and one in Gmail.
  • RSS feed readers. These are web-based tools where you can compile a ton of publications into organized folders, based on topic or whatever criteria you like. For example, I have a general “tech news” folder as well as a “tools & productivity” folder. There are a ton of aggregators that will help you do this, including Feedly, Flipboard and Inoreader.

— Lizzy Lawrence, Reporter (twitter | email)

A shift in work culture

The idea that company culture has shifted will not come as a surprise to the many people who have spent more of their time working from home than in a communal office over the past two years. But what may shock some is that employees appear to be OK with the cultural shift. Human resources software company BambooHR recently conducted a survey studying how remote work has affected workplace culture.

Here’s what it found:

  • People no longer feel they need a physical office to create workplace culture. In fact, 73% of those who responded said culture isn’t defined by a physical space. Employees prefer for work culture to be reflected via helpful benefits, increased pay, clear communication from leaders and a concerted effort to promote work-life balance.
  • Not everyone likes the shift. More than one in five HR managers who responded to the survey said the shift to remote work has resulted in them spending most of their day on tasks they don’t enjoy.
  • And even amidst the shifts in work culture, 71% of office workers who responded said their companies have expectations for new employees and junior staff that don’t exist for senior employees and leadership.

Making Moves

Interface Security Systems appointed Daniel Bordeleau as its new chief people officer. Prior to joining the business security provider, Bordeleau was HR director at PepsiCo.

BioCatch appointed Gili Brudno as its chief people officer. Brudno was previously vice president of Human Resources for global services sales at SAP.


Whether you work on the top floor or the shop floor, Workplace celebrates who you are and what you can bring to your business. Discover the place where you can be more you.

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Thoughts, questions, tips? Send them to workplace@protocol.com. Have a great weekend, see you Sunday.

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