I’m ashamed to admit that I was once on a job for nine whole months before I found out what their maternity leave policy was. Before accepting the offer, I was pretty sure I knew about all of the important information, like the salary I would be paid and how many vacation days I was entitled to, but I was completely clueless about what would become of my job should I get pregnant. Unfortunately, I wasn’t alone in my ignorance.
According to a recent survey conducted by Fairygodboss–a website that serves as a Yelp-esque platform that allows women to leave reviews about their employers—80% of women are in the dark regarding their company’s policies concerning maternity leave when they accept job offers. On top of that, one-third of women reported being disappointed when they finally found out the specifics of those policies. Even worse, nearly 3/4 of women are “very or extremely uncomfortable” asking employers about their parental leave practices.
In addition to providing everyday women with a platform to share their experiences with Fortune 500 companies, Fairygodboss also provides a maternity leave resource center, which lists the maternity leave policies of these companies since so many employers are less than forthright concerning this matter.
“For reasons that escape us, there is a veil of secrecy and confusion that surrounds maternity leave policy,” Fairygodboss co-founder Georgene Huang.
According to Huang and her co-founder, Romy Newman, the purpose of the maternity leave resource center is “to bring transparency to the dialogue between [female] employees and employers so that we can support positive changes to the workplace and unleash the potential of working women everywhere.”
Other interesting Fairygodboss features include the Work Confessions section, which allows women to speak openly on their experiences in the workplace, and articles that are loaded with helpful advice for working women.