Schneider Electric has announced an updated family leave policy in North America. Introducing more paid time off for family-oriented leave, the new policy is designed to help Schneider Electric’s current workforce achieve a better work-life balance.

Technology companies worldwide are continuing to seek new ways to foster and retain great talent within their organizations and are making significant changes to attract a new generation of innovative thinkers. Schneider Electric’s new policy introduces a comprehensive benefits package to significantly improve its workers’ ability to maintain their career, while supporting their families. Effective today, employees based in North America are eligible for:

  • 12 weeks of fully paid leave for primary care-giver (birth or adoption)

  • 2 weeks of fully paid leave for secondary care-giver (birth or adoption)

  • One week of bereavement for immediate family

  • One week of leave to care for elder or critically-ill family member (starting January 2018)

  • Two floating days that can be used for cultural activities

“We strongly believe being the best partner for our customers starts with being the best employer for our people. We’re committed to promoting a favorable work environment where our employees have more control over their work and personal life responsibilities,” said Annette Clayton, president and CEO, North America Operations, Schneider Electric. “Our refined family-leave policy ensures our employees have more paid time off when they need it, allowing them to avoid having to make a choice between work and their family. The well-being of our staff is our highest priority and we’re proud to champion this issue as part of our goal to be best-in-class in every area of our organization.”

Schneider Electric also made family leave policy and medical plan updates earlier this year in support of the company’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees. Its paid family leave policy not only provides paid time off for primary and secondary care givers regardless of gender, but also supports LGBT community members who choose to adopt. Additionally, Schneider Electric’s medical plan now covers gender reassignment surgery as part of its comprehensive benefits package.

Furthering its diversity and inclusion initiatives, Schneider Electric is also collaborating with iRelaunch, a leader in career reentry programming, to introduce an internship program in the U.S. focused on helping women return to the workforce. iRelaunch is working directly with Schneider Electric to launch an internship program that will focus on careers in supply chain/logistics and engineering. The six-month pilot program is scheduled to launch this month.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, men make up 14 percent more of today’s workforce in comparison to women, largely attributed to women leaving the workforce to raise their families. Schneider Electric is taking initiative now to encourage and help women smoothly resume their careers by developing paid reentry internship programs for women who are returning from a voluntary career break after more than three years and have more than five years of work experience in a manufacturing field prior to their break. The types of roles in the program include quality engineer, materials analyst, manufacturing engineer, manufacturing supervisor and support function roles.

"It has become increasingly difficult for women to reenter the workforce after a career break, whether that’s due to child rearing or fulfilling other family obligations. Our collaboration with iRelaunch helps women better maintain their careers to ensure we as an industry can tap into female talent from both traditional and non-traditional career paths,” concluded Clayton.