HPE rolls out 26-week paid parental leave in SA

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President Ntuli, MD of HPE South Africa
President Ntuli, MD of HPE South Africa

Information technology company Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has introduced a 26-week paid parental leave for its employees in South Africa.

Announcing the initiative today, the company said the paid leave was to support new families and was part of its Work That Fits Your Life program.

HPE said this was part of the rollout of a number of new employee programmes to enrich personal wellbeing and work/life balance.

In a statement, the company said: “HPE employees in South Africa are now benefiting from the introduction of 26 weeks of paid leave for new parents—both mothers and fathers—as well as parental transition support, retirement transition support and wellness Fridays.”

President Ntuli, MD of HPE South Africa, explained further: “At HPE in South Africa, we want all of our employees to be reaching their full potential in their careers. That means supporting them as they grow their families as well.

“We are very proud to be rolling out this global initiative for our employees. By investing in our highly skilled and motivated workforce, we will cement HPE’s position as an employer of choice globally and here in South Africa.”

With the initiative, HPE said it had enhanced the paid parental leave policy to allow new parents, with at least one year of HPE service, to benefit from 26 weeks of paid leave within the first 12 months after the birth or adoption of a child.

According to South Africa’s new parental leave law, which took effect on 1 January 2020, all parents – including fathers, adopting parents, and surrogates – are entitled to 10 days paid parental leave. Mothers who give birth are entitled to four months' unpaid maternity  leave in terms of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA). 

Parental transition support

HPE has also implemented parental transition support which is a flexible work arrangement policy that offers new parents the opportunity to work part time for up to 36 months after the birth or adoption of a child.

Kim Field, HR director at HPE SA commented: “As this competitive benefits package shows, HPE’s working culture values employees’ lives both inside and outside of the office.

“HPE is a leader in employee care globally. By focusing on wellness and flexibility we are able to provide a working environment where staff are able to develop and thrive even in times of transition at home.”

Other benefits announced by the company include support for existing families and eligibility for the extended paid paternal leave benefit, which is being retroactively applied to parents with children born or adopted on or after May 1, 2019.

Furthermore, employees approaching retirement will be given the opportunity to work part time to help adjust to the lifestyle changes of retirement “while transferring their knowledge and/or serving as a mentor to other HPE employees”, according to the company.

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