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CIPD approves the government's shared parental leave plans

The CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development, has welcomed today’s renewed commitment from government to proceed with their plans for shared parental leave.

Following a consultation to which the CIPD responded earlier this year, Jo Swinson MP, the Minister for Employment Relations, has confirmed that both mothers and fathers will be able to use additional & lsquo;keep in touch’ or KIT days to support more flexible returns to work following the birth of a child.  According to the CIPD, this is a welcome move but just one of the ways in which employers will need to adapt their approaches to workforce planning in order to keep up with the rapidly changing nature of work.

Mike Emmott, employee relations adviser at the CIPD, commented, "The world of work is changing faster than ever before. In order to attract the diverse pools of talent required to succeed, employers increasingly recognise they need to offer more flexible ways of working. These proposals will allow mothers and fathers significant flexibility to come up with arrangements for shared parental leave that match their particular circumstances.

“For this to work for the benefit of both employers and employees, it will be essential that parents discuss their preferred pattern of working with their employer in good time, so that employers are able to anticipate what they need to do in response.  The proposals for extending the use of & lsquo;keep in touch’ days should offer helpful ways for employers to retain the engagement and commitment of employees, and parents the opportunity to return to work in a flexible way.  However, there may well be teething problems and challenges for managers arising from this approach. 

"The CIPD will look for opportunities to provide guidance for employers on how best to make these new proposals work.  We will also monitor implementation, highlighting good practice to employers, and raising with government any areas where the policy is creating unintended consequences or could otherwise be improved.”

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