March 10, 2016

Is a Period Leave Policy a good idea for your business

A south-west based firm have decided to implement a ‘period leave’ policy in to their Employee Handbook to try to improve productivity and create a happier working environment to allow its employees to thrive.

 

The new policy will enable female employees to take flexible work hours around their menstrual cycle with the hope being that by providing this flexibility will enable more productivity whilst in their cycle.

 

Coexist, based at Hamilton House is a community space that enables people to live, work, collaborate and help each other to provide each other and the community a better world. The employee 17 females and 7 males.

 

Bev Baxter, Director at Coexist says that she often sees female employees suffer significantly during their menstrual cycles and regularly sees female employees doubled over with pain. She went on to say that female employees often feel guilty about their periods and are very uncomfortable at bringing this up with their employer as they will be seen as less committed.

 

Bev views this an unfair and says that any employee suffering significant physical pain will always be encouraged to go home.

 

A recent study, as detailed on the nhs.uk website finds that 14% of female employees frequently reported being unsuitable to carry out their work duties because of period pain.

 

Bev Baxter believes their period leave policy will actually increase overall productivity by allowing women flexibility during their ‘winter state’ when they need to keep their bodies nourished and warm leaving them refreshed for their spring section of the cycle that follows immediately after a period when Bev claims females are 3 times more productive.

 

The policy means that time taken off during their period would not be classed as sick leave and no doctors/sick note will be required to be produced which means if any HR Software is in use then this will need to be updated accordingly.

 

Several potential issues could come from this type of policy; Will employees take advantage of this and see it as additional holiday they can take? Is this policy also fair on male members of staff?

 

So if you are planning to implement new policies it’s important that all aspects are considered before actioning it in your Employee Handbook.

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