In an effort to appeal to the female workforce and retain new moms as employees, IBM will soon provide an alternative to the despised practice of "pumping and dumping." Rather than seeing breast milk go to waste during business travel, the company will provide a new service that ships milk directly home in temperature-controlled containers.
Although mothers are granted privacy and breaks to express milk during work hours, traveling moms know all too well the difficulty of pumping on the go. Breastfeeding employees are often forced to throw their milk away after pumping — or pay exorbitant fees to ship it overnight — but the new program provides a sustainable option. "We are going to experiment with this and see how many women are interested," Barbara Brickmeier, vice president of benefits at IBM, said. "As long as it appeals to a segment of our population and they feel that they can better balance their work and home, we will continue it."
Not only is IBM looking out for its female employees, but the company also offers six weeks of paternity leave for its working fathers. The growing number of companies striving to improve leave benefits is a telltale sign of a changing work industry. With more and more companies joining in on the trend, we're seeing a minirevolution for working parents.