Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:52 am
Ellenbecker Investment Group Inc., in Pewaukee, implemented its ‘babies at work’ program nearly ten years ago. The program was designed as way to help parents of newborn babies, transition back into the workplace more easily.
Ellenbecker Investment Group Inc. in Pewaukee implemented its ‘babies at work’ program nearly 10 years ago. The program was designed as a way to help parents of newborn babies, transition back into the workplace more easily.
“We started the program when one of our key employees was having a baby,” said Julie Ellenbecker-Lipsky, vice president of the company. “It was a way for us help our employees make the transition from maternity leave to the work place more easily. It was important for us to make sure our employees knew they didn’t have to choose between being a good parent or being a good employee, we wanted to give them the opportunity to do both.”
The program allows parents of newborn babies to bring their child to work after the baby is at least four weeks old, Ellenbecker-Lipsky said.
“Of course we encourage new moms to take the full 12 weeks, but after four weeks at home with their new baby they can start coming back to the office.”
It varies depending on the location of an employee’s desk, but babies usually set up camp right next to their mom or dad’s work space, she said.
Babies can remain at the work place up to six months.
“The first few months with a newborn are the hardest time for parents to leave their child in a day care facility,” Ellenbecker-Lipsky said. “Many business owners have told me a lot of companies have experienced a decrease in employee productivity because they spend a lot of time worrying, checking up on their kids on internet or leaving work early or late.”
Ellenbecker Investment Group has seen the exact opposite response, she said.
“New (parents) have been so grateful for the opportunity, we find that they never drop the ball or miss a deadline,” Ellenbecker-Lipsky said. “They often times go out of their way to show that this opportunity is appreciated. We’ve been pleased with the program from both a productivity standpoint, but also for what it does to bring our employee family closer together.”
Leadership at Ellenbecker Investment Group has written a policy in the employee handbook and routinely checks in with employees to make sure everyone is comfortable with the babies being in the office.
“We have a written policy that indicates to employees that the company has the right to ask parents not to bring their babies in if they become a disruption in the workplace,” Ellenbecker-Lipsky said. “So far that hasn’t been a problem, and everyone loves having them here, even the employees without children.”
Clients of Ellenbecker Investments also enjoy meeting the babies and the company has never had an employee leave fulltime employment to stay home with their children, she said.