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Do companies ever negotiate on enhanced maternity pay?

(11 Posts)
wheresmymojo Thu 01-Aug-19 23:17:08

I'm currently an independent management consultant - with current client on a piece of work for 15 months.

Absolutely love working for them. Today one of the Directors of the business area I work in asked if I'd be interested in a perm role and to come back with the kind of salary I'd expect to see if it is do-able.

They already know I'm TTC as I've had 2 x weeks off work due to miscarriages.

All great!

Except we are hoping to TTC and have children next year and to do this I would need enhanced maternity pay. I'm not sure of their exact policy but in this industry it's usually required that you've been in your perm role for at least a year before you can have enhanced pay.

I'm the main breadwinner (by a long way) so enhanced mat pay is definitely needed; however this is a large global business and so I'm not sure how much leeway (if any) there is to negotiate this kind of change to a contract?

I'm used to negotiating working hours/pay/allowances but does anyone know if large employers will negotiate on this kind of 'standard' policy?

OP’s posts: |
Alislia17 Fri 02-Aug-19 04:27:51

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flowery Fri 02-Aug-19 06:24:51

In a big business, unlikely. They have a policy and they need to apply it consistently. Are you hoping to negotiate the maternity pay itself up, or the length of service required down? The latter might be possible on the basis you’ve been working for them (although not employed) for a while already.

But salary is where you’re more likely to be able to negotiate, so it might be a case of negotiating that up enough that you’d be able to save for maternity leave.

I assume as you are currently TTC as a consultant with no maternity pay, your plan if you don’t move to an employed role is to rely on savings?

Cuppa12345 Fri 02-Aug-19 06:29:33

Check the wording of the policy. It might be that 15 weeks before your edd, you need to have 6 months service with them. In practice, that means as long as you aren't pregnant on your first day, then you'd be eligible.

If as you suspect, it's a year service before 15 weeks before your edd, you need to just wait 6 months in the role before falling pregnant. Might be worth it!

MaggieFS Fri 02-Aug-19 06:34:54

My very large company wouldn't, however you can but ask! What would your plan have been to cover maternity if you were still independent?

WinnieTheCat Fri 02-Aug-19 06:41:11

Are you sure they offer enhanced maternity? Many companies only offer statutory

FossiPajuZeka Fri 02-Aug-19 06:42:03

If you didn't take this opportunity and stayed being a consultant you would have no enhanced maternity benefits obviously.

Tbh I'm your position I wouldn't peg my negotiating position on maternity benefits at all - you don't know how long it's going to take before your ttc is successful and you may qualify for the standard package by then anyway.

Instead, bump up the starting salary you intend to ask for by a chunk - say 20% more than you were planning to suggest. Whatever that number is, right from the start of the new job pretend to yourself that you have to live frugally and put every penny you can into savings. Then for a minimum of 9 months (assuming you aren't pg the day you start) but possibly a year or two (depending how the ttc goes) you will be building up a decent stash to live on when you are on maternity leave. If ttc takes so long that you actually trigger qualifying for their standard enhanced benefits then you can blow the savings on a big holiday and you will be permanently benefitting from your chutzpah in pushing for a higher starting salary.

I was ttc during job hunting once and got stressed about the fact that I would be losing the enhanced maternity package if I was successful. However in reality the enhancement I was losing (8 weeks @ 100% salary vs 6 weeks @ 90%, then 16 weeks at 50% rather than just SMP) was actually only worth a pretty modest number of thousands. A number which if it came down to it would be relatively trivial to access another way eg by saving up or by rearranging the mortgage to release a lump sum of equity.

Moondust001 Fri 02-Aug-19 07:00:34

I can't see why any company would want to increase the amount they pay you to not be working for them, if you see what I mean. There is no incentive. And if they make an exception for you, then arguably they will have to make one for everyone. The point of policy is not to do that.

You do seem to be making assumptions that they pay enhanced maternity pay anyway - an industry standard, and what they actually do are not the same thing. Plus, and I have to be honest, what you think they may be assuming about your plans and what they are assuming are also not the same things. Think about it - you go in there telling them that you'd be planning, almost immediately, to be taking maternity leave and you'd also like to be paid more than they have to pay you.... would you offer someone a job on that basis, like their work or not?

You need to do what everyone else needs to do - cut your cloth. If you know that you want to have children you need to financially plan for that now You need to be aware that your financial commitments in the future will change and that you will not have the disposable money that you are used to. And if you are the "breadwinner", then the answer is obvious - it is you that goes back to work whilst your partner becomes the primary carer.

LaurieFairyCake Fri 02-Aug-19 07:05:05

Can you just ask for a higher salary so you can save more before ttc?

itwasalovelydreamwhileitlasted Fri 02-Aug-19 07:18:32

Tricky one as if another employee found out and they weren't offered it it could cause a lot of problems?

If your actively ttc shouldn't you have already looked into moving into a permanent role?

Wishihad Fri 02-Aug-19 07:25:11

You can always ask.

I work for a big company and the answer would be no. Because we need to apply it consistently and wouldnt so it for on and not the other.

Personally, I would ask for a merger salary. Not only will you be able to save more. That's will impact you more for longer.

What is the enhanced mat pay package they offer? Because I am betting that get paid more of every month, will out weigh EMP within a few years.

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