And finally…Goldman Sachs to provide home nannies to keep staff at their desks



Investment banking giant Goldman Sachs has announced plans to offer its British staff free nannies when their children are ill and carers for elderly parents in order to keep them at their tasks.

The move seems to be part of the firm’s attempts to reform its long-held image as the global financial sector’s most brutal enforcers of the industry’s harshest working and employment practices.

The domestic support initiative follows on from the provision of creches at its offices, and funds for free gender reassignment surgery and fertility treatment for employees.

And the US bank, which has around 6,000 employees in the UK, has also previously offered to ship working mothers’ breast milk home if they are posted overseas.

Its latest policy includes paying for carers for adult family members who are suffering from mobility problems or who need help unexpectedly.

The programme will include:

  • In-home nanny care for mildly ill children
  • In-home care for adult family dependents who are experiencing short-term mobility issues, or who need assistance unexpectedly

Eligibility

  • 20 days per employee, per dependent, per year
  • Dependents include children, spouses, civil or domestic partners, adult children, parents, parents-in-law and grandparents, regardless of their location in the UK

Cost

  • Back-up childcare at the onsite Children’s Centre will continue to be free
  • In-home care is based on employee co-pay of £4/hour

Sally Boyle, Goldman Sachs European boss of human resources, said: “The policy is a result of ongoing conversations with staff on what would be helpful both inside and outside of work.

“Providing care to children, elderly parents or other dependants, is a significant part of many employees’ lives. It’s important we recognize the challenges that can come from balancing these commitments with work and do everything we can to support our employees and their families when the need arises.

“The firm recognises that back-up care is an essential benefit when your usual care arrangements break down. Beginning today, I am pleased to announce an expansion to our Back-Up Care programme in the UK, adding to the existing back-up childcare provision at the onsite Children’s Centre.”

Stressing the that the initiative was driven by a benevolence rather than productivity, Ms Boyle added: “We’re prepared to invest whatever it takes. This is about us wanting to look after our employees, not wanting to chain them to their desk.”