“Companies are always looking at ways to attract and retain talented employees. Nowhere more so than in Silicon Valley, where America’s leading technology businesses live or die by the brain cell,” The Financial Times editorializes. “Now, two of the district’s most influential residents, Apple and Facebook, have taken this so-called ‘perk arms race’ to a new pitch. As part of a drive among traditionally male-dominated Valley firms to attract more female talent, both are offering benefits to women who devote more of their childbearing years to building their careers.”
“Egg freezing is an expensive and relatively novel treatment. Costs typically amount to $10,000 at the minimum for each round of egg-harvesting, plus up to $500 a year for storage. Both companies have undertaken to cover costs up to a cap of $20,000,” The Financial Times writes. “This is financially generous and may be a perk that some women will welcome. But if it is open to all female employees and not just to those experiencing fertility problems, there are doubts about the wider message that it sends. Benefits are social indicators. When companies offer entitlements such as paternity leave and assistance with childcare, they reflect what we value as a culture. The offer to assist with egg freezing sends just such a signal. It implies that women should consider deferring childbirth if they want to do well in their jobs.”
“Setting aside the invasive and uncertain nature of the treatment that is on offer, it implies that employees should adapt their lifestyles to fit in with the desire of companies for a disruption-free office,” The Financial Times writes. “The concern is that once a company begins to offer this as an off-the-shelf benefit, the message will go out that this is not so much an option as a preferred solution. Given the intensely personal nature of the decision when to start a family, this feels both intrusive and creepy.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: The road to Idiocracy is paved with good intentions.