Four months' paternity leave for full-time staff at Facebook's global offices

Facebook will be giving its full-time working fathers at its global offices, including in Singapore, up to four months of paid paternity leave from January.
Facebook will be giving its full-time working fathers at its global offices, including in Singapore, up to four months of paid paternity leave from January. PHOTO: AFP

Social networking giant Facebook will be giving its full-time working fathers at its global offices, including in Singapore, up to four months of paid paternity leave from January - a progressive move, said human resource experts.

Previously, the tech giant extended this privilege, which staff can use all at once or throughout the year, to its employees in the United States. The company's full-time working fathers in Singapore were previously given only one month of paid paternity leave.

"I think that the move is very, very generous," said Mr Ronald Lee, managing director of human resource firm Primestaff Management Services, who added that most firms here offer just a week.

However, Mr Lee said that smaller companies would be hard- pressed to do the same as they do not have the resources.

Eligible working fathers here are entitled to one week of paid paternity leave funded by the Government and may get an additional week of paid paternity leave if their employers voluntarily agree to provide it.

Eligible working fathers here are entitled to one week of paid paternity leave funded by the Government and may get an additional week of paid paternity leave if their employers voluntarily agree to provide it.

The extra week was introduced in August. For companies that take up the call, the Government will pay for the extra week of leave.

Facebook has 34 international offices with nearly 12,000 full-time staff around the world. The firm did not disclose how many people they have hired in Singapore.

Their move comes just as the firm's chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said last Friday that he would take two months of paternity leave after his daughter's birth.

Facebook staff at the Beach Road office here welcomed the move. The company's vertical head, South-east Asia, Mr Matthew Hulen, whose wife is expecting their second child, said staff started applauding when the news was announced.

The American, who has lived in Singapore for over three years, said that he would take at least part of the four months off.

"I am not quite sure if I will take all of that time - I will take as much as I need to spend quality time with my family," he said.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 27, 2015, with the headline 'Four months' paternity leave for full-time staff at Facebook's global offices'. Print Edition | Subscribe