Fast Four Questions: Thomas Pippos Champion for Change & CEO, Deloitte

Thomas Pippos, Champion for Change and CEO at Deloitte, discusses the benefits of creating a workplace that supports the balance of caring and working, along with ways by which they are supporting employees to take care of whānau, in our Fast Four Questions feature.


What work are you doing to promote Deloitte as a family friendly workplace?

A modern parental leave policy that encourages and supports shared care, combined with the availability of flexible work arrangements, are key in promoting Deloitte as a family friendly workplace. In addition to robust policies around parental leave and flexible work, visibly and actively supporting members of the team, across all levels of the organisation, to be able to prioritise family time is very important. This can be as basic as ensuring that important meetings and events are not scheduled during common family-intensive times, e.g. school drop-off, pickup, breakfast or dinner times.

Why does Deloitte see parental leave being important to inclusion in the workplace?

At Deloitte, we appreciate the importance of creating an environment where all of our people are treated with respect and feel valued. A modern parental leave policy is crucial to this goal of achieving an inclusive workplace. Supporting parents and families, in a way that represents the realities of parenting today and best suits parents’ needs, is very important to the wellbeing and success of our people.

How is Deloitte encouraging more ‘fathers’ to take parental leave or work flexibly?

This is an area where we can do more. In saying that, we do actively support initiatives encouraging more men to take parental leave and/or work flexibly. A good example of something that we have now started is the ‘Kiwi dads’ initiative that is aiming to highlight fathers on parental leave through a photography exhibition. Deloitte Australia supported the equivalent initiative across the ditch and we have supported the launch of ‘Kiwi dads’ here. Encouraging and supporting Kiwi dads taking an equal share in caregiving roles will also help ensure more women are represented at all echelons of Kiwi organisations.

We will also be showcasing this issue as we roll out our new policy. Our recently revised parental leave policy offers up to 8 weeks of paid partner leave. This aims to foster a more inclusive workplace at Deloitte, where all of our people have the opportunity to participate in parental leave in a way that best suits their needs. The policy recognises the role that the firm has to play, along with government and wider society, in reducing potential barriers to shared care.

What key considerations would you note for organisations who are reviewing their parental leave policy?

  1. Understanding the link between parental leave policy and diversity and inclusion
  2. Ensuring clear objectives of the policy, e.g. ‘to accelerate gender equity through providing opportunities for shared care’
  3. Make sure the policy addresses the real needs of parents, both mothers and fathers, as per the reality of modern parenting and best practice
  4. Provide clear definitions and write the policy in plain English