One More (Big) Victory For Marissa Mayer And Yahoo

Yahoo's revenue is on the rise. Its stock value is surging. Its homepage and photo service Flickr sport flashy new designs. The mega-blogging platform Tumblr is in its war chest. And now, a year after she became Yahoo's CEO, there is another feather Marissa Mayer can stick in her cap: Yahoo has become one of the best companies for work-life balance.

Yahoo is number 16 on Glassdoor's ranking of the top companies for balance, based on employee ratings, the first time the company has cracked the top 25. It's a particularly significant accomplishment, since Mayer has been relentlessly scrutinized --and criticized -- ever since she banned telecommuting.

More: Marissa Mayer And Sheryl Sandberg: How They Differ

People cheered when Mayer's pregnancy was announced -- the first ever pregnant CEO of a Fortune 500! Then squabbled over her two weeks maternity leave -- what kind of example is that for other women! Denounced her ban on telecommuting -- but mothers like telecommuting! And then sneered over the nursery she built right next to her office -- seriously?

But ultimately, Mayer is a businesswoman after results. She doubled paid maternity leave to 16 weeks and extended paid paternity leave to eight, and offered new parents $500 a month for things like laundry, groceries and take-out. She introduced free breakfast and lunch for all, and eight weeks of unpaid leave for employees who clock five years at the company.

"The most prolific and giving company I have ever worked for," wrote one Sunnyvale, Cal. software engineer on Glassdoor, where other employees are also raving about the "employee friendly benefits," "open culture," and "turnaround story" under Mayer. In the company's first-quarter earnings call, Mayer bragged that 14 percent of all hires in the past three months were "boomerangs" -- old Yahoo defectors returning to the company.

More: Best Buy Joins Yahoo, Kills Flexible Work Program

This ascendancy is at a time when employees' work-life balance is declining overall. On Glassdoor, the average rating in this category has declined from 3.5 out of 5 in 2009 to 3.2 so far in 2013 -- a trend echoed in a recent survey by the Families and Work Institute and the Society for Human Resource Management. While more employers are adding "perks" that help employees work more, such as the "flexibility" to work from home late at night, they're steering away from benefits like extended paid leave. For example, only nine percent of American employers provided full pay for childbirth-related disability last year, the survey found, down from 17 percent in 2005.

The top 5 companies for work-life balance on the Glassdoor list are SAS Institute, National Instruments, Slalom Consulting, and MITRE. AOL actually made the list for the first time too this year, at number 13.

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Really wish something as awesome as this would happen to me!

August 27 2013 at 11:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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