How paternity leave can change the workplace

About 15 percent of American businesses have a paternity leave policy in place.

About 15 percent of American businesses have a paternity leave policy in place.

Every day, businesses are always thinking of ways to improve productivity and work culture. Some changes may be directly related to daily tasks, while others may improve an employee's mental health. Due to legislation, there are some requirements all American enterprises have to offer to their full-time staff, while others are an optional benefit — paid paternity leave is considered a non obligatory perk.

Offering new fathers the chance to spend time with their child can be beneficial to the newborn's development, but it can also help new parents figure out how to balance parenting roles in the household. When expectations are established between both parties, fathers can tweak their schedules accordingly to make the most of their work day and family time, the Atlantic explained.

The source cited research from the World Economic Forum, which found that business cultures with the highest productivity had a paid paternity leave policy — the U.S. ranked in fifth place without a universal rule in place.

"Only 15 percent of American companies currently offer paid paternity leave, suggesting that our businesses see time off for new dads as a paid vacation with few beneficial consequences," Atlantic contributor Arlie Hoschchild wrote.

In fact, even in the case of maternity leave, employers are not required to provide new mothers with paid time off. Research has shown that there are potential long-term advantages of implementing such a policy, including strengthening employee retention and improving the family dynamic, because both parents are equally involved in the child's development.

Businesses that have plans to update their maternity or paternity policies can ensure that all workers will be able to see the changes within the company's HR software system. This way, payroll workers can easily process such requests and update the company's compensation packages with ease.