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Applications for '100 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces'
Deadline for submission is March 1, 2010

By SHRM Online staff  1/25/2010
 

The not-for-profit Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption wants to know about adoption benefits U.S. companies are providing to their employees in 2010. The foundation is asking employers to participate in its fourth annual 100 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces survey.

The deadline for entry has been extended to March 1, 2010. The foundation's resulting list of the nation's 100 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces will be released in September. The list is determined by an analysis of a company's adoption benefits, such as the amount of financial reimbursement and paid leave available to employees who adopt. The foundation announces America's top 100 employers, the top 10 by size, and the leaders of each industry.

"Every year, we welcome new companies to the list and watch others increase their benefits to climb in the rankings," said Rita Soronen, executive director of the foundation. "We are always looking for that outstanding company with an exceptional adoption benefits policy. The list also allows us to track trends in employer support for adoption."

Representatives from companies with adoption benefits can apply by completing the foundation's 10-minute survey at www.AdoptionFriendlyWorkplace.org.

Soronen has these suggestions on how employers can be adoption-friendly:

Promote the cause of adoption.

Create an adoption-friendly culture to celebrate families formed through adoption.

Be flexible with time off and work schedules.

Educate and inform employees about the adoption process.

Connect employees with each other by creating an internal adoption network.

Provide post-adoption resources.

Free Resources Available

Those employers who don't offer adoption benefits can order at no expense an adoption benefits tool kit from the foundation's web site.

On the same site, employers may order free of charge a new booklet, Beyond Benefits, that includes tips and real-world examples for employers and HR managers on how to be "adoption friendly." For example:

One Ohio-based manufacturer provides confidential consultation with an adoption specialist that is free of charge to employees.

Another past Top 100 Adoption-Friendly company has an adoptive parent network of associates, created by associates for associates. The network shares common experiences and provides support for adoptive families.

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