Supporting Employees Who Adopt Benefits Businesses, Too

Adoption friendly business

Business owners certainly want to be successful, but many may not consider adoption assistance as a means to attain that success. According to an article in Forbes, a recent study by Baylor University reports that when an organization supports its employees who wish to adopt, the adopted children, adoptive parents, and the company itself all benefit. The research comes from a survey of almost 600 married couples who had adopted children within the past two years. The Baylor report notes that the roughly 100,000 adoptions that take place in America each year account for half of all yearly adoptions worldwide. Everyone wins when companies support these adoptions. In fact, the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption generates a yearly list of organizations it deems the most adoption-friendly, and many of the list’s top businesses provide their employees adoption assistance that reaches beyond emotional support.

Adi Gaskell reports that these organizations provide support that “[includes] paid or unpaid leave, financial reimbursement for any adoption-related expenses, flexible work arrangements, and general managerial support for employees as they go through the adoption process.” Baylor researchers identified a reciprocal relationship between employers and employees that results from such support. An organization supports employees as they navigate the adoption process; the employees adopt children and create strong bonds with them; and happy adopted children bring joy to their adoptive parents, who in turn, reward their employers with a deepened commitment to the organization. This level of loyalty can result in a “sense of belonging that can even extend to wanting to spend the rest of one's career with that company,” Gaskell notes.

Researchers hope that their work will encourage more businesses to support their employees who are hopeful adoptive parents. These organizations would join technology company NVIDIA, American Express, Snap Inc., Bloomberg, and Capital One among the ranks of the Dave Thomas Foundation’s list. Baylor researchers reason that if more employers realize that “organizational support for adoption can be an alternative form of corporate social responsibility,” their actions could ultimately result in the goal of “helping reduce the number of children needing to be adopted.” Indeed, the report mentions that more companies are recognizing the positive roles they might play in their employees’ adoption journeys, and “they have increasingly responded.”