Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

In a recent blog article Dr John Bethell, Director of Wavelength International, describes how maternity leave is seen as a real positive for the firm.

Dr Bethell said, “My blog article is mainly about women in the medical workforce but I could not help reflecting on my own company’s experience with working mums. With a predominantly female workforce we have a significant rate of maternity leave. Whilst there are some short-term inconveniences associated with replacement, over the long haul I am convinced that our business is better for it.”

Claire Ponsford, co-Director, was the initial driver of favourable maternity leave policy at Wavelength. “Coming from the UK I was surprised to find that maternity leave was not mandatory in Australia. Long before it became a requirement we created a favourable maternity leave policy for Wavelength."

She adds, “My own parenting experience convinces me that, not only are working mums as effective as their colleagues, but that we as a company have a moral obligation to protect the rights of our workers who wish to have a family.”

Kellie Egan, HR Director states, “One of our main HR challenges is long-term management of our recruitment pipeline. When staff take maternity leave this gives us a great opportunity to identify new talent immediately, with the knowledge that we have a fully trained expert returning to the business in the future. This helps significantly with workforce planning and creates lots of options for the business.”

She adds, “In our experience returning mums are a real asset to the business. They return with renewed enthusiasm, are highly committed to the organisation, require minimal training or induction and tend to be very focussed on getting their work done efficiently.”

Wavelength International has a total of 60 staff and in the last 12 months 10% of the workforce has taken maternity leave. Almost all of them intend to return to work within a year.

Wavelength International offers paid parental leave to full-time and part-time employees who have completed two years of continuous employment and are the primary caregiver. Our paid parental leave is paid over 14 weeks, the first six weeks represents 90% of their base salary and the following 8 weeks is at 50% of their base salary. For males with two years continuous employment and are not the primary caregiver, they are entitled to one week’s paid parental leave.

Dr Bethell states, “At Wavelength we seek out high quality employees and particularly value loyalty. We believe that our approach to working mums makes us very competitive in the marketplace especially given the size of our company.”

Contact Profile

Wavelength International

Wavelength International is a niche multi-award winning medical recruitment company based in Sydney, Australia. Founded in 1999 by Co-Directors Dr. John Bethell and Claire Ponsford, the company focuses on excellence in recruiting doctors for its Australian, New Zealand and international clients. The business has grown an average of 30% per annum since launch and now has over 60 FTE staff. Wavelength is a 2011 BRW "Best Place to Work".

Dr. John Bethell graduated from Aberdeen Medical School in 1990. Since then he was spent most of his professional life in Australia, firstly as a junior doctor then starting his first medical recruitment firm in 1994. After a brief period working at Morgan and Banks in Sydney, Dr. Bethell launched Wavelength with co-founder Claire Ponsford in 1999. As a pioneer and market leader of medical recruitment in Australia Dr. Bethell has seen the industry grow and mature over two decades. His knowledge and opinion are widely sought and respected. He has authored a number of articles and appeared on expert panels debating industry matters.
Bianca Walton
P: 02 8353 9000


maternity leave,working mothers,working mums,hr policy



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