A ground-breaking workplace initiative launched by Caltex Australia three years ago has led to a 25% increase in the number of women successfully transitioning back to work and developing their careers after having a baby.

The leading Australian fuel supplier launched its BabyCare package in 2012 in response to a common trend of female employees who, while very well-supported during their parental leave, found that the practical and financial challenges when transitioning back to work made it too hard to achieve their goal of balancing their careers and family.

Caltex Head of Capability, Performance and Reward Alena Mackie said the initiative – which includes a 3% quarterly bonus (12% total per annum) and practical assistance with finding appropriate childcare – had helped boost the number of female employees returning to the workplace after having a child.

“Our analysis shows that new mothers are not only returning to work at Caltex but choosing to stay with us once they do, confirming once again the importance of focusing on the transition back to work just as much as providing parental leave,” Ms Mackie said.

The BabyCare package was just one of many initiatives that had contributed to Caltex’s recognition today with an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality (EOCGE) citation from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA).

“Caltex has taken some big strides in terms of improving its gender equality over recent years, but our journey continues,” Ms Mackie said.

“We are particularly pleased with our negligible gender pay differential of 1.1% on a like-for-like basis and the significant progress that we’re making towards our goal to increase the number of female senior leaders across our organisation.

“In 2013, one in every five senior leaders at Caltex was female – we reached our goal of improving this to one in four last year and are now on-track to make it one in three in 2016.

“To continue increasing the representation of women in senior positions, we are strengthening our senior female talent pipeline by providing appropriate development and promotion opportunities, continuously monitoring key gender metrics and committing to innovative initiatives such as the BabyCare package.”

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