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Oliver Wyman Extends Paid Maternity Leave Across India, the Middle East, and Africa and Appoints New Wellbeing Lead

Oliver Wyman, a global management consulting firm and a business of Marsh McLennan (NYSE: MMC), has extended its maternity leave and has also appointed a Wellbeing Lead for its India, Middle East, and Africa (IMEA) region.


The Wellbeing Lead is a new role for the company that is designed to promote health and happiness among employees and bolster retention. Meanwhile, the increase in parental leave now means all new parents in the IMEA region are eligible for six months of paid maternity leave, or eight weeks of paid paternity leave. This change ensures consistency across the entire region, bringing the maternity leave offering in line with what was already available in India. The policy applies to offices in the UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Qatar, and India.

Additionally, returning mothers will be offered an additional eight paid days off in the first eight weeks after they return. Employees returning from maternity leave will also be given the option to take a 12-month ‘no-travel guarantee’ to help with a smooth transition back to work, while new fathers will be offered flexibility regarding travel arrangements.

Meanwhile, many of Oliver Wyman’s newly renovated offices, such as its Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Doha offices, also feature multi-purpose wellness and nursing rooms to help new mothers with their return to the workplace. Overall, Oliver Wyman is designing its offices to suit the adjusting needs of today’s hybrid workforce – with ample collaboration areas and breakout rooms, for instance.

The company has also implemented a program called BOOST 2.0, which aims to provide support to employees before, during, and after their parental leave to ease the transition to parenthood while supporting their career. A key element of the program is that the support continues into the later stages of parenting – it offers regular check-ins for parents, a buddy system for support, trainings, workshops, and more.

The newly appointed Wellbeing Lead, Clare McDonald, will be responsible for managing the wellbeing of employees across the IMEA region. McDonald joined Oliver Wyman in 2013 and has worked across the company’s Talent Management function for the past 10 years – she will combine this essential experience with her qualifications in mental health, first aid, personal training, yoga, and nutrition coaching. McDonald will act as the company’s central point of contact for Wellbeing across Oliver Wyman IMEA, and her focus will be on employee support and engagement, data collection and analysis, and designing programs to enhance employee wellbeing.

“To drive progress in human capital acquisition and retention, companies must go beyond traditional compensation models and foster safe, equitable, and healthy work environments. People are at the heart of what we do at Oliver Wyman and the wellbeing of our employees and providing everyone with support along their personal journey is a key part of our value proposition. We are thrilled to have Clare take on this new role, the first of its kind in our business, and we know she will approach it with a lot of passion, as well as support from leadership. Leading with heart isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s also good for business,” said Isabell Stobwasser, Director of Talent for the IMEA Region.

“Drawing upon my own health journey, I hope to support and inspire my Oliver Wyman colleagues to thrive – physically, mentally and emotionally, both inside and outside of work,” said Clare McDonald, the new Wellbeing Lead. “Management consulting is a demanding industry, and prioritizing wellbeing is a challenge that needs to be looked at holistically.”

Oliver Wyman has made significant investments globally in support of its Talent Value Proposition initiative, an internal program aimed at increasing employee satisfaction and retention. The pillars of this proposition encompass various initiatives, including an exchange program, MBA study support, and a Golden Passport program that provides consultants and specialists with opportunities to work across multiple regions. Additionally, the company also places strong emphasis on its Employee Resource Groups, which serve as spaces for employees to connect, foster allyship, and receive support. These include Women at Oliver Wyman and Family Life at Oliver Wyman.