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Procter, TriHealth rank tops for Moms

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Procter & Gamble and TriHealth are two of the region's employers listed in Working Mother magazine's annual list of the top 100 places to work.

The magazine's CEO said there's been an improvement in mother- friendly benefits in corporate America.

Working Mother CEO Carol Evans, who authored the book "This Is How We Do It: The Working Mothers' Manifesto," said that in order to retain female employees, a growing number of companies are offering customized schedules.

"There are some very, very creative ideas, and this is all related to what we saw in the past, with women dropping off the edge of a cliff, when they said it's either working full time or not at all," Evans said.

This year's list includes 18 new names, representing some churn, and the magazine cites growing concern among companies that they will lose qualified female employees if they do not upgrade their benefits.

"Our country needs women to have babies, our companies need women's brainpower and time," she said. "Those two things going together really demand that companies wake up to this new culture."

The magazine used five main criteria as the basis for its judgments: flexibility, leave time for new parents, child care, elder care and the number of women occupying top jobs.

The top 10 companies that best satisfied the five criteria were: Abbott Laboratories; Bon Secours Richmond Health System; Ernst & Young LLP; HSBC USA Inc.; IBM Corp.; JPMorgan Chase & Co.; Patagonia Inc.; PriceWaterhouseCoopers LLP; Principal Financial Group, and S.C. Johnson & Son Inc.

IBM and Johnson & Johnson are the only companies that have been on the list every year since it was initiated 21 years ago. IBM offers new mothers the option to take up to 144 weeks of leave, Evans said.

The Boston Consulting Group is one of 18 companies new to the list, for which the magazine solicits applications that consist of 550 questions. Among the consulting group's benefits are three months of paid maternity leave and emergency child care.

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Other area employers on the list include: Citigroup Inc., Deloitte & Touche, Ernst & Young, Ford Motor Co., General Electric Co. and PNC Financial Services Group Inc.

(C) 2006 The Cincinnati Post. via ProQuest Information and Learning Company; All Rights Reserved

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