Although pregnancy is absolutely magical, carrying life comes with its own set of challenges. One major issue presents itself for every single woman who’s pregnant: not being able to fit into your clothes. Suddenly, your wardrobe has shrunk (or is gone completely), and a woman is often forced to end up borrowing ill-fitting maternity clothes from others, because these clothes can be ultra-expensive — at least, for a sweater you can only use for the next couple months.
But moms-to-be that work at the Utah-based Domo, a business management platform provider, can rest easy on that front. As Fortune reports, not only does Domo provide their employees with parental leave and a $1,000 bonus for new parents, they cover maternity clothes by granting pregnant employees a $2,000 shopping spree for maternity clothes.
One year ago, founder and CEO Josh James started offering the allowance, acknowledging the difficulties new mothers face when trying to dress professionally while carrying a child. Because the company is relatively new at not even five years old, it can’t provide as much for new parents as companies like Intel and Netflix, so the wardrobe is meant to sweeten the deal for prospective parents. (That said, it provides much more than many other companies for new parents already — it gives new moms one month leave at full pay and six weeks of leave at 66% pay.)
According to Domo vice president of human resources Cathy Donahoe, the stipend also recognizes the company’s demography and “what matters to the majority of our employees” — after all, employees have an average of three children, even though the age of the Domo workforce skews young at 34. Five or six employees have taken the wardrobe bonus. And on top of all this, a Domo employee can get this bonus every time she has a new child. “We figure if employees wait two or three years [between pregnancies], they’ll want new stuff,” Donahoe told Fortune.
“Pregnancy is an awkward time for your body,” Domo employee Erica Bartsch, who has a two-year-old and a six-week-old, told Fortune. “You’re doing this wonderful and amazing thing while going through so many changes. . .the image of what you have in your head is not reflected in the mirror.”
Bartsch took advantage of the benefit for her second child. The weight gain that comes with pregnancy dealt a blow to her self-confidence, but the wardrobe she was provided helped majorly. “The benefit made me confident about what I was putting on,” she told Fortune.
Of course, being provided a maternity wardrobe not only helped women on a stress-based level, but financially. After all, maternity clothes are a $2.4 billion market in the United States, and new mothers spend hundreds on clothes that will fit their growing bellies. But they often go towards what’s cheap and not what’s comfortable — after all, they’re worrying about a ton of other new baby-related expenses.
Bartsch was able to purchase $200 maternity jeans — something she never would have invested in before. “I would never buy those on my own,” she told Fortune. “They are so comfortable. I didn’t wear jeans in my first pregnancy; they’ve made such a big difference.”
(Image via Twitter and Shutterstock.)