Maternity Leave Checklist
There are so many details to consider before the birth of your baby. Your to-do list extends from the nursery to the office. Here's a few of the things you need to consider as you make your transition from working woman to working mother.
Six Months Prior to your Due Date
Review maternity leave and work/life benefits offered by your employer
Notify your supervisor of your pregnancy. Ensure him/her of your intent to continue your present performance.
Four Months Prior to Your Due Date
Consider child care options for returning to work. (Childcare Overview)
Schedule your annual review for a date prior to your maternity leave if your review date occurs while you are maternity leave.
Three Months Prior to Your Due Date
Visit or meet with child care providers.
Write a work plan for distributing your duties while on maternity leave
Discuss with co-workers and supervisor a plan that will ensure the work in the office gets done in your absence.
Create a maternity leave plan. Will you work from home a few hours a week? Do you prefer not to be bothered at all?
Discuss your maternity leave plan with your employer.
Two Months Prior to Your Due Date
Review important dates and deadlines that will occur while you are maternity leave.
Develop a work plan for your return following maternity leave and discuss with your employer.
Begin educating co-workers on regular tasks that occur within your work day.
Make sure your insurance and employee benefits are up to date and ready for your delivery.
Schedule your annual review and evaluation prior to your maternity leave in the event that your review date falls during maternity leave.
One Month Prior to Your Due Date
Assemble a contact list with important vendor information, client phone numbers and service providers for your replacement.
Create a roadmap of your office. List where important information can be found, secrets to your filing system and important notes for your replacement.
If you plan to work from home during maternity leave, it's time to set up a home office.
Establish a home email account.
Take co-workers and supervisor through your typical day.
Two Weeks Prior to Your Due Date
Notify clients and others you interact with regularly of your pending maternity leave
Remove any personal property from your office that is private or valuable.
Take home your rolodex and a copy of your company directory for emergency purposes.
Create a communication plan for telling your office friends of your new baby.
One Week prior to Your Due Date
Activate an auto response reply for your business email address.
Thank your employer and co-workers for their support.
Exploring flexible work options
Working out a telecommuting proposal
Maria Bailey is the mother of four and Founder of BlueSuitMom.com, a Website for working mothers and the companies who employ them. She is the author of "Marketing to Moms: Getting Your Share of the Trillion Dollar Market" (Prima, 2002) and host of Mom Talk Radio.