Criteo is a global commerce media company headquartered in France with 35 offices worldwide. We spoke to Criteo’s Global Benefits Director, Courtney Hadden, about how their employees asked for fertility benefits, why her team advocated for them, and how they implemented the benefits to their global workforce.
Criteo aims to cultivate a welcoming and safe environment where employees feel empowered to speak up about their needs. So when employees heard about other companies implementing fertility benefits, they didn’t hesitate to ask about getting the same support at Criteo.
“Fertility and family-forming benefits were becoming a more popular ask from U.S. employees. Supporting the health and safety of our people is a top priority, so we felt it was important to explore options related to these benefits,” said Courtney Hadden, Criteo’s Global Benefits Director.
In addition to being inspired by employee inquiries, Hadden was aware of an increasing number of states that were implementing mandates on providing fertility coverage. Currently, 17 U.S. states require insurance companies to cover or offer some coverage for infertility treatment.
As a private company with a plan that was not fully insured, Criteo was not subject to those requirements. Still, it was evident that the popularity and adoption by employers of fertility benefits would continue to grow and would be increasingly sought after by employees and candidates.
The team decided to start their search by approaching their existing insurance plan to learn about their options. “Our insurance came back with a small increase to add fertility benefits to our plan,” said Hadden. “But we found that their offering lacked the breadth of services and inclusivity requiring an infertility diagnosis.”
An infertility diagnosis is an inability to get pregnant after at least 12 months of sexual intercourse. Coverage requiring an infertility diagnosis excludes same-sex couples and people pursuing parenthood alone. The Criteo team wanted their program to include all employees, so they expanded their search beyond their insurance plan and started looking at fertility benefits providers.
The smooth implementation and ease of ongoing administration, coupled with Carrot’s stellar expertise internationally, were strong contributing factors for securing approval to offer the benefit to all of our employees.
With inclusivity top of mind, the team continued their search for a comprehensive benefits package. Their checklist included services like care navigation, educational resources, and support for a diverse range of family-forming journeys.
Research, and a recommendation from their broker, showed that Carrot could meet Criteo’s needs and desires. The team valued that Carrot offered various services like adoption, egg freezing, and gestational surrogacy and was inclusive of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and relationship structures.
Carrot’s care navigation and educational resources also caught the team's eye. “We liked that people who might not end up needing services or were just starting the journey could get reliable and trusted information in one source,” Hadden said. Carrot members have access to experts — from nutritionists to doulas to lactation specialists — who can help them understand and navigate their unique experiences.
When the Criteo team announced that U.S. employees had access to Carrot, the reception was immediately positive. In a relatively short amount of time, employees outside of the U.S. began hearing about this new benefit. From Brazil to Japan to Germany, employees began to ask if the Carrot benefit was something that could be expanded to their countries.
“Most people work cross-regionally, so it is common to be asked by employees why their country may or may not have something another country has,” said Hadden. “We're continually evaluating our benefits to determine what makes sense and is feasible to implement more broadly.”
Hadden said that the experience of Criteo’s U.S. employees and Carrot’s capabilities outside the U.S. made expansion possible. “The smooth implementation and ease of ongoing administration, coupled with Carrot’s stellar expertise internationally, were strong contributing factors for securing approval to offer the benefit to all of our employees,” she said.
Rules and regulations about fertility vary significantly worldwide — and change constantly. For example, in Singapore, where Criteo has offices, there are some limits on specific paths like egg freezing, which is limited only to those with medical needs, such as a patient with cancer preparing for chemotherapy. However, beginning in 2023, Singapore will allow elective egg freezing for people under 35, regardless of marital status. In situations like these, care navigators at Carrot help members understand these changes and take advantage of the available resources by connecting them with Carrot-vetted providers.
Another important factor to Criteo was Carrot’s ability to support languages. Language support is available in all 120+ countries where Carrot services are available. Members can receive live translations during chats, and some chats are offered in local languages.
The results: Exceeding expectations
All 3,000+ employees now have access to the benefit, and the Criteo team is excited about the results so far.
Currently, 14% of employees have registered for the benefit. And 5% of employees have created Carrot Plans — a personalized plan created by experts that guides members every step of the way as they explore or begin their fertility options.
After the launch of the global benefit, international employees quickly took advantage of the offerings, as well. “The benefit launched on a Friday, and by Monday, 8% of our non-U.S. population had registered, and within one month, 12% had registered,” Hadden said.
The Criteo team noted that providing a consistent experience to all employees was important to them. So far, they’ve seen employees from many countries using Carrot on various fertility journeys.
Across their workforce, the team has seen similar, positive reactions to the benefit as in the U.S. on how it has helped employees begin their journeys. A member from Spain said speaking with Carrot gave them “more clarity and reassurance about the financial part of my Carrot Plan.”
Overall, Hadden said they are excited about supporting their employees and look forward to seeing how they continue to use the Carrot benefits.
“It's a highly valued benefit,” said Hadden. “And has been gratifying to have wholehearted leadership support and commitment to helping our employees grow their families.”
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