Apple and Facebook are reportedly offering to pay for their female staff to freeze their eggs in a bid to boost the number of women staff by allowing them to focus on their careers without sacrificing the opportunity to have children later in life.
The companies are said to be covering up $20,000 for the procedure and annual storage costs.
Apple recently introduced new benefits including extended maternity leave, adoption assistance and infertility treatment while Facebook offers surrogacy assistance and paid parental leave for female and male employees.
In a statement, the tech giant said “We want to empower women at Apple to do the best work of their lives as they care for loved one and raise their families.”
This extraordinary perk has been described as a game changer for women who have traditionally had to choose between their careers and starting a family while their male counterparts are climbing the corporate ladder.
Jennifer Tye, head of marketing for Glow, a technology company offering women services to control their reproductive health, applauded the new policies.
“Egg freezing gives women more control,” she said.
But critics say the move is just a ploy to persuade women to stay with the company and other commentators have suggested the companies should instead focus on more flexibility and support for new parents.