Nothing is more precious than the time when moms and dads are bonding with their new babies. For many women returning to work or staying at home becomes tough choice. Some employers are beginning to see the advantages of making that decision a little easier.

Some companies that are able to do it are increasingly providing more flexibility so that parents can spend more time with their new babies. Some big companies are leading the charge to extend parental leave to 15 weeks or more. And they’re doing this apart from coercion from Washington.

Last week Johnson & Johnson announced that it is offering new mothers, fathers, and adoptive parent eight additional weeks of fully paid parental leave for a total of 15 weeks (17 weeks if mom has a C-section). On top of that, the time doesn’t need to be taken consecutively, so people can enjoy flexibility during the early baby development time. And they’re making it retroactive to any employees who became parents since last May 2014 forward.

J&J is not alone. Google offers 18 weeks and Facebook offers 17 weeks. Accenture is doubling its paid maternity leave to up to 16 weeks. International company Vodafone will allow new mothers to get at least 16 weeks of paid time off and can work reduced hours at full pay for the following six months. How does this stack up to the marketplace? The average length of paid maternity leave among the best 100 companies according to a working mom magazine is just 7 weeks.

Companies know that if they want to retain good, young talent, especially Millennials who are in their childbearing time, they can do so by offering competitive benefits and flexible work environments. If a company can afford to do this and does it to retain the best workforce, it is an excellent idea. Washington should stand back and allow companies to make these decisions based on their own resources.

The Washington Post reports:

Like Johnson & Johnson, a few other large companies have been significantly expanding the time off they give new parents, especially as the fight for top talent grows fiercer in a more competitive job market.

Yet in addition to providing longer leaves, some companies are focusing as well on how to ease the return to work, as Johnson & Johnson has by allowing women to split up their expanded leave. Such organizations are offering new mothers access to a more family-friendly schedule—if on a temporary basis—as part of a more holistic maternity leave package.

Jennifer Owens, editorial director of Working Mother Magazine, says that 23 percent of the 100 companies on its list of the most family-friendly workplaces have some kind of “automatic phase back” benefit. She describes these programs as offering new mothers the ability to return to work on a temporary part-time schedule as part of their official maternity package, rather than having to negotiate for the arrangement separately or secure a manager's approval.

Making such benefits an explicit part of the maternity package also helps foster the idea that softer re-entries to the workplace are an accepted norm, rather than an exception to the rule, says Anne Weisberg, senior vice president at the nonprofit Families and Work Institute. “When you’ve been out on leave, you’re feeling very vulnerable,” she said in an interview. Companies can mitigate that by saying, “You know what? We expect you to do this."

Some criticize these policies for lulling companies into complacency instead of proactively helping women get back on track for promotion. However, companies are doing their best to provide flexible policies for women who have children, that is a good thing.

The key to this story is that companies are making these business decisions because they want to retain talent not because of a diktat from Washington, D.C.

Last year, Democrats introduced the “Family and Medical Insurance Leave act” or the FAMILY Act that would dramatically expand the FMLA by creating a federal entitlement program to provide paid leave to qualified workers. Workers would be entitled to 60 days of family and medical leave during which they would receive two-thirds of their average pay.

Sweeping laws like this try to address a small problem with a one-sized-fits-all approach and would impact existing leave programs, discourage flexible work arrangements, and reduce employment opportunities for women. Such laws are also unfriendly to business—not every business can stay afloat if it is forced to offer benefits it can’t afford.

We’re going to see companies continue to act upon their own. As we explain, we don't want to see further government intrusion into the work place–and, if companies are left to their own devices, they will likely do as much as they can to retain good employees.