"I've worked here for 15 years, and the company does make efforts to promote women, but I'd say the family policies are equally rough for men and women. The culture is generally not very family-friendly, BUT it truly depends on your manager and department. I've been relatively lucky over the years, but I've had friends who have been in ridiculous situations (being made to take off an hour of vacation if they had to go to a school play - even though a professional and not hourly employee). The culture trends toward the old school chained-to-your-desk from 8 to 5 mentality, but again, it greatly varies with who you work for. I've been awfully lucky over the years.
They do try to promote a diverse workforce. The job is very stable. It's hard to get fired from Southern Company (or it's sub companies - Alabama Power, Georgia Power, Gulf Power, Mississippi Power, Southern Nuclear, Southern Power and Southern Company Services). The provide a nice bonus, they are fairly good about career paths and they provide a nice pension, so there are good points about working here.
Regarding the parental leave policy, it has been ridiculously antiquated for decades. They recently performed a study showing how many female engineers they were losing because of it, so they've made some much needed changes. They now offer 14 fully paid weeks as of Jan. 1, 2016. This is for new parents and adoptive parents as well. Before you had two weeks and could then use your vacation and sick leave and then go unpaid. Some managers hated to see their employees in rough shape, so would offer extended sick leave throughout whatever you agreed with them at 60 percent.
Management is male-dominated and very southern old-school. They are making, what I consider, honest efforts to diversify, and I think in not too long we will see the fruits of that, but for now it's run by wealthy men with stay at home wives with full time help who take care of everything.
At the end of the day, we will see that diversification (and already see it a bit), but it's a sad fact that most women who come up in the company through management are harder to deal with. The attitude is very much "I didn't have all these 'privileges' and you shouldn't either, which is disheartening. For the most part, male managers are much more family-friendly.
The new policy is nice and workable, but I hope over time, as an industry-leader and a Fortune 500 company, they will become more generous."