In fact, 70 percent of mothers with children under 18 participate in the labor force, with over 75 percent employed full-time. They are often juggling professional and personal responsibilities, while also trying to maintain a sense of sanity in their everyday life.
As an employer, you can support working parents with benefits that relieve stress and foster work-life balance, which ultimately serves your organization with more productive and happy employees.
Here are four benefits that will help working moms and dads in your organization thrive:
Flexibility. Most companies already offer some form of flexible work hours, but this is particularly important for parents (and other caregivers). If a child gets sick or there is an opportunity to chaperone a field trip, moms (and dads) need to have the ability to flex. Our State of Workplace Empathy study found that 97 percent of employees believe flexible work hours is a benefit that demonstrates a company’s empathy. This can help them thrive in the professional world, as they feel their personal lives are getting priority as well.
Paid parental leave. While FMLA provides employees with unpaid, job-protected leave, many companies are expanding related benefit offerings for parents. This typically includes longer, broader leave and most importantly, one with a paycheck attached. Providing working parents with the opportunity to spend time with their newborn without worrying about finances or job security can be a highly valued benefit that helps with recruitment and retention.
Back-up care. According to “The Metlife Caregiving Cost Study: Productivity Losses to US Business,” absenteeism attributed to family caregiving costs US employers more than $5 billion a year. For many working moms, younger children are cared for by day care services, or a babysitter such as a nanny or a family member. When issues with childcare arise it can become a challenge. Back-up care allows for employees to find a subsidized nanny for the day, whether it’s because school is cancelled for a snow day or the sitter calls in sick. With back-up care, working parents can keep up with their meetings and professional responsibilities, while not worrying over child care.
Adoption assistance. Adopting a child can cost up to $40,000, which is no small sum. Employers can ease the financial burden, and ultimately stress, by providing adoption assistance. This is a fairly low investment for an organization, as a relatively small portion of the workforce takes advantage of the offering, yet it allows you to support employees who are pursuing adoptive parenthood. As this is a more unique offering, make it a priority to communicate it to your workforce so your employees know it’s available.
Want to learn more about employee benefits?