In a competitive work environment, employers are increasingly focused on improving employee satisfaction and retention. One of the best ways to set yourself apart as an employer is to provide attractive benefits for working parents.
Below, we discuss what employers need to do to change their company culture for working parents, and list the top five benefits for working parents that improve productivity and happiness levels.
Here’s a Tip for Employers: Give Employees What They Need Most
Working parents know what they need from their employer to make them successful at work and at home: robust benefits to allow them to be a great parent and a effective employee. They want the flexibility to work from home if their child is sick. They want employer-sponsored child care options such as backup care, care reimbursements or onsite or near-site options. But most of all, they are looking for employers that will genuinely support their journey as parents.
The pandemic made many working parents, especially mothers, realize that having a stable job isn’t enough. Employers need to provide benefits and resources for working parents to help them thrive and be successful. Companies unwilling to listen to what employees need most to do their jobs well won’t see retention levels improving.
As we know, women were hit hardest by the pandemic. These employees left the labor force in their millions to focus on caregiving responsibilities. The participation of women in the labor market is estimated to be at a level that was last seen during the 1980s. Many of these employees have made it clear that they won’t return to companies that don’t offer access to child care or other family-friendly policies.
To stay competitive when hiring and improve talent retention, you need to prove that your company is inclusive of working parents.
Caregivers Need Company Support to Perform Well. Here’s Why
Being a working parent requires you to juggle many responsibilities. Yet, it’s hard to do this without any support from family, friends, and employers. A recent Workplace Wellness Study by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) found that six out of every 10 employees struggle to balance work and caregiving. Poor work-life balance is one of the main reasons working parents struggle to keep up.
Without vital resources and benefits for working parents, these employees are more likely to:
- Experience increased levels of stress and burnout.
- Have less time to spend with their family
- Deal with significant financial stress
- Tap into vacation days to accommodate caregiving responsibilities
- Have trouble concentrating when working
- Struggle to perform well in work
- Not have enough money to cover caregiving and child care costs.
Without support, these employees are at a higher risk of experiencing burnout and decreased employee morale. After all, what incentives do these employees have if their workplace isn’t parent-inclusive? If you want working parents to perform well, you need to build a parent-friendly workplace.
Benefits for Working Parents That Improve Happiness and Productivity
Vivvi’s State of Working Parents study found many benefits to boost employee retention. These include flexible work arrangements, family leave policies, childcare support, and employee well-being resources.
Flexible Hours and Remote Work
Flexibility will be key to improving employee satisfaction in the coming years. Working parents rank this benefit as one of the most sought-after priorities when searching for jobs. Employees need to have flexible schedules as a caregiver. They need to have options for working asynchronously or remotely.
Parenting-relating issues can impact an employee at any time. For example, they may have to look after a sick child or leave the office to attend a parent-teacher conference. Having flexible schedules and remote work options will be invaluable to these employees. Flexibility should be a core company value and should be woven into your company’s culture.
Without a company culture that supports working parents, your company will never be capable of satisfying these employees. Working parents want to feel seen and heard.
A parent-inclusive company should have members of senior leadership that are visible parents. They should offer employee resource groups (ERGs) that provide support and mentoring opportunities. They should value mothers returning from maternity leave by giving transition support. These companies should acknowledge and praise every aspect of caregiving.
Robust Family Leave Policies & Benefits
Benefits for working parents will never be complete without robust family leave policies. Working parents should be given the time they need to care for their children and to welcome a new member of their family. This leave policy should be compensated fairly and robust for both mothers and fathers.
Many companies also ensure that family leave policies include same-sex families and bonding leave for non-primary parents. Additionally, a company’s family-friendly benefits should include health benefits for the whole family.
Provide Child Care Services
A lack of accessible child care is a problem that many working parents face daily. Employer-sponsored child care solutions can resolve this issue. Many family-friendly companies provide their employees with child care stipends or access to high-quality child care services. Benefits like these tell working parents that they are valued at the company.
Support Working Parents’ Well-being
Parental burnout is a real issue that many employers are facing this year. If you wish to see these employees thrive, you need to support working parents’ emotional well-being by giving them tangible well-being benefits and resources. The easiest way to do this is by fostering a company culture that puts mental health first.
Wellness programs, ERGs, mental health days, and frequent manager check-ins are some of the resources that can be beneficial for working parents.
Help Your Employees Thrive With Employer-Sponsored Child Care
While there are many benefits for working parents that will be vital for employers to implement in the coming years, child care support is key. Many working parents will struggle to achieve a work-life balance with access to affordable child care.
At Vivvi, we help employers support their employees exactly where they are in their parenting journey. We partner with companies of all sizes to make access to full-time, part-time and backup child care a reality for working parents. Our experienced childcare providers work with your business and employees to provide a solution that benefits everyone.