Offering Employee Child Care

Raising a family with a full-time job is filled with challenges just to keep a respectable work life balance. As an employer you have the chance to offer an on-site child care facility or you can make a deal with a local provider at reduced rates for the children of your employees. One of the best ways to tell your employees that you want their talent to stay at your company is to appreciate the position they are in as parents.

As you ponder over whether or not to offer something like this to your employees, you will of course be looking at the costs of any plan. There are options available besides on-site care to consider. Let's look at each option, the pros and the cons, and the anticipated costs to both you and your employees with each option. Which would most employees prefer?

On-Site Care

Offering an on-site child care center is going to demand a large investment of resources. If you are in a position to do it, you will attract more talented people and gain their loyalty. When parents know their children are being cared for nearby, they are going to be more productive. Now, in many cases it would be cost prohibitive to offer an on-site child care facility. There is a possible way around that.

Making an arrangement with a local daycare provider might be a better option for you. This could be set up in a number of ways. You could absorb the cost or split it with your employees. You could offer different levels of child care subsidy for different levels of employees. For instance, you could offer entry-level workers a 50% subsidy while offering up to 100% for others. This is a perk like any other perk, only this perk has implications beyond a pay raise.

If you know of a reputable child care chain that might be willing to work with you on reduced rates for your employees that is also a nice benefit to offer. Even if it is a 25% reduction, that is still money in their pocket. It also helps when your employees have something like this in common. They can share stories about the child care provider and feel comfortable that they share the challenges of parenting with their co-workers.

Talented Parents

When any boss lets their workers know that they understand the importance of each employees duty to their children it is going to raise employee morale. Not only will you attract better workers, you will keep the best. Very few people will walk away from an employment opportunity that includes an option for child care. This can attract moms who had not planned to return to the workforce for a while. There are plenty of very talented people that leave their jobs to raise kids. If companies are more kid and parent friendly, more parents can showcase their talents inside your company.

Whether or not you can afford to provide child care, you can offer a family friendly workplace. By understanding that parents need sick days just to care for kids, or by asking local daycare providers to provide information packets, and/or discounts for sending business their way, you show your workers that you empathize and support them any way you can. They will notice and it will be appreciated. Reach out to some day care companies and offer some trades for products and services in exchange for free or discount child care. Run some incentives for a week of free day care for an employee. Even if your first step is a small one it will still speak volumes.

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