In a previous post, I touched on the employee benefits the people crave; one of those benefits was the desire for more family-focused benefits. In 2015 a report on “Workplace Trends” detailed that more and more businesses were actually looking to build family-oriented employee benefits into their existing benefits portfolios. This is a positive trend, founded in the reality that society has shifted into a place where “two career” households and single-parent households are not out of the ordinary. Traditional benefits packages are no longer equipped to work for these different family structures.
Companies are beginning to understand the importance of allowing their employees work-life balance, and a huge part of work-life balance is having work benefits that allow for that balace in the first place. A healthier work-life balance lends itself to happier, more engaged employees, which leads to higher employee retention and overall job satisfaction. Potential employees also love to hear about companies that have family-friendly policies; those benefits are a huge selling point when a company is looking to acquire new talent.
There are a lot of different family-friendly benefit options, some more niche than others. This blog will be the beginning of a mini-series detailing some of the most important family-oriented benefits companies can (and should) start incorporating into their plans. Our first focus will be:
Newborn & Prenatal Benefits
Many companies already offer maternity leave (and paternity leave is slowly trickling into the United States’ work culture) but there is much more to having a baby than current benefits provide for.
When the parent(s) of a newborn have full time jobs, child care and babysitters become an immediate necessity. To combat that new pressure that parents are facing, companies can build partnerships and create a network with reliable childcare centers in the area. Many care centers even offer group rates for companies because of the guaranteed business.
Another option companies can explore is having an on-site childcare center built into the campus. Daycares and even pre-school centers on-site would greatly benefit employees with younger children.
This is a general realm where a great deal can be done by the employer; the amount of company resources available will greatly dictate what goes into this realm of employee benefits. But, at the very least, companies can work to partner with reputable prenatal classes for expecting parents, and support groups for both expecting and new parents. Mental support and education makes a huge difference in terms of stress and overall mental health for new parents.
“suggest that to encourage and increase the rate of continued breastfeeding, workplaces should establish dedicated breastfeeding rooms and maintain a comfortable and clean environment.”
It’s now required by law that companies accommodate nursing moms with a reasonable break time and a place that is not a bathroom to pump. Companies should work to make sure that they are accommodating with clean, comfortable, user-friendly spaces for their staff.
Check back soon for more interesting Family-Oriented benefits!