More than a third of parents (34%) claim balancing childcare responsibilities with work has negatively impacted their health or mental wellbeing, according to a new report.
In a study of 1,123 workers by Willis Towers Watson, only 27% of workers said their employer currently offers childcare support or benefits. A third said their employers fails to pay maternity or paternity leave above the statutory minimum.
“Although the government’s new Tax-Free Childcare scheme may be helping to address the financial burden, this is just one piece of the jigsaw,” said Mike Blake, Director, Willis Towers Watson Health & Benefits. “For some parents, additional benefits such as further financial support, access to a workplace nursery or provision of flexible working practices, may prove invaluable.”
According to almost a third of workers (30%), employers should be offering more childcare support – a statistic that rises to 42% for those aged between 25 and 34. Blake has pointed out that doing so can make good business sense.
“Supporting working parents can have a positive impact for organisations in a number of key areas,” he said.
“By looking after their financial and emotional wellbeing, incidents of sickness absence can be reduced and productivity can be increased through improved levels of motivation and engagement. Furthermore, support for this important workforce demographic can reinforce an organisation’s reputation as an employer of choice and, in turn, help boost recruitment and retention.”