Father holding his child and makes silly faces



A reliable back-up child care program can help to ensure that disruptions on the home front don’t lead to disruptions at work.

When children are sick, schools close for snow days, or an elderly relative needs immediate care, employer-sponsored back-up care enables employees to stay focused on their jobs rather than needing to scramble to find last-minute care.

Bright Horizons provides comprehensive solutions for back-up and emergency child care, relieving stress for working families and enabling employers to ensure business continuity.

8 Common Reasons Working Parents Need Back-Up Care

  1. Children who are home sick
  2. Nanny cancellations or sick days
  3. School holidays and summer vacation
  4. Weather emergencies
  5. Schools closed for teacher development
  6. Lack of child care options while on a daycare waiting list
  7. Relocated employee without family nearby to call in a pinch
  8. Before- and after-school gaps in care time for parents with long hours

The need for back-up child care

For working professionals, caring for young children while advancing their careers can feel overwhelming at times. Workers are often forced to skip meetings, miss deadlines, or sacrifice billable hours to deal with child care emergencies.

Balancing an elementary school schedule with a professional work week is not easy, but it’s essential for parents of children who are still too young to be on their own. According to research, nearly half of all working mothers have had to dial back their careers to accommodate their child’s needs. Implementing back-up daycare programs is an effective way for employers to make their workplace more family-friendly and to recruit top talent, while enabling productive and sustained careers for employees.

Back-up care with Bright Horizons

As a premier provider of corporate daycare centers, Bright Horizons provides back-up child care that can help employees solve child care gaps and enable employers to better support their workers with families.

When employees experience a disruption in their normal care routine, they can contact our 24-hour call centers staffed with experienced consultants who can help to arrange the best care for their children. The employee’s time is limited to the phone call – Bright Horizons staff takes care of the rest, preventing the stress and distraction of child care gaps from affecting business productivity.

Back-up child care with Bright Horizons includes:

  • Center-based care at any one of our 3,500+ child care locations, providing convenient emergency care in a location operated or directly contracted with Bright Horizons.
  • In-home care for more individualized care at critical moments, provided by experienced caregivers from Bright Horizons or other top-rated providers.

The business impact of a back-up child care program

Lost productivity due to child care gaps is costing businesses billions of dollars. With back-up child care, companies can keep disruptions from impacting productivity and continuity, minimizing unplanned time off and keeping employees focused on their work.

Back-up child care has long-term advantages as well, saving employees from the burnout that comes from managing both a career and a family as well as the conflicts that arise from negotiating time off. Accommodating the needs of family schedules is a priority for many workers, and providing backup child care is one of the best ways that organizations can retain and reward employees.

Another back-up care advantage is the ability to recruit highly talented candidates who have children or are who planning to become parents. Offering back-up child care as a benefit can be a highly effective recruitment tool, attracting top talent required to move the business forward.


What is back-up care?

Back-up child care is an easily accessible, emergency care service that support employees when child care gaps occur due to unforeseen events such as school closures or sickness.

How does back-up child care help employers?

With many employees missing work or losing focus because of emergencies at home, providing back-up care options enables employers to minimize absenteeism and boost productivity in the workplace. Back-up child care is also a highly desired benefit that helps employers recruit and retain top employees and emerging leaders.

How does back-up child care aid families?

Workers with children struggle to meet the demands of home and work, but back-up child care can make it easier to balance the two. When a nanny calls in sick, when school is closed for teacher trainings, or when summer vacation comes around, back-up daycare helps parents seamlessly find high-quality care for their children without skipping a beat at work.

Does Bright Horizons offer back-up care for elderly dependents?

Yes. Bright Horizons can connect workers to caregivers who specialize in elder care when an elderly relative becomes sick or injured. Whether an elderly dependent lives around the block or across the country, Bright Horizons can swiftly connect workers with the care their family needs by simply placing a phone call.


Family care benefits have never been more important. See how Bright Horizons can support your team.

Bright Horizons offers more than a traditional daycare. It helps parents looking for education-based Boston daycare, NYC daycare, Chicago daycare, Washington, DC daycare, Los Angeles daycare, San Francisco daycare, Seattle daycare and local daycares in other cities. It also provides back-up daycare and elder care, employer-sponsored child care, employer tuition assistance, workforce education, and student loan repayment programs. Bright Horizons Global Headquarters is located in Newton, Massachusetts, USA.