Caring for Employees Who are Caring for Others

elder care benefits

Whether you know it or not, elder care is affecting your organization. It isn't necessarily a common topic of conversation around the office, but it's costing in ways you may not realize.

What exactly can you do to help? For employees caring for their parents or relatives, an elder care benefit can be life changing. Not only does it offer reliable care when their regular care is unavailable, it can help you, too. How?

It Solves a Huge Productivity Problem:

In today's workforce, many people - one-in-six employed Americans in fact - are caring for an elder or disabled relative. And they each miss an average of 6.6 work days every year. "That one-in-six number says your company is going to be affected, no matter who you hire, where you're located, and what business you're in," says Dan Henry, chief culture officer at Bright Horizons.

It Creates Benefit Equity Across Generations:

Child care gets much of the attention these days. But how are you catering to the needs of your baby boomer and Gen X employees? Yes, they might have children (and need child care), but at this point in their lives, they might also be providing care for a parent or relative. With 63% of employees in the sandwich generation, it's key to your organization's success that you're paying attention to their needs and providing them with supportive resources.

It Fills the Distance Gap:

Distance can make the already stressful and challenging responsibility of caring for parents or relatives even more difficult. Today, 15% of all caregivers are long-distance..a percentage that's expected to double by 2020. Chances are, you have employees who are part of this group. And they may not talk about their long-distance caregiving trials and tribulations, but they're silently struggling, and are more likely to report costly emotional distress (47%) than local caregivers.

The Bottom Line:

Stress weighs on your employees' minds and affects their productivity - and it can stem from a lack of elder care benefits. But when you support your employees, help them support their families, and encourage a supportive culture in the office, everybody wins.  Your employees will be happier, less stressed at work, and better able to focus on their jobs, knowing that their family members are receiving the care they need. And since happy employees are more productive, have more positive attitudes, and tend to stick around longer - that works well for you, too.

Written by: Bright Horizons Blog Editor

About the Author

Bright Horizons logo on yellow background

The Bright Horizons Blog Editor frequently posts on the real solutions that meaningfully support employees, advance careers, and drive the world’s leading brands. The Editor curates the latest news, trends, and challenges facing HR pros because your time is scarce. Follow the Bright Horizons Blog to receive this insight in your inbox.