Behavioral health problems cause more than 200 million missed workdays each year in the United States at an estimated cost of $105 billion, according to the National Business Group on Health. At the same time, employers are struggling with rising healthcare costs. A key question for such organizations is whether they can improve their employees' health and well-being and ultimately experience lower overall health-care costs. Strong new evidence suggests they can - by helping employees balance work and family-care responsibilities through work-life supports.
In a recent study of more than 4,000 full-time working parents across the United States with children under the age of 13, respondents whose employers offered work-life supports including work-site child care, adult care, back-up care and flexible work arrangements were 31 percent less likely to report lost productivity due to stress during the past month and reported 25 percent fewer personal health concerns due to stress.
This article by Kim Callaway and Lucy English, published in WorkSpan magazine, explores the study results and offers tips for how to make work-life supports successful at your company.