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Childcare Benefits More Than Pay for Themselves
[March 26, 2024]

Childcare Benefits More Than Pay for Themselves

  • New Report from Moms First and BCG Reveals that US Employers Investing in Childcare Benefits Experience Positive Returns on Investment Ranging from 90% to 425%
  • Retaining as Few as 1% of Eligible Employees Can Cover the Cost of Childcare Benefits for All Who Are Eligible Within the Company
  • Employer-Provided Childcare Benefits Can Help Employees Avoid More than Two Weeks of Absences Annually

WASHINGTON, March 26, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Just 12% of all US workers have access to childcare benefits through their employer, a figure that drops to 6% for people who work part-time or are in the lowest income quartile. However, as revealed by a landmark new report being released today by Moms First and Boston Consulting Group (BCG), titled The Employee Benefit That Pays for Itself, companies that effectively invest in childcare benefits are seeing positive returns on investment ranging from 90% to 425%.

The research behind the report includes financial analysis, personal interviews, and survey responses from nearly 1,000 US-based employees at five companies in industries including e-commerce, retail, hospitality, financial services, and supply chain management: Etsy, Fast Retailing, Steamboat Ski Resort, Synchrony, and United Parcel Service (UPS). The study covers an array of childcare benefit strategies, including onsite or near-site facilities for regular use, backup services such as last-minute or drop-in care, and stipends for parents to help pay for their own arrangements. In all five scenarios studied, returns are positive.

"The lack of quality, affordable childcare in the US is a crisis for working families, 40% of whom are in debt because of the cost of childcare. Our economy depends on care—without it, women annot work," said Reshma Saujani, founder and CEO of Moms First and a coauthor of the report. "Until now, we lacked the data that demonstrated a clear return on investment for companies that provide childcare benefits. That ends today. This report with BCG is proof that childcare benefits not only pay for themselves, but also make financial and strategic sense, creating an advantage for businesses that step up and make the investment in their employees."

Many companies have held off offering childcare benefits, perceiving them as strictly a cost center; however, according to the report's findings, companies that effectively invest in childcare benefits are not only seeing positive returns on investment but also finding that retaining as few as 1% of eligible employees can cover the cost of providing childcare benefits for all of those who are eligible within a company. The study also finds that childcare benefits can help individual employees avoid more than two weeks of absences annually, boosting employee productivity. Further, up to 86% of respondents said they were more likely to stay with their employer because of their childcare benefits, and as many as 78% said the peace of mind resulting from the benefits has given their careers a boost.

"Our study provides evidence that US employers adding childcare benefits to their employment packages are seeing quick and lasting rewards in recruiting, retention, and productivity. This result was consistent across a range of industries, and for both salaried and hourly employees," said Emily Kos, a managing director and partner at BCG and a coauthor of the report. "One striking example of how the benefits pay for themselves is tied to something as basic as showing up. Parents miss far less work when they have reliable care and more options to manage childcare disruptions. That's good for employees and for employers."

The report can be viewed here.

Quotes from executives at four of the participating companies—Fast Retailing, Steamboat Ski Resort, Synchrony, and UPS—can be viewed here.

Media Contacts:
Moms First: Aly Ferguson—[email protected]
BCG: Eric Passarelli—[email protected]

About Moms First
Moms First is a national, nonprofit organization transforming our workplaces, communities, and culture to enable moms to thrive. Our grassroots movement of more than one million moms and supporters is dedicated to advancing women's economic freedom, uplifting the vital work of moms in our society, and building the power to win the public and private sector investments moms need and deserve, including childcare, paid leave, and equal pay.

About Boston Consulting Group
Boston Consulting Group partners with leaders in business and society to tackle their most important challenges and capture their greatest opportunities. BCG was the pioneer in business strategy when it was founded in 1963. Today, we work closely with clients to embrace a transformational approach aimed at benefiting all stakeholders—empowering organizations to grow, build sustainable competitive advantage, and drive positive societal impact.

Our diverse, global teams bring deep industry and functional expertise and a range of perspectives that question the status quo and spark change. BCG delivers solutions through leading-edge management consulting, technology and design, and corporate and digital ventures. We work in a uniquely collaborative model across the firm and throughout all levels of the client organization, fueled by the goal of helping our clients thrive and enabling them to make the world a better place.

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SOURCE Boston Consulting Group (BCG)

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