Magazine article Workforce

Oh, Baby! Now What?

Magazine article Workforce

Oh, Baby! Now What?

Article excerpt

How many times have employees called in, either to HR or to their boss, saying, "My little girl's nanny just sprained her ankle. She has to be off her feet for three days! And I have an executive board meeting tomorrow Help!" Or, "My husband is leaving tomorrow morning on the 7:30 a.m. shuttle for a two-day conference in Dallas. I have a 9:30 a.m. presentation to my biggest client. I have no one to stay with my 10-month-old son and 3-year-old daughter. What am I going to do?"

These scenarios are all too familiar to HR professionals, who know the devastating impact to their business's bottom line when employees can't show up for work because their primary child-care arrangements have fallen through. Similar versions of child-care breakdowns happen six to eight times each year to many working families. These breakdowns cost U.S. companies more than $3 billion each year in lost productivity. No wonder backup childcare is the fastest-growing trend in dependent services.

What to do? Rather than just taking two aspirins and hoping the situation will resolve itself in the morning, some employers are remedying the situation with emergency backup child-care programs. …

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