Employer-Sponsored Daycare: Benefit or Necessity?

Employer-sponsored daycare is generally considered by employers to be a benefit for their employees. Often, in determining the feasibility of beginning a program, employers examine their projected return on investment. Factors to take into account are reduced absenteeism and tardiness, increased productivity, and increased recruitment and retention. These days, however, with the downturn in the economy, employers may have to change their view of child care.

Daily news is peppered with reports of child care programs closing. Most programs run on very tight margins, so when their programs are not full, they are simply unable to make ends meet. The closure of daycare centers and family daycare programs means less choices for parents who still must have care for their children while they work. While some parents have the advantage of having reliable family members nearby that can help with child care in the area, many do not. Some parents may have to rely upon unlicensed child care programs which are generally less expensive than licensed programs, but are also generally less stable. Worse yet are parents who feel that they have no choice but to leave their children home alone while they work. It won't take too many licensed programs closing for employers to be faced with having to provide child care programs for their employees to even be able to work at all.

See the story below for information on how the lack of availability and affordability of child care is already impacting parents and children. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/12/20/AR2008122002113.htmlr