Published on June 23, 2023
The financial reality of childcare means that many working parents cannot afford to go back to work fulltime once they have children – with the UK Office for National Statistics finding that around 28.5% of mothers in the UK had to reduce their working hours for childcare reasons.
One solution that is picking up traction and becoming more popular is the rise in workplace nurseries, bridging the two biggest challenges associated with childcare during the workday by letting parents access childcare within the workplace itself. Not only does this enable parents to visit their children throughout the day and remain on hand if needed, but it also creates a culture for businesses where childcare can be subsidised as part of their employee benefits package.
Here at My Ohana, we work with businesses of all sizes and across all industries in a number of different capacities, supporting those that want to open and manage their own workplace nursery and offering hands-on services and staffing to those that want to enjoy access to our full roster of skills.
But before we get to that stage, what exactly are the benefits of opening a workplace nursery for parents – and is it a worthwhile venture to invest in? Keep reading for the top 10 benefits cited by working parents with access to workplace childcare and nurseries.
1. Access great childcare without waitlists
Any parent will know that in order to get your child into a great nursery, you probably have to join a waitlist. With a workplace nursery scheme, you get a guaranteed place for your child as part of your employment package, with teams like My Ohana, delivering an exceptional standard of care which combines education and play.
2. Meet and get to know other parents in the office
Returning to the office after having a child can be challenging and can change your perspective and outlook on work. However, having other likeminded parents to engage with can make the process easier, with workplace nurseries organically drawing parents with similar aged children together.
3. Be there if something happens
No more dreading “that” call or message from an external nursery to say your child has fallen ill: when children attend a workplace nursery, parents can be on-hand as soon as something happens.
4. Connect with your child throughout the day
This is a particularly important benefit for new parents, who can enjoy access to their child throughout the day whenever they have time to pop in and say hello. This needs to be managed well by the team who will finetune a routine to minimise disruption to the child.
5. Access to workplace nursery partnership scheme for smaller offices
It’s not unusual for a single workplace or office to have only one or two children within the team as a whole, particularly for smaller offices. While this hardly makes a dedicated workplace nursery worth it, parents within these teams will still benefit if their employer joins our workplace nursery partnership scheme – with My Ohana committing to finding and subsidising the cost for those children to be inducted into a local or nearby nursery instead.
6. Calmer morning routine
Another major benefit for parents is the simple and (hopefully) stress-free morning routine, made all the better without the need for extra journeys to drop their child off at nursery.
7. Save money!
You might be wondering why this is so far down our list – after all, the cost savings associated with workplace nurseries are huge!
The cost savings connected with workplace nurseries vary but are often managed through a salary sacrifice scheme whereby a small portion of the worker’s salary is immediately removed to pay for the nursery place for their child. The remaining fee is considered a benefit that is offered by their employer, who can offset the cost against their National Insurance contributions for that employee.
8. Better work-life balance for parents
Parents with access to workplace nurseries typically have a much better work-life balance, as they do not suffer from the torment of being away from their child in the same way as a parent that takes their child to an external nursery. Parents whose children attend a workplace nursery remain a major part of their day, with the connection between nursery and the employer making pick up and drop off times far more flexible.
9. Combined education and play
When your child attends a nursery managed by a team like the My Ohana Childcare Extraodinaires, they don’t just spend the day playing meaninglessly – rather, they access a blend of educational games and skills building activities which help to prepare them for school and grow up into healthy, can-do adults.
10. It shows that an employer cares
Did you know that workplace nurseries are up there among the top recruitment and retention schemes which keep employees loyal to a business? The fact is that employers that offer workplace nursery support and demonstrate a human level of understanding, which is attractive to employees and workers, especially those that are parents or are soon becoming parents.
Thus, a workplace nursery offers the very real benefit of letting parents know that their employer is supportive of equality and inclusion.
Here at My Ohana, we deliver reputable childcare services both on behalf of and within workplace nurseries across a multitude of businesses. To learn more about our services and to become a part of our childcare family, get in touch today.