Dec Blog Posts

Winter Break vs. Working Parents

12/06/2021
Blog Post
Author: Abby

I still remember the days of winter break. For me it meant no homework, lots of TV, and sleeping in. To me, it was the best of times. I realize now that to my parents; it was the worst of times. There were four active kids in the house, screeching at volumes only heard at rock concerts. This was about 20 years pre-COVID, before remote work entered the mainstream lexicon. Now, as caregivers continue to juggle an increasingly hybrid workforce with other responsibilities, the pressure is on workplaces to support employees, or risk losing them to the Great Resignation.

The struggles of working parents were highlighted early on in the pandemic, and while most schools are back to in-person learning, caregivers are still struggling to balance work with family. 50% of caregivers say they can’t give their all at work. A majority of those are women, who are twice as likely to take on the bulk of parenting duties. Some parents fear that almost two years into the pandemic, it might never get easier being a working parent, especially since only 6% of employers offer child care benefits.

Supporting Your Caregiver Employees

This holiday season, when most schools have the last two weeks of December off, employees working from home may feel additional stress, trying to juggle work, caregiving, and other holiday preparations. Check out our tips on how to support your working caregivers during this time.

For Real Flexibility

Maybe you already offer employees working from home some flexibility in their work hours, given rise to what is now being called “triple peak hours.” But how many of them really take advantage of it? Or even want more flexible hours. Reach out to employees you know may be struggling to balance caregiver duties with their responsibilities at work and ask them what would work best for them. After all, if Some employees may want to work 6-9, take two hours off, and then hop back on for 11-5, while others crave the structure of working 9-5. True flexibility is figuring out what works best for everyone's individual needs and working styles.

Is Anybody Out There?

Depending on your industry, the workplace, virtual or otherwise, can feel like a ghost town around the holidays. Many people save their PTO to use those days anyway, in order to squeeze in some last-minute shopping or just hang with family. The multiple absences often means that little business gets done anyway, besides, who wants to start a big project right before the holidays? Consider giving your employees off one of those days, or at least closing the office for a half-day. Those with kids at home will be able to spend time with them, and other employees will be grateful for some bonus free time.

Benefits for Everyone!

You might have some benefits for working parents already on the books, but what about employees who are taking care of elderly loved ones? Or taking care of both? Now is a good time to re-examine your benefits offerings to make sure there is something for every employee, no matter their needs. Bundle offers interactive, engaging 1:1 virtual sessions for all age groups; kids, teens, adults, and adults 65 and older. Employees can schedule sessions for their loved ones, so they can focus on work knowing their family members are engaged. Or employees can schedule sessions for themselves, allowing them to learn a new skill, work on their professional development, or just relax. Employees can also schedule fun sessions for the whole family!

During the Great Resignation, it’s not enough to say you support working caregivers. You need to prove it too. Contact Bundle today to see how you can start providing employees with the benefit that helps all people take a break.

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