Ways HR Can Support Elder-Care Services
October 1, 1999
Providing employees assistance with elder-care services helps them get backon track -- which in turn helps your company. Here are ten ways your company cansupport elder care.
- Provide work/life benefits that help employees balance their work and personal lives. Companies may provide counseling, education and referral services on dependent care issues, such as elder care. As a free benefit, employees have 24-hour access to trained counselors who can locate adult-care resources (such as adult day-care programs, home health-care agencies, nursing homes, support groups, and more) in their area -- or nationwide.
- Host lunch-time seminars to educate employees on elder-care/care-giving issues such as Medicare/Medicaid, Social Security, home-care services, etc. Invite guest speakers or arrange for your work/life provider to host a seminar explaining the company’s elder-care services.
- Discuss flexible work arrangements, such as flex-time, compressed schedules, job sharing or part-time schedules, which may allow an employee to better care for an elder without conflicting with work responsibilities.
- Form onsite support groups for employees who care for elders, headed by a professional mediator, if possible.
- Arrange employee discounts for elder-care providers in your area (e.g., adult day-care programs, home health-care agencies, etc.).
- Start a lending library of care-giving and elder-care books.
- Provide Internet access so employees can link to numerous care-giving and adult-care Web sites.
- Offer flexible benefit/spending plans that allow employees to set aside money from their salaries on a pre-tax basis to be used for dependent-care expenses.
- Implement backup care programs, employer-sponsored subsidies that reimburse employees for part of the cost of backup care -- temporary care provided when regular care arrangements are disrupted. Note: Not only does this benefit employees, but it also decreases absenteeism and saves your company valuable time and money.
- Train managers on elder-care issues and benefits offered by your company so they can effectively support employees.
Source: Dependent Care Connection
Workforce, October 1999, Vol. 78, No. 10, p. 64-- Subscribenow!