Many companies worry about the costs. If a company pays for a service that only a portion of its employees use, it might cause all sorts of issues, from worker resentment to wasted money. A 2004 study, however, found that not only did companies actually save money through employee attraction and retention by establishing on-site childcare, but most workers were willing to contribute to the program regardless of whether or not they had children. As researcher Deborah DeGraff told Bowdoin College, "They liked the idea that the company took care of the person who worked down the row from them."
What's more, on-site childcare doesn't have to actually cost companies anything—at least, not when all is said and done. According to an essay for Fast Company by Patagonia CEO Rose Marcario, when you combine federal tax benefits, employee retention, and improved productivity, companies can recoup or even profit from the costs of on-site childcare. Marcario estimates that Patagonia recovers 91% of its annual costs, whereas JPMorgan Chase Bank estimates 115% in savings and KPMG finds a return of 125%. Explore the issues of childcare and family leave in the workplace with the videos below.