Returning to Work After Parenthood

How to Handle Childcare When Returning to Work

Joe Bensam

Navigating Childcare Solutions: Essential Tips for Returning to Work

Navigating Childcare Solutions
Navigating Childcare Solutions

Returning to work after having a child can present unique challenges, especially when it comes to childcare. With the US Department of Health and Human Services indicating that childcare should not exceed 7% of a family's income, many working parents are left struggling.

This blog is dedicated to easing your worries by providing ideas for handling childcare effectively as you transition back into the workforce. Ready or not, let’s navigate through this together!

The Challenge of Returning to Work: Childcare Concerns

Coming back to work is hard for parents. They worry about who will take care of their kids. Childcare costs a lot in the United States, especially for small children. This makes it tough for many families.

Not all childcare places are good quality, and this is another worry.

Many places that care for children had to shut down because they did not have enough staff or money. The COVID-19 pandemic made it even tougher. Parents had more problems finding someone to look after their kids, but few could get help from their job with this.

How Companies Can Support Employee Childcare Needs

Companies can support employee childcare needs by offering flexible work hours, subsidized childcare for remote employees, and on-campus childcare services.

Flexible work hours

Flexible work hours help parents take care of their kids. Staff can choose when they start and finish their jobs. This kind of plan lets moms and dads drop off and pick up kids from daycare or school.

It makes it easy for families to set a routine that works best for them.

Workers prefer flexible hours too. A study shows that about half of workers would pick a job with flexible hours over one without them. Plus, both men and women said childcare benefits are important in deciding where to work.

With flexible hours, companies can make sure their team members stay happy at work.

Subsidized childcare for remote employees

Companies are now helping with childcare costs for remote workers. They pay part of the fees to make it easier for these employees. This type of care is called subsidized childcare.

It helps staff work without worrying about their kids. Only 8 percent of parents can get emergency and backup help from their job now though. Some women looking for a job even said they would pick a company that gave them money for child expenses or had care at the site where they worked! With help from employers, more families could afford good quality care for their children.

On-campus childcare services

On-campus childcare services are a valuable option for working parents. By having childcare facilities at their workplace, parents can have peace of mind knowing that their children are nearby and well-cared for.

This arrangement allows employees to easily drop off and pick up their kids throughout the day, making it more convenient and saving them time. On-campus childcare also promotes work-life balance by eliminating the need for long commutes to separate daycare centers.

Additionally, studies have shown that companies with on-site childcare experience higher employee retention rates and increased productivity. It's an effective way for employers to support their employees' childcare needs while fostering a positive work environment.

Childcare Options for Working Parents

Working parents have several childcare options to consider, such as in-home childcare, daycare centers, family childcare homes, and hiring a nanny or babysitter. Read on to explore these options and find the best fit for your family's needs.

In-home childcare

In-home childcare is a popular option for working parents who prefer to have their children cared for in the comfort of their own home. With in-home childcare, a qualified caregiver comes to the family's residence to provide care and supervision for the child.

This can be a nanny or babysitter who has experience and training in childcare. In-home childcare offers several benefits, including personalized attention for the child, flexibility in scheduling, and convenience for the parents.

However, it is important for parents to thoroughly screen and interview potential caregivers to ensure that they are reliable and trustworthy.

Daycare centers

Daycare centers are a popular childcare option for working parents because they offer both affordability and quality care. They provide a safe and supervised environment for children to socialize and learn while their parents are at work.

However, the cost of daycare can vary across the country, with infant care being the most expensive. On average, parents can expect to spend around $9,400 per year on childcare for one child.

Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in the closure of many daycare centers, making it more challenging for parents to find reliable and accessible options. Nevertheless, daycare centers often have policies in place that allow registered family or friends to pick up the child if needed, providing added flexibility for working parents.

Family childcare homes

Family childcare homes are a great option for working parents because they can be more affordable than other types of childcare. These homes often have smaller group sizes, which means that children receive more individual attention and care.

In addition, family childcare providers may offer more flexible hours and schedules to accommodate the needs of working families. This type of childcare setting can provide a nurturing and close-knit community for children to grow and develop.

Furthermore, family childcare homes tend to have lower staff turnover rates, ensuring consistency in care for the children.

Nanny or babysitter

Choosing a nanny or babysitter can be a great option for working parents. A nanny provides personalized care in the child's own home, allowing for flexibility and convenience. With a nanny, parents have more control over the schedule and activities their child engages in throughout the day.

Additionally, having a consistent caregiver can help build trust and create strong bonds with the child. It is important to thoroughly vet potential nannies or babysitters by checking references, conducting background checks, and ensuring they have proper training in areas such as first aid.

Tips on Choosing the Right Childcare Option

Consider your needs, budget, and the quality and adaptability of care when selecting a childcare option.

Understanding your needs

To choose the right childcare option, it's important to understand your needs. Consider factors like your work schedule, budget, and the type of care you feel comfortable with. Think about whether you prefer a daycare center or in-home childcare, and if proximity is important to you.

Also consider the age of your child and any specific requirements they may have. By understanding what you need from childcare, you can make an informed decision that meets both your child's needs and your own.

Remember, affordability is a major concern for many working parents when selecting childcare options.

Considering your budget

When choosing the right childcare option, it's important to consider your budget. Childcare can be expensive, with the average annual cost for one child being about $9,400. The US Department of Health and Human Services suggests that affordable childcare should not exceed 7 percent of a family's household income.

Considering your budget for choosing a childcare
Considering your budget for choosing a childcare

Keep in mind that care for very young children tends to be the most costly. By considering your budget carefully, you can find a childcare option that meets your financial needs while still providing quality care for your child.

Researching the quality and adaptability of care

It's crucial for working parents to thoroughly research the quality and adaptability of childcare options before making a decision. Currently, only 13 percent of two-year-olds in the US attend high-quality childcare settings, which means many families may have limited choices.

Considering factors such as staff-to-child ratio, training and certifications of caregivers, safety measures, educational curriculum, and flexibility in accommodating different schedules is essential.

Additionally, with the ongoing challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, it's important to inquire about how potential childcare providers handle health protocols and adapt their services to changing circumstances.

The Benefits of a Supported Workforce for Companies

A supported workforce can lead to increased productivity, lower turnover rates, and an enhanced company reputation. Discover the advantages of prioritizing childcare needs in the workplace.

Read more for valuable insights on how companies can support working parents effectively.

Increased employee productivity

When companies support their employees' childcare needs, it can lead to increased employee productivity. By providing flexible work hours and options such as subsidized childcare or on-campus services, working parents can better balance their responsibilities at home and work.

When employees have access to reliable and convenient childcare, they are able to focus more on their tasks without worrying about the well-being of their children. This creates a positive work environment where employees feel supported and valued, leading to higher levels of engagement and productivity.

Additionally, when employees don't have to worry about finding suitable care for their children, they can fully dedicate themselves to their job responsibilities, resulting in improved performance and outcomes for the company as a whole.

Dad working from home
Dad working from home

Lower turnover rates

Lower turnover rates are a positive outcome of having a supported workforce in companies. When employees feel that their childcare needs are being addressed and supported by their employers, they are more likely to stay with the company for longer periods of time.

This is important because high turnover rates can be costly for businesses and disrupt productivity. Research shows that lower turnover rates can also lead to better career prospects and higher earnings for employees.

By providing childcare benefits and options, companies can create a supportive work environment that helps retain top talent and improves employee satisfaction.

Enhanced company reputation

A company's reputation can be greatly enhanced by supporting its workforce, especially when it comes to childcare. When employees feel that their employer understands and supports their needs as working parents, they are more likely to have a positive perception of the company.

This can lead to increased loyalty and satisfaction among employees, which in turn can improve the company's overall reputation in the industry. By prioritizing childcare support and creating a family-friendly work environment, companies can attract top talent, retain valuable employees, and be seen as leaders in promoting work-life balance and employee well-being.

Additionally, studies have shown that companies with strong family-friendly policies tend to have lower turnover rates and higher productivity levels, further adding to their positive reputation in the business world.


Returning to work can be challenging for parents, especially when it comes to finding reliable and affordable childcare. Companies can support their employees by offering flexible work hours, subsidized childcare options, or on-campus services.

It is important for working parents to consider their needs, budget, and the quality of care when choosing a childcare option. By addressing these concerns and providing support, companies can create a more supported workforce that leads to increased productivity and employee satisfaction.

Related Topics: You may also be interested in learning about tips for staying productive at work as a new parent, preparing to return to work after parental leave and balancing work and family tips for working parents.

Joe Bensam

Joe Bensam is a dynamic, young blogger and avid entrepreneur, fervently championing the cause of startups and global team collaborations. Riding the crest of the digital age, he harnesses his experiences in the entrepreneurial world to provide practical insights and inspiration.

Starting his entrepreneurial journey at a young age, Joe quickly grasped the potential of a connected global community in shaping the future of business. His writing encompasses his passion for innovative startups, the power of global teams, and the limitless opportunities in entrepreneurship.

Renowned for his energetic writing style and progressive ideas, Joe offers his readers a fresh, forward-thinking perspective on building successful businesses in today's interconnected world.

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