Get­ting started

Employee Benefit News - - COMMUNICATION & ENGAGEMENT -

For em­ploy­ers who don’t of­fer el­der­care ben­e­fits or who want to en­hance an ex­ist­ing pro­gram, what’s the best way to get started? Here are three tips.

Sur­vey em­ploy­ees.

Em­ploy­ers in­ter­viewed all agree that the most im­por­tant thing em­ploy­ers can do be­fore im­ple­ment­ing or mod­i­fy­ing an el­der­care pro­gram is to find out what their em­ploy­ees need and want. “Be­gin with a sur­vey of your em­ploy­ees and then con­sider star­ing small with a pi­lot project in one area,” Fan­nie Mae’s Stone says.

Get se­nior lead­er­ship sup­port.

Mak­ing sure the en­tire or­ga­ni­za­tion is on board with changes is vi­tal. Deloitte’s Fisher be­lieves that se­nior man­age­ment sup­port at the con­sult­ing firm made all the dif­fer­ence when they en­hanced el­der­care ben­e­fits. “Our U.S. CEO Cathy En­gel­bert was very pas­sion­ate about our new fam­ily leave pro­gram, and made it an or­ga­ni­za­tional pri­or­ity.”

In­cor­po­rate small changes.

In­tro­duc­ing sup­port for care­givers doesn’t have to be ex­pen­sive or dif­fi­cult, says Re­ACT’s Holzapfel. “The goal is not just to spend more money and have more ben­e­fits.There are low cost and no cost ways to sup­port em­ployee care­givers by in­cor­po­rat­ing com­mu­nity re­sources and us­ing EAPs more ef­fec­tively,” Holzapfel says. “But we need to cre­ate a cul­ture shift that will re­move stigma and nor­mal­ize care giv­ing through ef­fec­tive top down com­mu­ni­ca­tion.”

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