Childcare incentives: how to please the parents


A significant proportion of the workforce is made up of parents, but are work benefits appealing to this large demographic? Within the UK, 1.8 million two-parent families split employment so that the father is in full-time work and the mother is in part-time work. The employment rate for mothers has increased by 11.8 percentage points over the past two decades. So what incentives could a work place offer?

The incentives

Facilitating a parent’s little one can be an extremely attractive incentive for parents in the workplace.  Below are some of the current benefits that are provided:

  • On-site nursery
  • Paid leave
  • Child care subsidies
  • Flexible work schedules
  • A ‘family comes first’ policy
  • Dependent care assistance programmes
  • Backup childcare
  • Childcare centre discounts
  • Shared parental leave
  • Tax free childcare schemes


When your key workers become parents, there needs to be some flexibility on how to make it work. A parent can sometimes feel guilt for returning to work, and not spending all the hours in the day with their little one. Additionally, putting them into nursery will cost upwards of £60 a day.  In today’s increasingly competitive market, putting yourself out there as a progressive employer can only be seen as a positive. Supporting the needs of working parents will attract to the widest pool of talent possible. With the working age continuously extending, and some companies now having five generations in one workplace, it could be seen as key. Beyond this, it encourages the employee to produce their best work while they are working, knowing their child is being catered for and the company supports them as a parent.

What to do

Some incentives like childcare centre discounts will help to manage a parents’ budget more effectively, and leave more money to spend on their child. Traditional schemes have also given financial contributions or the opportunity to work flexibly, with working from home being a key incentive. For our top 10 tips on working from home, click here. Besides this, the government offer tax free childcare schemes. These schemes are gradually replacing the childcare voucher scheme in supporting childcare costs, which parents can apply for to see if they are eligible. It also doesn’t have to be just childcare subsidies; it could be discounts to local family-friendly attractions, high street stores, games/toy companies or children’s clothing to name a few.