Terra Goodnight · January 8, 2016
When employers think about offering a new benefit to their workers, their first thoughts typically focus on costs. And that goes double for public officials, who must be conscious of spending taxpayer funds responsibly. But research shows that offering new parents paid time off to spend with a new child doesn’t have to break the budget.
Our latest report, released today, outlines how City leaders should approach estimating the additional costs and benefits that come from offering paid parental leave.
We looked at research that has been done on paid leave for new parents – how many employees take advantage of it, for how long and how it impacts productivity and employee retention. Conversations with officials in a number of Ohio cities helped us better understand the realities of how work is covered when an employee is out of the workforce during periods of leave.
Our report presents these thoughts, organized around how to estimate both the costs and savings from paid parental leave, through the use of a fictional municipal workplace of 5,000 employees. In our example, we found that nearly half the cost of offering leave to new parents was offset by measurable savings it can create. And there are other intangible benefits including reduced demand on the social safety net and increased worker productivity and morale.
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