Childcare study finds striking results
Bristol-Myers Squibb’s study of its childcare centers found they enhanced users’ commitment, and even had a halo effect.
The study, conducted with the help of Boston College Center for Work & Family, compared users and non-users of the centers and found users felt better able to balance work and life responsibilities. They also had a deeper commitment to the company, says Stacey Gibson, who directs Bristol-Myers Squibb’s work-life and diversity programs. The halo effect? Those who had children in the company’s centers seemed to feel more positive about their relationships with their supervisors, and about the company’s policies in general. The difference between users and non-users was “striking,” says BC researcher Leon Litchfield. “Parents who had children in the centers were much more positive than the other group of parents. Out of 178 parents, you would expect that some would have something to complain about, but the complaints just weren’t there.” He suggests surveying parents as they apply to put their child in the company’s center and doing follow-up surveys yearly. Says Gibson, “Companies invest millions of dollars every year on quality childcare, but too few collect the data to prove its value.” This study proved, among other things, that it’s possible to conduct such a serious assessment.
# 18804 SLOAN W-F RESEARCH NETWORK, Winter 04, Vol. 6, pg. 6
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