Covid brought to the forefront issues that have long affected caregivers in the workplace—a lack of flexibility, inadequate parental leave policies, a high cost of child care, and work cultures hostile to the responsibilities of caregiving.

As students return to classrooms and employees return to the workplace, now is the time to make fundamental shifts in the way we work. This playbook is for leaders and organizations who want to be at the forefront of those changes and who understand that the vast majority of workplaces have never accommodated the realities of working parents—especially working mothers. In it, you’ll find advice from experts and organizational leaders, and actionable strategies to address flexibility, benefits, and culture.

You can view and download a free PDF copy of the playbook:

Key takeaways:

  • Working parents need flexibility. The pressures of the pandemic have only increased the need for policies such as remote and hybrid work, flexible schedules, part-time positions, and job shares and returnships. For these policies to be successful, it’s essential to build formalized, robust structures to give employees clarity and ensure equitable implementation.
  • For most caregivers, existing employer benefits don’t do enough. To support parents and other caregivers, companies must provide adequate paid family leave, child-care benefits, and mental health and coaching support. At organizations that already provide these benefits, managers must provide the education and support that employees need to take full advantage of them.
  • To create an environment where all caregivers can thrive, employers must create work cultures that value caregiving at every step of the employee life cycle. This means rethinking practices such as role design, manager training, and performance evaluation to support and celebrate caregiving. It also means rejecting outmoded styles of leadership that focus on in-office face time and long hours in favor of management practices that leave workers with time for themselves, their families, and their communities.

With each of these strategies, we’re encouraging organizations to imagine a different kind of workplace—one that celebrates caregiving and allows individual caregivers to thrive, both at work and at home. Whether you’re an organizational leader, a team manager, or an individual advocating for change in your workplace, the contents of this playbook provide a blueprint for a better future for working parents. It’s now up to organizations to start building that future.