Employee Benefits


HR Trends

Groundbreaking Harvard Business School research confirms the ROI of investing in caregiving benefits

Groundbreaking new research published by Harvard Business School’s Project on Managing the Future of Work is poised to have a major impact for employers — providing the most concrete data analysis yet that investing in caregiving benefits leads to a material return on investment for companies and organizations.

In Healthy Outcomes: How employers' support for employees with caregiving responsibilities can benefit the organization, Professor Joseph Fuller and a team of researchers independently analyzed data from nearly 100 Wellthy clients. Their findings are significant — both in describing the impact that caregiving benefits have on employees, but also in outlining how caregiving benefits are among the smartest business decisions an employer can make to reduce costs and create a thriving workplace culture.


“Employers who make the right investments in caregiving benefits for employees are more likely to see better outcomes such as higher retention and better engagement."


There’s a breadth of insights in Healthy Outcomes that speak to specific impacts of caregiving benefits. We wanted to call out five key findings that not only paint a picture of how caregiving is having an impact on today’s workforce, but also where researchers found material ROI for both employers and employees alike.

  1. Nearly 66% (2 out of 3) employees with caregiving responsibilities reported that access to care benefits like Wellthy help them stay better engaged on the job — missing fewer meetings, and avoiding days off in order to respond to family care responsibilities.

  2. Conservatively, companies that offer caregiving support are likely to see a reduction in turnover by at least 5-6%. That reduction has profound implications for employers, researchers discovered. Given the cost of replacing employees, employers will see a more than 2 to 1 ROI — calculated at 126% ROI — just on retention alone from care concierge benefits that support working caregivers.

  3. Reducing turnover rate by even just 1.7% is where caregiving benefits like Wellthy will start to pay for themselves. Given that conservatively employers will see a 5-6% reduction in turnover, Wellthy ends up saving employers millions of HR dollars.

  4. More than 30% of employees say that Wellthy has helped them avoid taking a leave of absence or leaving the workforce entirely. Currently caregiving is the number two reason (behind retirement) for why employees exit the workforce. But when these employees — many of whom are women — have the tools and resources to balance caregiving and their professional responsibilities, they’re more likely to stay employed. That means companies and organizations are more likely to retain younger (Gen Z and millennial) workforces, and improve workforce diversity — especially as it relates to gender. As the report finds, a company’s “failure to respond to its employees’ caregiving needs also undermines a company’s efforts to improve its performance on diversity, equity, and inclusion.”

  5. Every decade of an employee’s work career brings different care challenges, stressing the need for benefits like Wellthy that support employees with care support spanning all phases of life. Employees under 45 are more likely to have the highest burden of caregiving, caring for both younger children and aging parents (as part of the “sandwich generation”), while employees over 45 may be faced with higher intensity and cost related to taking care of an aging parent or partner.

At Wellthy, we’ve seen the tangible impact of caregiving benefits for nearly 10 years now, and after completing more than 120,000 caregiving tasks and projects for families — hearing each and every day from working caregivers about how Wellthy has taken so much of the logistical and administrative burden of caregiving off their plates. Our own data shows that 90% of employees who use Wellthy feel more engaged and less stressed at work, that 2 in 3 miss fewer meetings, and that 1 in 3 avoid a leave of absence or resignation.

That’s meant that these employees have been able to focus more on love and connection with their loved ones, rather than healthcare logistics.

Now we have concrete ROI numbers that put specific percentage points and dollar amounts showing that caregiving benefits aren’t just a ‘feel-good’ perk, but one of the smartest business decisions a company can make to help employees stay more engaged in their jobs, reduce costs, and create a thriving workplace culture. 

Read the full report, Healthy Outcomes: How employers' support for employees with caregiving responsibilities can benefit the organization, here: https://www.hbs.edu/managing-the-future-of-work/research/Pages/healthy-outcomes.aspx