Child Care

On-Site/Consortium Sponsored Child Care

On-site child care is located at an employers’ workplace. For consortium sponsored child care, employers join forces to finance child care run, often run by a contracted operator. Employers can subsidize the cost of care so employees can pay below-market rates, or employers can ask employees to pay full cost for care.

Benefits to Employers1

  • Increases retention, reducing turnover costs
  • Allows tax credit of up to 25 percent of facility expenditures, plus 10 percent of any resource and referral expenditures, up to $150,000 in a calendar year; business expense tax deductions for remaining child care facility expenses
  • Improves employee performance and reduces absenteeism compared to when using off-site child care

Benefits to Children2,3

  • Improves overall health
  • Access to quality child care improves high school graduation rates, overall educational attainment
  • Access to an on-site facility may increase breastfeeding duration, which offers a health benefits for children and mothers

Benefits to Parents/Families4

  • Improves family economic security
  • Saves employees time
  • Highly ranked as a benefit, even by employees who do not have children
  • Access to an on-site facility may increase breastfeeding duration, which offers health benefits for children and mothers

Research or Recommendations from National Organizations

Employers who need extra support getting started may want to enlist a child care resource and referral agency. To find an agency near you, search the North Carolina Child Care Resource and Referral Council’s online directory. Agencies can help by offering:

  • On-site classes for employees who are parents.
  • A review of employers’ organizational work- life culture and guidance on developing family-friendly policies and procedures.
  • Guidance on employer-sponsored subsidies to help employees afford the cost of child care.
  • Assistance setting up and implementing on-site child care.
  • Assistance developing an emergency plan for on-site child care in the case of inclement weather, natural disasters or other emergencies.
  • Help with child care referrals for parents.

Employers should consult with legal counsel to understand the regulations surrounding a child care facility on site.

For a consortium sponsored child care arrangement, employers should set clear policies and procedures that ensure equity among coworkers and a location that works for the group.5

Employers who want to establish an on-site child care facility should:6,7

  • Start by talking with employees. Employee input is vital to ensuring that child care options meet employee needs with regard to availability, affordability and accessibility.
  • Explore the tax benefits. Providing child care can be expensive, but many of
    the costs can be taken as a deductible business expense or as a tax credit.
  • Identify a high-quality child care vendor to provide the care.
  • Consider connecting with a provider currently operating an employer child care facility to gain understanding of operational costs.

Range of Practices in the United States

Only 10 percent of workers had access to any workplace child care benefit in 2017.8

Just three percent of more than 3,000 US employers surveyed by the Society of Human Resources Management offered access to a full-time child care facility (subsidized or un-subsidized) in 2018.9

Low-wage workers, who often have the greatest difficulty finding and paying for high quality child care, are less likely to receive child care benefits at work. Only two percent of workers whose wages were in the bottom 10 percent had access to any child care benefit in 2017.10

More than eight in 10 working parents say they wish their employer offered some sort of child care benefit, and more than seven in 10 parents say their work has been impacted by child care falling through.11

Case Study

Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams

Location: Taylorsville • Year Founded: 1989 • Number of Employees: Over 900

The Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams corporate headquarters and manufacturing plant in Taylorsville, a rural town in Alexander county just north of Charlotte, may be one of the few factories in the country with a sand play area, a stage with a reading nook, and a garden for planting vegetables.

This American furniture company’s factory is home to an on-site, education based, not-for-profit full-time child care facility open to Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams’ local employees and members of the community, with space for 77 children from infants to age 12. It’s also one of the few five-star child care facilities in Alexander County.

Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams Chairman and CEO Mitchell Gold

Chairman and CEO Mitchell Gold, who co-founded the company with President Bob Williams in 1989, said he and Williams decided early on that offering child care would be a core part of their benefit offerings for families. 

“Somebody once told me that how you take care of a parent when they’re having their child, especially their first child, really has an impact on that parent and really lets them think long term about who you are as a person, who you are as a company,” Gold said.

“We recognized early on that we had employees with children, and they were distracted. They weren’t giving us their full attention because they were worried about being finished in time to pick up their child, or having to go across town to get their child if something went wrong,” he said.

“If you want loyalty from people, you have to be loyal to them. If you want respect from employees, you have to respect them.”

By removing some of the company’s working parents’ stressors, Gold said Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams has a more engaged, loyal workforce. “Bob and I, early on, recognized that if you want loyalty from people, you have to be loyal to them. If you want respect from employees, you have to respect them. 

If you want them to care about you, we have to care about them. All of these things are two-way roads,” he said.

Gabrielle Sinclair, a first-time mom on the human resources team whose toddler currently attends the child care facility, said she is grateful for the chance to have her child closer to her while she works.

“There’s a lot of angst and anxiety that goes along with being a first-time mom as it is, so knowing that your child is being well cared for puts those things at ease,” Sinclair said.


Sample Benefits at Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams

  • Medical and dental coverage; Flexible Spending Account
  • Company matched 401K retirement plan
  • Staff discount on all products
  • On-site health center for employees and families
  • On-site café serving breakfast and lunch
  • On-site gym
Show 11 footnotes
  1. North Carolina Early Childhood Foundation. “The Research Basis for Family-Friendly Workplaces.” June 14, 2018. https://files.familyforwardnc.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/NCECF_FFNCpolicyfactsheet-061418.pdf
  2. North Carolina Early Childhood Foundation. “The Research Basis for Family-Friendly Workplaces.” June 14, 2018. https://files.familyforwardnc.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/NCECF_FFNCpolicyfactsheet-061418.pdf
  3. University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute. http://whatworksforhealth.wisc.edu/program.php?t1=20&t2=4&t3=59&id=609
  4. North Carolina Early Childhood Foundation. “The Research Basis for Family-Friendly Workplaces.” June 14, 2018. https://files.familyforwardnc.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/NCECF_FFNCpolicyfactsheet-061418.pdf
  5. Enz, Cathy A. and Janet H. Marler. “Child-Care Programs That Make Sense.” The Scholarly Commons. Cornell University School of Hotel Administration. 1993. https://scholarship.sha.cornell.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=https://www.google.com/&httpsredir=1&article=1466&context=articles
  6. Durekas, Fran. “Helping Get On-Site Child Care.” Working Mother. November 30, 2009. https://www.workingmother.com/helping-get-site-child-care
  7. Marz, Michael. “Can a Business Write Off Childcare For Employees?” Houston Chronicle. https://work.chron.com/can-business-write-off-childcareemployees-16377.html
  8. Acosta, R. Alexander and William J. Wiatrowski. “National Compensation Survey: Employee Benefits in the United States, March 2017.” U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics. March 2017. https://www.bls.gov/ncs/ebs/benefits/2017/ebbl0061.pdf
  9. Society for Human Resource Management. “2018 Employee Benefits: The Evolution of Benefits.” April 2018. https://www.shrm.org/hr-today/trends-and-forecasting/research-and-surveys/Documents/2018%20Employee%20Benefits%20Report.pdf
  10. Acosta, R. Alexander and William Wiatrowski. “National Compensation Survey: Employee Benefits in the United States, March 2017.” U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics. March 2017. https://www.bls.gov/ncs/ebs/benefits/2017/ebbl0061.pdf
  11. Care.com. “This is how much child care costs in 2018.” July 27, 2018. https://www.care.com/c/stories/2423/how-much-does-child-care-cost/