Did you know that 1 in 5 of your employees provide care for an older adult? If this statistic surprises you, there are good reasons - many people who provide care for an older adult do not acknowledge their role as caregiver, and even those who do recognize themselves as a caregiver for an older adult often have difficulty raising it with their employer.
This is where Employer Resource Groups (ERGs) or affinity groups can play a role. By taking steps to establish a dedicated ERG for those who provide support to an older adult, employers can ensure that their caregiver employees have the support they need to thrive professionally and personally.
Although not new, caregiver ERGs have gained in popularity recently, and The Wall Street Journal’s recent article Struggling Caregivers Find New Support from Employee Resource Groups highlights the unique needs of those who juggle work and caring for an older adult.
Caregiver ERGs benefit both employees and employers - they improve job satisfaction, productivity, and retention rates by:
Fostering a Supportive Workplace: ERGs can assist in creating a sense of inclusion, belonging, understanding, and empathy among employees by allowing employee caregivers to engage in open discussions, share insights, and seek advice.
Creating Access to Resources: ERGs serve as a hub for knowledge sharing and resource dissemination including expert guidance. From navigating healthcare to managing caregiver stress, ERGs can equip caregivers with the necessary tools and information to make informed decisions and cope with the demands of caregiving while maintaining productivity at work.
Promoting Awareness: ERGs raise awareness of the issue of family caregiving and act as a collective voice for caregivers of older adults, advocating for their unique needs. Participating in a caregiver ERG can lead to an employee recognizing their role as a caregiver for an older adult. What they had assumed to be a familial responsibility that they were shouldering alone now becomes a role that they share with others and for which there is support.
Encouraging Professional Development and Networking: ERG participants often organize educational opportunities and mentoring programs tailored to their unique needs. Through these initiatives, employee caregivers can enhance their skills and gain valuable insights.
Mellie can assist you in creating and strengthening your caregiver ERG to ensure that it meets both your needs as an employer and those of your employees.
Our expert care elder care professionals can facilitate or moderate your ERG. Having an expert on hand to ask questions saves your employees time and ensures that they get the resources they need when they need them.
We provide education sessions specifically designed for your caregiver employees on elder care topics of interest to them.
Mellie's app for Slack enables your employees to contact one of our elder care experts via Slack for consultation and support.
Contact Mellie to learn how we can support you and your employees.