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Gen Z Wants Child Care Benefits from Employers

August 7, 2023

New analysis of KinderCare's 2023 Parent Confidence Report uncovers generational differences, with Gen Z ranking child care above health insurance as a benefit

LAKE OSWEGO, Ore.—(BUSINESS WIRE)—As Gen Z ages into parenthood, data from a recent survey reveals they see child care as the most important benefit from employers, above health insurance. Once a niche perk, child care benefits are now key in employer’s efforts to attract and retain employees, especially Gen Z talent (those born between 1997 and 2012), who seem far more willing than older generations to switch jobs, move away, take a pay cut or even pause their career if it means finding affordable, quality child care. 

Data from KinderCare Learning Company’s 2023 Parent Confidence Report: Gen Z, conducted by Harris Poll, shows:

  • 30% of Gen Z parents rated child care benefits above health insurance (29%) — when considering whether to stay or leave their current job; all other generations (Millennial, Gen X, Baby Boomer) rated child care benefits just behind health insurance as most important.
  • Nearly half (43%) of Gen Z parents would switch jobs for financial assistance to cover child care costs, far more than Millennials (33%), Gen X (26%) and Boomers (21%).
  • More than half (52%) of Gen Z parents say they would switch jobs for on-site child care.
  • Citing difficulties finding or affording child care, 36% of Gen Z parents surveyed said they have accepted a job that pays less but has more flexibility, far more than Millennial (26%), Gen X (26%), or Boomer (19%) parents.
  • Nearly a third (29%) of Gen Z parents said they have moved to a new location to find child care, far more than Millennial (19%), Gen X (17%) or Boomer parents (14%).
  • 19% of Gen Z said they are casually looking for new opportunities, a significantly higher percentage than Millennials (12%), Gen X (13%), or Baby Boomers (2%).

KinderCare partners with more than 600 employers around the country to offer employees a suite of employer-sponsored child care benefits, and has seen a shift away from on-site child care and toward flexible solutions better suited to meet the evolving needs of workers, whether they’re remote, hybrid or on-site employees. KinderCare works with clients like Walgreens, Tyson Foods and an array of employers from across the country to answer their working parents' call for quality child care in the communities where they work and live nationwide.
“The quickly evolving world of work is affecting Gen Z in ways we’ve never seen before,” said Paul Thompson, President of KinderCare Learning Companies. “The shift to remote and hybrid models of work has been nothing short of seismic, and it's affecting not only how, when, and where Gen Z is working but also in what they expect from employers for the work that they do.” 
Thompson added KinderCare is “hearing loud and clear” that this generation of parents expect employer-sponsored child care as part of their benefits package, and that employers should recognize this need can be met in many different forms, “whether that’s back-up care, subsidized care, or on-site centers, there is always a way for any employer to find a way to better recruit and retain working parents.” 
To help prepare to meet the needs of their workforce’s shifting priorities, KinderCare partners with organizations across the U.S. to assist in the development of custom employer-sponsored child care benefits packages, with options ranging from tuition benefits, on-site centers, back-up care, before and after school care, and more to meet the needs of diverse workforces.


About KinderCare Learning Companies®

A leading provider early childhood and school-age education and care, KinderCare builds confidence for life in children and families from all backgrounds. KinderCare supports hardworking families in 40 states and the District of Columbia with differentiated flexible child care solutions to meet today’s dynamic work environment:

  • In neighborhoods, with KinderCare® Learning Centers that offer early learning programs for children six weeks to 12 years old and with Crème de la Crème®, which offers a premium early education model using a variety of themed classrooms;
  • For work, wherever employees work, offering customized employer-supported child care benefits at more locations than any other provider, and
  • In local schools, with Champions® before and after-school programs.

KinderCare programs meet the highest standards, validated by independent, third-party evaluation including:

  • Gallup, measuring workforce engagement,
  • National Association for the Education of Young Children, ensuring individual early learning center quality,
  • Cognia, accreditation for before- and after-school programs
  • BRIGANCE® and TerraNova® assessments of children’s academic progress and achievement, and
  • WELL Health-Safety Rating™, validating health and safety practices in our facilities.

Headquartered in Lake Oswego, Oregon, KinderCare operates more than 2,000 early learning centers and sites. In 2023, KinderCare earned its seventh Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award – one of only four organizations worldwide to achieve this milestone for six consecutive years. To learn more, visit