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CCH Survey Finds Employers Increased the Variety of Work Life Balance Programs Offered But Still Not Sure Which Are Most Effective

SeesawThe 2006 CCH Unscheduled Absence Survey revealed that on average, organizations are offering employees 11 work life balance programs, up from nine in 2005 and eight in 2004. However, the results also indicate that there is a disconnect between what programs organizations think are most effective, and which ones employees are actually using most frequently. For law firms wishing to roll out work life balance programs, the survey highlights the need to perform research (such as attorney interviews) upfront so that the programs implemented meet actual needs. Firms that don't research their attorneys' needs may find themselves with programs that don't help employees achieve the work-life balance they want and therefore fail to show a return on investment.

The top five work life balance programs implemented by organizations participating in the survey were: Employee Assistance Plans (76 percent), Wellness Programs (67 percent), Leave for School Functions (65 percent), Flu Shot Programs (64 percent) and Alternative Work Arrangements (63 percent). Other interesting initiatives were Fitness Facilities (59 percent), On-site Health Services (48 percent), and Sabbaticals (47 percent).

The work-life programs rated by employees as most effective were Alternative Work Arrangements, Leave for School Functions, Compressed Work Week, Telecommuting, and Emergency Child Care.

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