Studies show that when employees have access to paid family and medical leave, employers experience reductions in turnover and increases in employee engagement and loyalty, which helps businesses save on direct and indirect costs. Employers spend less on separation and unemployment insurance, lower their temporary staffing costs, and see fewer costs associated with searching for, interviewing and training new employees.
Access to paid family and medical leave increases the probability that workers will continue in their job after a serious health issue or the birth of a child, rather than quitting permanently and save employers the expense or recruiting and training a replacement worker.
Paid family and medical leave insurance programs are an affordable way businesses can support workers when serious family or medical issues arise; and paid family and medical leave insurance programs, which pool very small employer and employee contributions and that are managed by the state, allow employers to provide a benefit to their employees that they might not otherwise be able to afford on their own.
Research in other states with Paid Family and Medical Leave Insurance programs show that these programs have been good for businesses, despite initial concerns to the contrary. In California, for example, a 2011 report revealed that six years after the introduction of a statewide paid family leave program, both workers and businesses reported positive effects: in a study of 253 businesses, most employers reported that PFL had either a “positive effect” or “no noticeable effect” on productivity (89 percent), profitability/performance (91 percent), turnover (96 percent), and employee morale (99 percent).
Paid family medical leave programs can increase employee retention significantly, especially among low wage workers. A recent study of low-income workers in New Jersey found that those who use the paid leave program reported returning to the same employer at almost twice the rate of workers who do not use the program.
It’s time for Oregon businesses to benefit from paid family and medical leave.