The Workplace Nursery Scheme
Workplace Nursery Schemes
Why we all need to use them
So there's been much talk of late regarding our current economic plight. The cost of living spirals ever upwards, with inflation impacting everything from the food we eat to how we heat our homes and if that wasn't bad enough, the interest rate hikes required to tame it will make many of our mortgages difficult to service.
And on top of that there's the childcare fees. Whilst we appreciate how expensive it is to run day nurseries - London rents are no joke and we have amongst the highest wage bills proportionately to income out there - the fact that London families can spend upwards of 65% of their take home pay on servicing the childcare that allows them to work (see Guardian and Coram's Cost of Childcare report this year) makes the current arrangement unsustainable.
It's not easy to live in London. But it can be easier.
Workplace Nursery Schemes
I really am trying to trumpet this initiative as it essentially provides the most substantial saving out of all of the available (and rather complex / opaque and confusing) childcare subsidies / funding mechanisms available to parents across the UK. The Workplace Nursery Scheme essentially acts as a salary sacrifice - the employer pays the childcare fees on behalf of the employee, thereby reducing the taxable income of the employee. What this means is that both the employee and the employer stand to benefit. Substantially. You can find the full details on RSM's rather technical overview here
£10k in tax savings anyone?
We've calculated that some of our families are saving over £10k in tax rebates from the provision alone. Yes it can seem that you're just paying the full wedge but when you take the tax into consideration, the pay back is clear and very, very generous. If we compare that with, say, Tax Free Childcare, your maximum tax incentive is £2k in the year. Or childcare vouchers that capped out your monthly saving at £125 a month, we can see which provides the most material benefit to our families.
Help with Managing your Money
And that money can be really, really useful as we move into the winter. The extra cash for mortgage increases, utilities or food is really crucial for many of us as we plan for the coming quarter. So during a Cost of Living Crisis, there really couldn't be a better programme to alleviate the cost of childcare.
How does it work
For the Workplace Nursery to take effect, it is the employer, not the employee, who needs to set up the programme as it is essentially a mechanism that your payroll departments will have to process. That can mean, sometimes, a rather unduly level of lethargy from corporate HR teams / Pensions & Benefits Directors who, let's face it, tend to be rather old, white men who sometimes don't really understand that childcare is an issue we all deeply care about and need solutions for. "Nanny" isn't the cheap option she used to be.
Thankfully, we've partnered with Enjoy Benefits who manage the process as a staff benefit on behalf of corporate payroll departments. There is a super quick and easy onboarding process that companies go through to enact the programme and then they act as the intermediary delivering the staff benefit on behalf of the company. They do charge a % so we also can provide the arrangements directly but it would then be on the payroll departments to take up the admin, which they tend to not want to do.
What's in it for them?
Our nurseries are located across central London - Westminster, City of London and Canada Water so that we can be as conveniently located to the working destinations of office workers as possible. And with desk occupancy at only 1.5 days / week, those offices are EMPTY much of the time. Providing staff teams with a nursery school located nearby, that guarantees them a space and does so on a heavily subsidised / tax efficient basis that increases their take home pay is a clear benefit to the employing organisation
And for you?
Well outside of the money you save, having a nursery near work so you can remain focussed on your career and your workload for the full day, rather than having to dash back to pick up your child from a nursery closer to home before your colleagues leave work is an obvious benefit to working mums who want to remain progressing with their careers. The downside? You might have to bring your child to work. But imagine what story that tells them about work, the way the world works and why it's important. The upside - financial or otherwise - is clear.
Get in touch today if you'd like to find out more or check out our Workplace Nursery pages for more information