National Study of Employers
The National Study of Employers (NSE) is the most comprehensive and far-reaching study of the practices, policies, programs and benefits provided by U.S employers to address the changing needs of today’s workforce and workplace. Conducted in 1998, 2005, 2008, 2012, 2014 and, most recently, in 2016, the NSE provides trend data on changes that have occurred over the past 18 years.
2014 National Study of Employers
- 2016 National Study of Employers
The 2016 NSE provides insight into how employers are responding to the changing demographics of the workforce over time and examines flexible work arrangements, paid and unpaid parental and other caregiver leave and elder-care assistance, among other practices. This is the sixth published study since the project was launched in 1998.
The 2014 NSE looks at changes in the workplace since 2008, found that flexibility over when and where full-time employees work is on the rise. This includes options such as working remotely occasionally (telecommuting), which saw an increase to 67 percent from 50 percent in 2008, and control over overtime, up to 45 percent from 27 percent.
On the other hand, provisions allowing extended time away from work largely saw declines, including practices such as job-sharing, down to 18 percent from 29 percent, and career breaks for personal and family responsibilities, down to 52 percent from 64 percent.
The NSE findings also revealed that business practice and governmental policy mutually influence one another. Over the years, employers have gravitated toward the 12-week minimum of family leave mandated by the Family and Medical Leave Act, provided space and time for breastfeeding mother as mandated in the Affordable Care Act, and increasingly offered health insurance benefits for unmarried couples, presaging changes in laws such as the Defense of Marriage Act.
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2012 National Study of Employers
2008 National Study of Employers
The 2008 NSE introduces factors which can predict flexibility and range of benefits. Size of company, number of union members, number of hourly employees and demographics of employees are examples of factors used as predictors. Employers that are nonprofits tend to offer the widest range of benefits for managing work and personal lives. Employers with more diversity in top positions and large employers also offer more support. Large companies are more likely to provide benefits which have direct costs, like child and elder care assistance.
2005 National Study of Employers
The 2005 NSE studies the prevalence of offered benefits, differences between small and large employers, and significant trends from the 1998 study to 2005. One finding was that small businesses offer more flexibility. For example, significantly more employees of small businesses than of large business change their starting and quitting times on a daily basis.
1998 Business Work-Life Study (Executive Summary Download)
Developed to complement The 1997 National Study of the Changing Workforce, The 1998 Business Work-Life Study is one of the first and most comprehensive studies of how U.S. companies respond to the work-life needs of their employees. It examines the prevalence of a broad array of programs and policies among a representative sample of employers and examines the characteristics of companies that are most likely to be family-friendly.