For Immediate Release
December 4, 2018

From dental coverage to parental leave: Benefit trends for part-time employees
78% of organizations employ part-time workers

Brookfield, Wisconsin—With flexible work arrangements on the rise for organizations throughout the United States, benefits for part-time employees are presenting new ground for consideration. According to the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, 94 percent of organizations offer some sort of flexible work arrangement.

Many U.S. organizations (78 percent) currently employ part-time workers, according to Flexible Work Arrangements: 2017 Survey Report from the International Foundation. Of those organizations that employ part-time workers, 90 percent define part-time as working fewer than 30 hours per week.

"As the workforce shifts toward more flexible work options and away from the traditional 40-hour week, it's becoming increasingly more important to establish benefit policies for part-time workers," said Julie Stich, CEBS, Associate Vice President of Content at the International Foundation.

Health Benefits

Due to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) employer mandate, in order to avoid a penalty, health care benefits must be offered to those who work at least 30 hours per week (for organizations that employ 50 or more full-time equivalent workers). In the Flexible Work Arrangements report:

  • 37% of employers reported their employees must work a minimum of 30 hours per week in order to receive health insurance
  • 25% of employers reported their employees must work a minimum of 20 hours per week in order to receive health insurance
  • 6% of employers did not specify a minimum number of work hours needed to be eligible to receive employer-sponsored health care benefits.

For part-time employees working fewer than 30 hours per week, the most popular health care-related benefits provided include:

  • Health care insurance—54%
  • Prescription drug coverage—53%
  • Dental and vision care—52%
  • Flexible spending accounts (FSAs)—47%
  • Health savings accounts (HSAs)—33%

Paid Leave Options

Of the 94 percent of employers offering some sort of flexible work arrangement, paid leave benefit offerings for part-time employees include:

  • Holidays—68%
  • Bereavement leave—63%
  • Sick pay—52%
  • Short-term disability—41%
  • Maternity leave—33%
  • Parental/family leave—32%
  • Personal  leave—29%

"U.S. organizations are not required to provide paid leave to part-time workers, but many do for several reasons: to retain high-performing workers, attract high-quality applicants, build worker loyalty and provide work-life balance," said Stich.

Retirement and Other Offerings

According to the survey report, the most common retirement option for part-time employees is a defined contribution plan—401(k) or 403(b)—offered by 76% of employers. More than one quarter (27%) offer a defined benefit pension plan to part-time workers.

Other benefit options for part-time employees include life insurance (49%), dependent care (41%), long-term disability (41%) and educational assistance like tuition reimbursement (39%).

For more information and to access the full Flexible Work Arrangements survey report, visit   


The International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans is the premier educational organization dedicated to providing the diverse employee benefits community with objective, solution-oriented education, research and information to ensure the health and financial security of plan beneficiaries worldwide. The Foundation has more than 31,500 multiemployer, corporate and public sector members representing over 25 million lives. For additional information, visit

Anne Patterson | (262) 373-7624