Employee Assistance Programs – A life saver
People seldom get through life without having to deal with some sort of serious personal problem. An Employee Assistance Program can give your employees a way to cope with personal issues that can have a negative impact on their job performance, such as work-related stress or problems outside of the workplace. With an EAP, employees have telephone access to trained counselors 24 hours a day as well as in-person access if necessary.
Your employees will likely appreciate the fact that they have a resource they can use to discuss sensitive issues in complete confidence. With an EAP, the employer is not notified when an employee uses the service, so he doesn’t have to worry about endangering his job status or a potential “black mark” that could hinder his career.
Employees typically have access to an EAP hotline 24 hours a day, so there is no need to wait to seek assistance. If an appointment with a medical professional or counselor is necessary, the employee can arrange to see one in just a few days. Because the employee can call anytime, she does not have to worry about calling from a work phone.
Related Reading: What Is an Employee Assistance Program?
Work stress can build up over a period of time and can possibly lead to conflict with other employees or even escalate into a violent situation. With the EAP, the employee can seek help during the early stages of a problem, which can prevent it from turning into turning into something more serious.
An EAP can also help employees deal with issues outside of the workplace that can impact job performance. Many people deal with issues, including substance abuse, depression, marital strife and grief over the loss of a loved one. An EAP provides an outlet to help them resolve these issues, or at least learn to cope with them so they won’t impact job performance.
As the employer, an EAP can also provide benefits to you. Because employees have access to a resource that can remedy a potentially debilitating problem, it can reduce absenteeism or even turnover. As a result, you'll have a happier, more productive workplace. You may also be able to minimize the cost of your health insurance plan, because employees can use the EAP to ward off stress-related illnesses, meaning fewer trips to the doctor.