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How can an EAP support employee wellbeing?

The success of any organisation largely depends on its workforce and the wellbeing of that workforce. Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) are company-provided initiatives offering various forms of support to employees dealing with personal issues that might affect their work performance. EAPs not only assist employees in overcoming challenges that may impact their wellbeing and productivity but also benefit employers. EAPs offer:

  • Counselling: EAPs often provide access to professional counsellors, therapists, or psychologists who can assist employees in addressing a wide range of personal and emotional issues, including stress, anxiety, depression, relationship problems, substance abuse and grief.
  • Work-Life Balance: Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is crucial for sustaining employee wellbeing. EAPs are pivotal in guiding employees to set boundaries, manage their time efficiently, and carve out quality time for personal pursuits. By offering workshops and resources on work-life integration, EAPs assist employees in striking a harmonious equilibrium between their professional and personal lives.
  • Referrals: If an employee’s situation requires specialised or long-term help, EAPs can provide referrals to external professionals or organisations that can offer the necessary assistance.
  • Crisis Management: Employees can experience trauma and heightened stress in times of crisis. EAPs are equipped to provide immediate support and interventions during such situations. These programs offer crisis management resources, counselling, and debriefing sessions to help employees navigate the emotional aftermath of critical incidents.
  • Educational Resources: EAPs often offer educational materials and resources on topics related to mental health, wellness, financial management and legal issues.
  • Preventive Measures: EAPs can also provide workshops, seminars, and training sessions to promote wellness, stress management, and effective employee communication.
  • Strengthening Employee Engagement: Engaged employees are more likely to feel a sense of purpose and satisfaction in their roles. EAPs contribute to employee engagement by demonstrating that the organisation is invested in its employees’ wellbeing. When employees feel supported, they are more likely to be engaged, committed, and motivated to contribute positively to the workplace.

What are the benefits?

EAPs can greatly benefit both employees and employers. From the employer’s perspective there are some big advantages; firstly, one study noted that 70% of active EAP users reported improved productivity. Moreover, 80% of participants with depression reported an improvement. The International Journal of Health and Productivity found that absenteeism dropped 27% for workers who used an EAP. There are clear benefits to using an EAP. What about employees, what benefits do they get? For employees it is a no brainer, they get access to all the services and perks of an EAP at essentially no cost. Importantly though, employees gain access to confidential support, without the need to wait (sometimes up to 12 weeks with the NHS) which will help them through life’s struggles.

EAPs don’t just have the employees’ backs; they’re there for managers and leaders as well. When you’re at the helm, things can get pretty overwhelming. EAPs can provide resources for leadership training, conflict resolution, and even guidance on creating a more inclusive work environment. Happy managers often lead to happy teams – it’s a win-win!

Remember, a happier workforce is a more productive one. When employees feel valued and supported, they’re more likely to give it their all. So, whether you’re an employee or an employer, take a moment to appreciate the power of EAPs – because sometimes, a little help goes a long way.

If you would like help in finding an EAP that is right for you and then implementing it into your organisation, please get in touch with a member of the View HR team. We would be more than happy to help.