The Achiever Newsletter
How Can an Employee Assistance Program Help Your Employees?
By Laura A. Huggler
A growing number of companies of all sizes are offering their employees a unique service as a part of their employee benefit package. An employee assistance program (EAP) provides employees with counseling services which can help them in dealing with concerns such as personal problems, job performance issues, substance abuse, marital, and child rearing problems.
EAP services are confidential and the cost is covered by the company, usually with a predetermined usage limit. About 80 percent of all Fortune 500 companies offer EAP services to their employees. But what's in it for the employer? The companies report increased productivity and improved morale as well as reduced absenteeism, fewer accidents and worker compensation claims.
What kind of EAP might be suitable for your company? EAPs are staffed with mental health professionals such as licensed psychologists, professional counselors, and social workers. These professionals may be a part of the company's staff that provides in-house counseling services. More often the company contracts for EAP services through an agency that provides counseling services for a group of client companies.
Most EAPs are designed to provide assessment and treatment for many of life's pressing problems that impact employees' ability to function effectively at the worksite or in their personal lives. With a good partnership between the company and an EAP, everybody wins.
For referrals to Employee Assistance Programs in your geographical area, contact the Employee Assistance Professionals Association, Inc. at (703) 522-6272.
Laura Huggler is a human resources consultant associated with AchieveMax®, Inc. who specializes in human resources and workplace issues. She can be contacted at (517) 485-9095.
Publication Date: Winter 1994
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