Benefits and Compensation, Talent

More Employee Assistance Program Best Practices

Before the holiday, we began to explore some best practices concerning employee assistance programs (EAP’s). Today we have more best practices.

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Select the Appropriate Third-Party Vendor(s)

Many organizations decide to hire a third-party vendor to handle their EAP’s legal and compliance concerns and to help them develop an effective and reliable EAP. Here’s what you’ll want to look for when considering third-party vendors.

  • How many years they’ve been in business and how satisfied their current clients are. Do they have good referrals and references?
  • Where their headquarters and base of operations are located.
  • Their scope of services, general hours of operation, and whether they will be able to help your employees in various locations.
  • If their staff has the appropriate credentials and training.

Understand the Different Types of EAP Delivery Models

As you’re developing and implementing your EAP, it’s critical that you select a delivery model that will match what’s most relevant and applicable to your employees’ needs and expressed concerns, as well as your organization’s needs and concerns. Here are some different EAP delivery models that you’ll want to consider and learn more about.

  • Management-sponsored EAPs
  • Fixed-fee contracts
  • Fee-for-service contracts
  • Consortia
  • Member-assistance programs
  • Peer-assistance programs
  • Mixed-model programs

Use Common Sense When Deciding What to Include in Your EAP

If you truly want your EAP to be effective, it must provide services and programs that are relevant to your real-life employees. If the programs and services you’re offering aren’t relevant to your employees, they won’t take advantage of your EAP.

You can consult employee personnel and insurance data to discover what services your employees are using the most already. Or, just send out anonymous surveys on a regular basis asking your employees what they would like to access in their EAPs. And ask them for feedback regarding what they like about your current EAP and what they don’t like about it.

Endorse and Promote Your EAPs

Did you know that 40% of workers don’t take advantage of their workplace’s EAP simply because they aren’t aware that it exists or aren’t entirely sure of what types of services and programs it offers?

Bottom line: If you’re going to spend time and money developing and implementing your EAP, make sure that you are promoting and endorsing its programs and services everywhere across your organization so that your employees know all about it. That’s the only way to ensure your employees take full advantage of your EAP, that it yields a consistently high return on investment, and that your organization begins experiencing the many benefits of an EAP (listed in yesterday’s post).

As you’re implementing your EAP, keep the tips above and the information in yesterday’s post top-of-mind to ensure that it remains effective.