Whether you’re hiring employees for the first time or are growing an existing team, offering the right perks, benefits, and salary is essential for ensuring you hire the right people and that the people you hire work with your company for as long as possible. It’s expensive to bring on new hires and to replace people who leave, so it’s in the best interest of your company’s bottom line to make the right hire, once.
The incentives you offer employees can make it easier to attract top talent to your business. Offering certain incentives, such as an employee assistance program, also allows you to support your team members when they are facing challenging situations. With an EAP in place, you enjoy increased productivity while ensuring that your team members’ needs are addressed.
What is an Employee Assistance Program?
An Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a confidential program that gives employees access to counseling and other services when needed. EAPs can help employees cope with or address personal problems, such as family issues, substance use issues, or mental health concerns. The program can also help employees cope with work-related problems, such as workplace violence or harassment.
EAPs don’t only help people when they are experiencing challenges in life or on the job. They can also offer resources to help people improve their lives, such as financial planning support or assistance with adopting a child.
The services offered by an EAP are confidential, meaning that employees can feel confident that their co-workers or supervisors won’t find out if they needed to use the program.
What Can an Employee Assistance Program Offer?
The support offered by an EAP can take multiple forms. Employees can use the program to book face-to-face appointments with counselors or they can access counselors through video or phone calls. While many programs focus on addressing emotional and mental health concerns, some programs also offer legal and financial advice or assistance. Usually, the services available from an EAP are available to an employee, their spouse, and their children.
Generally, two models of EAP exist, a fixed-fee model and a fee-for-service model. With a fee-for-service model, your company only pays when employees use the EAP. With a fixed-fee model, you pay whether employees take advantage of the service or not.
What Are the Benefits of an Employee Assistance Program?
EAPs benefit employees and employers. They help employees get the assistance they need when they are facing major life concerns or challenges. Getting support for problems such as marital concerns or substance use disorder allows employees to move forward with their lives. Getting help also allows employees to focus on their work better, increasing their productivity.
The benefits for employers are numerous. For one thing, offering an EAP can be what makes your company look more attractive to potential new hires. People want to feel that they are supported by their workplaces. An EAP is evidence of that support.
When people have the support they need to address personal concerns, their performance on the job is likely to improve. They end up being more productive when on the clock and might be more engaged with their work. A study from Federal Occupational Health found that an EAP helped to increase employee productivity by 73%. EAPs can also help to reduce rates of absenteeism and can reduce instances of presenteeism when people show up to work but don’t really do much.
EAPs do cost money but generally have a decent return on investment. For every dollar your company spends on an EAP, it can save $5 to $16. Your company can use the money it saves through an EAP and through an increased employee retention rate to invest in growth, such as expanding into a new market or opening a brick-and-mortar location.
Although your business’ bottom line is important, it’s not the only thing that matters. Supporting your employees when they need it most is also essential. With an EAP, you can provide your team members with a work-life balance and help them get the assistance they need to live their best lives. The program can also end up helping your company grow and thrive, which is a win-win.
An EAP is just one way to help your business grow. The virtual CFOs at New Direction Capital can also help you discover ways to scale your company. Contact us today for more details.