Many employers struggle to get employees enrolled in EAPs, even though they are free to employees and offer significant benefits. Here are 6 ideas to help drum up some well-deserved interest:
1. Consider a marketing campaign
As you know from other aspects of your business, most things don’t follow the “if you build it, they will come” model. Your EAP is no exception. Carve out some time to create a simple marketing plan for your EAP. It will be time well-spent.
2. Watch out for “perk” talk
EAPs offer real, valuable benefits to employees. Don’t inadvertently sell your EAP short by describing it as an easily dismissed perk.
3. Emphasize confidentiality
Although there have been real strides with mental health initiatives in recent years, many employees still fear repercussions if they indicate they need a helping hand dealing with stress, depression or other perceived “weaknesses” – especially in a workplace setting. Employers and HR know that all EAP services are anonymous at the individual level, but employees need frequent reminders (and reassurances) about this.
4. Highlight the cost (to employees, $0)
Companies pay for EAP programs, of course, but employees pay nothing to utilize the benefits. Again, this point should be hammered home to employees. What is obvious to HR is sometimes unclear to employees. And in the case of your EAP, confusion leads to underutilization.
5. Get the word out
It’s possible that many of your employees aren’t aware of your EAP at all. Be sure to publicize both the fact of the program and the myriad benefits it offers.
6. Make the most of wellness generally
Companies that consistently promote the importance of wellness (physical, emotional, financial and mental) are better positioned to promote the value of their EAP because it dovetails with the overall company culture.
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