Adaptiva HR
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Adaptiva HR

The Importance of EAPs

When an organization values the mental-health of its employees, everyone benefits! The CDC agrees: “ By addressing mental health issues in the workplace, employers can reduce health care costs for their businesses and employees.”

Yet, there seems to be a disconnect here because:

of people believe companies should be doing more to support the mental health of their workforce.

Source: As Uncertainty Remains, Anxiety and Stress Reach a Tipping Point at Work (Oracle, 2020)

This is a sobering statistic, and is not surprising considering how long the pandemic has waged on. Many psychologists have stated that humans are not meant to live in this fight-or-flight response for as long as we have been. The flight-or-fight response is a physiological and psychological response to stress that prepares the body to react to the danger. While this helped our ancestors hunt and gather, living in this perpetual state depletes us. As the pandemic continues, many individuals are exhausted, burned-out, and sacrificing sleep.

Additionally, a great number of workers are quitting their jobs in this “great resignation.”

As NPR recently reported: “Many are rethinking what work means to them, how they are valued, and how they spend their time. It’s leading to a dramatic increase in resignations — a record 4 million people quit their jobs in April alone, according to the Labor Department.”

Clearly something in the system isn’t working on an individual and collective level. At Adaptiva HR, we hope that there will be positive changes for workplaces and individuals.

One way that can help both employers and employees is by highlighting the importance of mental health. When an employee feels supported, the entire organization will benefit. The more mental health help is available the less stigma there is to it. And when more mental health help is used we are healthier, as individuals and communities.

How do EAPs help?

EAPs (Employee Assistant Programs) are a very cost-effective way to support employees. Below are a few instances of examples of when an EAP can positively impact employees and employers:

  • An employee is a manager at an advertising agency. She is a mother to two young children and is feeling overwhelmed managing her team, keeping up with her regular workload and meeting deadlines while staying present for her family. As she meets with her EAP counselor, she is able to find ways to set more manageable goals for herself and her team.
  • An employee’s brother lives with him and is having a hard time finding affordable housing and resources to help with his physical disability. The employee’s brother is able to use the EAP service provided at his brother’s workplace. A EAP counselor helped the employee’s brother find the necessary community resources.
  • An employee has used EAP services in the past when she returned to the workplace after the birth of her first child. After a few sessions, she felt more balanced. However, the COVID pandemic brought on additional stressors for the employee and her family. The employee asked for the same EAP counselor she worked with before and was able to continue receiving support.
  • A few colleagues at a mid-size manufacturing company are experiencing conflict. The managers reached out to their EAP provider for management coaching and support around conflict resolution. The managers wanted to offer their staff more well-being support, but didn’t know what it looked like or how to deliver it. The EAP provider was able to deliver personalized and ongoing support as well as full-team trainings on conflict resolution.
  • An employee at a small nonprofit organization was experiencing an urgent crisis and needed a referral for additional mental health services and didn’t know where to turn. Her EAP provider was able to offer the employee a tailored referral.

These are just a few examples of when an EAP can help. In honor of National Depression and Mental Health Screening month, we hope to highlight the need for accessible and affordable mental health. While we can’t fix the entire broken system, employers can prioritize the mental health of their employees and in doing so will have positive ripples beyond their workplace.

Finding The Right Match

Not all EAPs are created equal. EAPs range from corporate-sized to a very local boutique provider. Some providers offer EAP as an add-on to other benefits, like short-term disability or a stand-alone benefit. When considering choosing an EAP, it’s important to work with the provider that meets your needs.

We recommend working with a local EAP provider that doesn’t outsource EAP. Look for an EAP that hires professional, licensed staff members with an advanced degree in clinical or behavioral mental health. Other benefits to look for include looking for an EAP offer that includes other workplace development, such as workshops or trainings and HR knowledge to make the integration of an EAP seamless. All EAP providers should be committed to providing 100% confidential and easy-to-use services that are free to employees and their families.

The Adaptiva HR Difference

Adaptiva HR has a unique twist on the traditional EAP service. Our own staff provides counseling support. This means that when an employee contacts us, they do not have to navigate a third-party or a lengthy intake process before scheduling an appointment with a counselor. There are no strict limits to the number of appointments. Our local counselors are well trained to support employees with a range of needs.

We also provide mediation and coaching for workplace conflicts when tensions are getting in the way of productive relationships.

“I have begun to make significant changes in my life and I am starting to recognize the ongoing importance of self care. My counselor has helped me to navigate through what has felt at times to be a quite brutal and confusing maze. Through our sessions, I have been provided with the tools that I need in order to deal with intense and quite intimidating emotions while gaining strength along the way.” — Adaptiva HR EAP testimonial

Let Us Support the Mental Health of Your Employees

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