Employee Assistance Programs - What is an EAP and How Can It Be Used?
<p>It is no secret that the past year has been difficult for most of those out there within their finances, careers, and personal lives. Many people are struggling to adapt to new forms of work such as remote work from home, sharing office spaces with those they live with, along with balancing work and home schooling their children. These transitions for many companies and their employees have been less than easy. Offering employee’s an employee assistance program that they can utilize during these tumultuous times can provide workers the support they need to continue to perform their job duties efficiently as well as maintain balance with in their mental and physical health which is more important now than ever.</p>
<p>Many employees find reasons not to utilize their company’s EAP, but much of that reasoning is due to misinformation. These programs are completely confidential, and an employee’s personal struggles will not be shared with HR or any department within the company. There is also no need to ask permission from your supervisor to utilize the EAP either. Many are also turned off by the stigma attached, but no one needs to know an employee is utilizing the program unless said employee is the one to share. One of the main reasons that employees may not utilize their company’s EAP is a lack of understanding of what an EAP provides as well as having no idea that the company offers an EAP altogether.</p>
<p>Companies need to make it clear they they do in fact offer EAPs to their employees as well as state concisely what exactly they can receive from an EAP. Emphasizing that EAPs are to be used no matter what the struggle is also a critical element in spreading this system of support to employees. They are not solely reserved for substance abuse or severe mental illness. Everyone is welcome to the EAP benefits they are lucky enough to be provided, and if these benefits are not being utilized, employers should spread knowledge and awareness of the program and employees should understand that it is all confidential and they are worthy of the support they need.</p>