Employee Wellness Matters: Why Employers Should Invest in an Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
Employment benefits and services are all of the indirect financial payments that an employee receives during employment. These include paid time off, supplementary life and health benefits, and an Employee Assistance Program (EAP). These benefits are very much considered to be a part of a worker’s wage, despite the fact that they do not take the form of concrete dollars in the bank account. In fact, they cost employers quite a bit of money on top of wages, which are typically the highest expense in an organization.
Why Health Benefits are Important
The advantages to employers of providing benefits for workers’ health and dental care are numerous. Healthy employees aren’t as likely to require time off, and they are more productive and happy at work. For employers, there is the added benefit of knowing that you’re doing more than paying workers; you’re taking care of their physical wellness. Doing the right thing and being socially responsible goes a long way in today’s market. Informed customers want to know that they are patronizing businesses that treat workers fairly and compensate them justly.
What About Mental Wellness?
If employers are doing their part looking after the physical well-being of workers, is it enough? Recent workplace trends toward having EAPs as part of the benefits package suggest that it is not. Employers are showing a more active interest in looking after the mental health of workers now too, by offering them access to an EAP. While offering an EAP does add to the cost of benefits, it’s worth it for employers.
The Top 5 Reason Employers Should Invest in EAPs
- Effective Cost Savings Through Reduced Disability Costs
Employees who have more resources for dealing with stressors are less likely to go on disability leave, which will reduce the costs associated with disability insurance and claims.
- Reduced Absenteeism = Greater Productivity
Healthier employees take fewer sick days, which means they’re doing what you need them to do (working hard!) on a consistent daily basis.
- Additional Resources for Dealing with Workplace Problems
Many workers who use the EAP do so to deal with workplace issues such as harassment, witnessing a trauma, or stress. Having the EAP as an additional resource is a great way for employers to support their staff.
- Social Responsibility: Employers Looking After Employees
If you look after your employees, they’ll look after you. As well, you will hold a more positive view in the public image and customer base. As well, an EAP may even attract quality workers to your organization.
- Happier Workplace
Employees that have access to mental health and wellness support and tools will be, in general, happier and more harmonious in the workplace.
In general, the trend toward offering an EAP is growing. Aside from the expense, there are really only positives involved with offering an EAP. However, in this case, the pros really do outweigh the expense. They even have the ability to save money in the long run! With that said, contact your benefits provider to find out more about adding an EAP to your benefits package today!
Written by Jennifer Miller | Curriculum Development Coordinator
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