Skip to main content

As the situation in Ukraine evolves, businesses should be mindful of potential risks to their people, assets, operations, or supply chains in the region and globally. Marsh, as part of the Marsh McLennan family of companies, has created a page with information, tools, and resources related to the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Please visit the page for the latest information.

May 9, 2023

Spark new interest in your EAP

Andrea Neal

In the new modern workplace, well-being has expanded beyond the physical and mental aspects defined by traditional health care. Its broadened scope now encompasses holistic well-being, which is comprised of physical, emotional, financial, social, community, and purpose factors.

In fact, in a recent Gallup poll measuring the most sought-after traits in employers, employees of all generations ranked the organization’s care for its employees’ well-being as one of their top three criteria. Therefore, to recruit and retain top talent, employers would do well to revamp and prioritize their approach to well-being.

One of the ways in which employers can commit to their employees’ well-being is by encouraging them to seek support from an employee assistance program (EAP). Twenty-eight percent of workers say their employer currently offers an EAP to help with mental health support, and 67% of employers plan to offer enhanced EAPs in 2023.

In addition to supporting the mental health needs of a population, EAPs also provide advice for legal, caregiving, and financial needs. Many EAPs also assist employers with educational seminars, management coaching and support, mental health response training, crisis intervention, and more. Despite being an excellent resource for employers, employees, and their families, these programs remain largely underutilized.

According to Mental Health America (MHA), approximately 4% of U.S. employees access their EAP each year. MHA also cites poor awareness of the resource and how to access it, confidentiality concerns, and the stigma associated with seeking mental health care as barriers to employees using an EAP. However, the data illustrates a need for this resource among the employee populations we serve. Behavioral health conditions, like depression and anxiety, consistently surface as a high cost and high prevalence across our clients. 

So what can employers do to spark interest in their EAP? Here are four key steps you may want to consider implementing within your organization:

  1. Rebrand. 
    Rebranding the name of your EAP can help employees see it in a different light and tap into it more excitedly. Try something such as “Lifestyle Management Program.”
  2. Destigmatize. 
    Unfortunately, negative attitudes and beliefs toward people with a mental health condition are very common and this stigma can lead to discrimination. Many harmful effects can come from this, such as reluctance to seek treatment, bullying, physical violence, or harassment. Because of the negative stigma associated with mental health conditions, consistent communication with employees on mental health topics is important. Download our Mental Health Communications Toolkit  and take the StigmaFree Company Pledge from the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
  3. Strategize. 
    Utilize these mental health resources to create a mental health strategy that works for your organization to create a mental health strategy that works for your organization:
    1. Mental Health Playbook
    2. Dimensions of Well-being Playbooks
  4. Promote. 
    Keep your EAP in front of employees by including them in regular communications (newsletters, open enrollment materials, home mailers, seminars, training, etc.) providing contacts to direct EAP-related questions.

We understand that the workforce today expects more from their employee experience as it relates to holistic well-being—and we can help. Reach out to one of our consultants for a custom, comprehensive approach to well-being with actionable tactics you can implement within your organization.