Thursday, April 3, 2008

EAPs AREN'T Wellness Programs: Don't Let'm Say So

A new study released by HR benefits research group Hewitt Associates reports that employers are failing to engage employees in Wellness Programs to any significant degree and that employees really don't want their employers involved in their personal lives telling them how to manage their health. You can read about the research study here at the Hewitt Associates Press Release. Ouch for Wellness. What are the implications for managing EAPs and behavioral risk, which of course have nothing to do with this report. Just that: Don't let management pull the EAP into the vortex of program cuts and lump you in with the "Wellness Program" folks down the hall. EAPs are management tools, pro-employee and pro-company management tools. They aren't part of a Wellness Program, but the folks not like to remember this are the top management decision makers who look for places to cut fat. It ain't you if your running a functional employee assistance program.

Wellness programs sound great, but when reduced to a survey of popularity, only 17% of employees say they want their employer to get involved in their personal lives.