Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The EAP Is Not a Place. It's a Program

The employee assistance program is not simply a “place” where counselors wait for employees to show up via self- or supervisor referral. More accurately, the EAP is a programmatic approach to the management of troubled employees and the risks that arise with human behavior and interaction in the work organization. Examples include conflict, morale issues, team building, and the need for consultative guidance offered to managers. The EAP is a tool for supervisors to use in resolving the problems with employees. Supervisors can succeed in managing a troubled employee without the employee ever going to the EAP, if in fact the employee corrects their behavior after constructive confrontation, where the EAP was used as a resource within context of the corrective interview. If the employee gets well. The "program" worked. It happens all the time. So how important are utilization rates, literally? Well, it's important to understand the level of EAP use in this more important context of using the programmatic approach to effect change actually helps salvage troubled employees. Perhaps after a supervisor referral, an employee will decline attendance, but if he or she takes the need to make personal changes seriously, which lead to better health and better productivity, it worked. It happens all the time, and where the EAP option doesn't not exist, loss of human capital more often results.