Could a Employee Assistance Programs help your business?

How to set up an Employee Assistance Program


Most people have gone through a personal problem in their life, it’s part of what makes us human. Yet, for workplace productivity, these issues can have a negative effect.

A study by Safe Work Australia found that depression costs Australian employers close to $8 billion a year due to sickness absence and presenteeism, while $693 million of this is due to job strain or bullying.

Much like a communication skills training, Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) can encourage you to better communicate with and understand your employees.

How can I help my employees?

One excellent way is through a localised EAP. This scheme is a work-based mediation program that aims to improve the emotional and psychological wellbeing of employees, and sometimes includes services directed at their immediate family.

The program is designed to provide preventative and preemptive interventions for the early identification and resolution of both work and personal problems.

Issues can include:

  • workplace bullying;
  • office and personal relationships;
  • depression;
  • anxiety.

What do I need to set up an EAP?

Firstly, you will need to organise a team, utilising members from human resources and others, that is responsible for deciding what kind of EAP model is needed.

Secondly, the committee should draft an EAP policy action plan which will explain the program. It should include an explanation of aims, services provided, step by step procedure guidelines for employee access and confidentiality.

Thirdly, define who will fill the role that will deliver EAP services. For many businesses, this might mean finding an EAP provider that fits both the needs and culture of the company.

Finally, you will need to publicise the policy internally through newsletters, the organisation’s website and any other modes of communication currently employed. The aim is to get the policy in the hands of every single employee so that they can ask questions and get up-to-date.

EAPs offer a range of benefits to organisations that employ them. From cost-saving to improved productivity, EAPs are an excellent way to develop your employees and your personal communication skills, while better managing their performance.

To find out other ways of communicating with your employees, contact a quality communication skills training provider.

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