“If I don’t get a pay advance today, my landlord is going to kick my family out of our house tomorrow.”
As a growing business, you eventually get to the point where your employees are having various types of personal issues going on that as an employer you simple can’t help them with. This can range from divorce to addiction issues to financial problems and so on. And these issues often start affecting their work: their mind isn’t on their tasks, they are late for work daily, they are easily irritated and lash out at other employees, etc.
After wondering and wondering how we could help our employees get household budgeting assistance, substance abuse help, etc. we decided to adopt an Employee Assistance Program.
An EAP provides various types of counseling assistance to employees from a third party provider. So the counseling to the employee is entirely confidential; all the employer knows is that the benefit was utilized by their employees X number of times during the year.
We had very positive reactions from employees when we adopted the EAP. In addition, it helped our managers because they were able to suggest (or even require) that the employee contact the EAP to get some help with personal issues when it became obvious that the personal issues were affecting their work and the work environment.
Our company enrolled for less than $2 per month per employee so the cost adder is not overwhelming.
There are many providers of EAP programs. One that we have used successfully is Reliant Behavioral Health. Generally any good corporate health insurance agent can provide you with an EAP quote.
Also, here is a good, simple summary of what an EAP is.