What is the ROI of Employee Assistance Programs?

Girl stretching EAP

The foremost goal of offering health benefits to your employees is to maintain a healthy workforce, taking care of your people so they can continue to put in the hours to take care of your business. This benefit is usually provided in the form of an employer-sponsored health insurance program to cover medical, vision and dental expenses. But some employers are taking their team’s wellbeing a step further by providing an Employee Assistance Program, or EAP. Offering an EAP to your team comes with additional cost, but some studies have demonstrated that there is measurable ROI by increasing the level of care provided by employee health benefits.

What is an Employee Assistance Program?

An EAP is a work/life service offering counseling for a range of issues that can arise in your employees’ lives. Issues such as stress, depression, work/life balancing, family/financial concerns, alcohol and drug dependency are all too common in our modern world. There’s a strong chance your employees are dealing with any number of these issues in their lives on a daily basis, and this doesn’t change when they’re at work. With an EAP, your employees have access to a dedicated team of management consultants that have the expertise to help access, develop a plan and monitor high-profile situations that impact managers and HR. Services could include mental health and substance abuse counseling, financial and legal consultation, child and elder care resources and guidance, home improvement, and pet care and obedience training.

What is the Impact on my Business?

An EAP provides compassionate care that puts people first, contributing to higher levels of employee engagement and satisfaction. Helping employees be their best naturally leads to an increase in productivity and quality of work. Happier employees mean a happier bottom line.

Over time, studies have repeatedly shown that there is positive ROI when an employer implements an EAP. Recently, a study conducted by the Workplace Outcome Suite analyzed data collected from 2010 through 2019. It showed that EAP counseling was associated with statistically significant improvements on work presenteeism, work absenteeism, workplace distress, work engagement and life satisfaction. It also combined the results of absenteeism and presenteeism data into hours of lost productive time at work, finding that (with realistic variations in EAP price and employee compensation) the ROI of an EAP ranged from 3:1 for small size employers, 5:1 for medium size employers and 9:1 for large size employers. A typical counseling case yielded cost savings from about $2000-$3500 per case, mostly as a result from improvements in work presenteeism and reduced absenteeism. In addition, the level of EAP clinical case utilization needed for a ROI of $1:1 was only 1 in every 100 employees, regardless of company size.

Providing an EAP is an investment in your employees’ wellbeing, as well as a boost to your bottom line. For more information on how to Harness Health Partners can help organize an EAP for your team, contact us today.

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