by Spectrum Wellness
There are a number of ways that employers can optimise their Employee Assistance Programme so that it will attract and appeal to younger employees and help to ensure their mental health needs are met. A good EAP should use modern and innovative strategies, techniques and content in various formats to make the service attractive, interesting and easily accessible to young employees so they are encouraged to reach out to their EAP for help with their specific needs. Here are 5 things to keep in mind that can help you boost the use of your EAP among your younger workers.
1 Use Modern Technology
Younger workers are very comfortable with, and often very reliant on, technology. Younger generations are used to being able to get what they are looking for quickly and easily from their smartphone, tablet or computers. An EAP should be the same and the more ways an employee can connect to it the better. The service should offer multiple, simple ways of accessing the service in addition to via the phone, such as quick access through an app, live online chat or video calling. Anyone and everyone, no matter where they are, can get the assistance they want, as soon as they want it.
Other efforts to make an EAP service more engaging using modern technology can include online screening and assessments of mental health, stress levels or lifestyle or online eLearning, webinars and podcasts on various subjects.
2 Promote your EAP in Fresh and Inventive Ways
Technology can also be used to effectively promote your EAP to employees of all generations. Cast a wide net and share a variety of content about your EAP across various channels. Hard copy materials such as business cards, leaflets and posters are less effective with younger employees than electronic forms of communication. To communicate key features and updates to the service, use interactive emails with videos and links, blog posts, articles, social media posts or even interactive challenges that encourage people to get involved or take action for themselves around their mental health. Make sure the presence of your EAP is highly visible on local company networks and intranets. If employees see articles, blogs and health and wellness challenges daily when they log onto their work computers, they’ll be more likely to take notice and engage with their EAP.
Visual content, printed or online, should use clean and modern designs with streamlined fonts, brighter colours and contemporary messages to make it more appealing to younger workers.
3 Address Topics that are Relevant to Younger Workers
To attract younger employees, an EAP should clearly address topics and issues that are specifically relevant to employees in the younger age groups. It should be widely communicated that the EAP can help with issues commonly faced by younger workers, for example financial queries around first time buying or struggles as a new parent. Topics on time management, career planning and stress are also popular with younger workers. Blogs, workshops, seminars and other presentations should address these kinds of issues to attract younger workers and help them to improve their wellbeing.
4 Focus on Tangible Benefits and Savings
The best way to sell young people on an EAP is to make it more than just an abstract idea. An EAP should integrate a number of work/life services and be able to provide its users with real, practical ways of making improvements to their mental health, wellbeing and life overall. Companies should emphasise the benefits of an EAP, and how, by providing quick easy and free access to counselling, financial experts, online and onsite learning and more, it can help employees achieve better mental and physical health, handle their money better, cope with stress more effectively and quite simply, lead better lives.
5 Train Management Effectively
An EAP works best if managers are able to lead by example and spread the word to others. Managers should engage with and take advantage of their EAP, so that they can learn first-hand its benefits and share their findings with their teams. Training for managers and supervisors around mental health issues and the services offered by the EAP, can also help to familiarise management around their role in helping employees navigate through work stress or personal issues and how the EAP can help. Specific training on managing employees from different generations can also be particularly helpful in preparing management to support the specific needs of their team members across all ages.