• 20 Years of EAP Cost-Benefit Research - Part 2 of 3: Taking the Pareto Path to ROI

      Attridge, Mark (Employee Assistance Professionals Association (EAPA), 2010-07)
      The second paper in 3-part series honoring the 20-year anniversary of the McDonnell Douglas internal EAP program research study that examined changes in health care claims, employee accidents and other outcomes for small samples of high-risk counseling clients. This article review literature and logical arguments in favor of this kind of approach to ROI for EAP - finding high-value cost savings for small numbers of high-risk employees who use EAP counseling. This approach emphasizes the classic EAP Core Technology principles. Some studies have shown that EAPs have a positive financial impact that offsets their cost, but few of these studies have been pubished in peer-review journals.
    • 20 Years of EAP Cost-Benefit Research - Part 3 of 3: Taking the Productivity Path to ROI

      Attridge, Mark (Employee Assistance Professionals Association (EAPA), 2010-10)
      The final article in a three-part series of outcomes in employee assistance in 20 years since pioneering applied research study by internal EAP program at McDonnell Douglas Corporation in the United States. This article reviews large-size studies (N > 26,000; N >59,000; N > 3,500) that measured improvements in work absenteeism and work productivity by users of EAP counseling. The main idea is that rather than emphasizing the potential for healthcare cost savings derived from small part of EAP cases that are more high risk (for alcohol/drug or psychiatric disorders) - as was examined in the McDonnell Douglas study and called the "pareto path" to value - it makes more sense to focus on the large percentage of EAP cases that have workplace-based cost savings form reduced absenteeism and restored productivity after counseling.
    • Answering 10 Questions: EAP Reports Should Answer 10 Basic Questions that Drive Purchaser Expectations About the Value of Employee Assistance Services.

      Attridge, Mark (Employee Assistance Professionals Association (EAPA), 2007-07)
      Strategic discussion of best practices in collecting data, conducting analyses and presenting results of annual utilization for employer customers of employee assistance program services.
    • The Business Case Bibliography: 100 Review Papers on the Workplace Value of Mental Health, Addiction and EAP Services

      Attridge, Mark (Employee Assistance Society of North America, 2011-12)
      This Note provides a list of 100 recent review papers on the topic of making the business case for providing mental health and addiction services to employees and their family members. This list has a special emphasis on employee assistance program (EAP) services, which already serve many work organizations and are often an effective source of referrals into mental health and addiction care treatment for more serious cases and for immediate short­‐term counseling for more minor cases. Most of these works examine financial issues of cost­‐benefit, cost­‐effectiveness and return on investment (ROI) as well as other behavior­‐ based outcomes of value to employers such as improvements in employee performance, employee engagement, positive work culture, risk management, work absence, work productivity/presenteeism, health care costs, disability costs, and turnover. The list includes works from the United States, Canada, and other Western countries.
    • The Business Value of EAP: A Conceptual Model

      Attridge, Mark; Amaral, Thomas M., 1952-; Bjornson, Tom; Goplerud, Eric N.; Herlihy, Patricia A.; McPherson, Tracy L.; Paul, Rich; Routledge, Sandra; Sharar, David A., 1961-; Stephenson, Diane; et al. (Employee Assistance Society of North America, 2010-05)
      This Research Note describes how to conceptualize the different ways that employee assistance services provide business value to an organization. The model features three major categories or levels of value: Workplace Performance Value – which has cost savings from employee productivity, absence and other human capital areas; Benefit Cost Value – which has cost savings from health care, disability and other employee benefits; and Organizational Value – which has cost savings from risk management and improved organizational development.
    • The Business Value of Employee Assistance: A Review of the Art and Science of ROI (EAPA 2013 Keynote Address)

      Attridge, Mark (2013-10-19)
      Dr. Attridge reviews the science, strategies and future trends influencing the business value of employee assistance program (EAP) services. The talk opens by examining the empirical evidence relevant to the return on investment (ROI) for workplace behavioral health services. Over 1,000 individual research works now exist globally that support various aspects of the business case, including dozens of studies specifically on the outcomes and cost-offset value of EAP services. Next, the themes from this research are used to formulate different strategies for making the business case for EAP. Four conceptual models – called the Primary, Pareto, Productivity, and Partnership approaches to value – are each described and illustrated with data examples. These approaches work best when combined into a more comprehensive model that reflects the mix of services delivered by the EAP. Finally, several "big-picture" trends are identified in the areas of technology tools, outcome measures, healthy workplace culture and technology. These trends offer important new opportunities for increasing the business value of EAPs. Reference List included.
    • Comparing Improvement After EAP Counseling for Different Outcomes and Clinical Context Factors in Over 16,000 EAP Cases Worldwide

      Attridge, Mark; DeLapp, Gregory P.; Herlihy, Patricia A.; Ihnes, Pamela; Jacquart, Mike; Lennox, Richard; London, Marina; Servizio, Lou; Sharar, David A., 1961- (2017-09-15)
      The Workplace Outcome Suite (WOS) is an easy-to-administer tool developed by Chestnut Global Partners (CGP) Division of Commercial Science. It uses a short, precise, and easy-to-administer survey that collects EAP specific outcome data both before (pre – at start of the counseling) and after (post – usually after 3 months) EAP services. Thus, the WOS is a measure of change that examines five key aspects of workplace functioning: absenteeism, presenteeism, work engagement, workplace distress, and life satisfaction. The WOS is currently the only publicly available, free instrument that has been psychometrically validated and tested for use in EAP settings. See the 2016 WOS Report for a discussion of how it is administered, basic calculation methods for change over time, and the history of the development of the full 25-item, 9-item and brief 5-item versions.
    • EAP & Work-Life Integration: Research Update and Case Study of Tutoring

      Attridge, Mark (Employee Assistance Professionals Association, 2015-09-30)
      My new column "Integration Insights" published quarterly in the Journal of Employee Assistance in 2015, recognizes that a majority of EAPs now also offer both work-life and wellness services. Collaboration with these other programs offer opportunities for EAPs to provide added business value. Implications are discussed for how program integration and expansion of services enhances the EAP partnership with multiple areas within the organization. Employer case studies are reviewed. This presentation also focuses on employee and family educational support and tutoring services as a new kind of partner program. Findings are presented from a literature review white paper and a survey of 345 employees concerning their child’s use of an online private tutoring service at a Fortune 100 company.
    • EAP Business Case Research: Human Capital Outcome Metrics

      Attridge, Mark (2005-08-10)
      This presentation provides an overview of research that examines the business case and outcomes from employee assistance and work/life services. The presentation has four areas. Part 1. EAP Business Value Model; Part 2. Integration Trends and Models; Part 3.Role of Partners in Driving Value; and Part 4. Measurement Implications
    • EAP Effectiveness and ROI

      Attridge, Mark; Amaral, Thomas M., 1952-; Bjornson, Tom; Goplerud, Eric N.; Herlihy, Patricia A.; McPherson, Tracy L.; Paul, Rich; Routledge, Sandra; Sharar, David A., 1961-; Stephenson, Diane; et al. (Employee Assistance Society of North America, 2009-10)
      This Research Note reviews the results of studies examining the level of user satisfaction, the general effectiveness of EAP core services and the financial return on investment (ROI) for employee assistance programs.
    • EAP Impact On Health Care Claims Costs: What Are The Research Findings and What Do They Imply for Today’s EAPs?

      Attridge, Mark; Amaral, Thomas M., 1952- (EAP Technology Systems, 2010-02)
      This brief summarizes a review of the research literature relevant to the following questions regarding the business value of EAPs: Q1: Do EAPs have a significant positive impact on health care claims costs? Q2: If yes, what is the extent and nature of that positive impact? The research investigations addressing these kinds of questions are often described as “cost-offset” studies. In other words, are the costs related to EAP services and associated treatments provided to employees offset, at the very least, by decreases in health care claims costs? Implications for EAP are discussed.
    • EAP Industry Outcomes for Employee Absenteeism and Presenteeism: A Global Research Analysis

      Attridge, Mark (2016-11-02)
      This study standardized the results from a variety of different client- and clinician-rated measures of work absence and work productivity that were collected at pre and post use of the EAP. This super dataset represents the experiences of over 240,000 individual employees users of EAP counseling over 20 years of service delivery from 20 different EAPs in six countries (Australia, Canada, China, Netherlands, South Africa and the United States). The change in absenteeism showed a reduction in work absence from an average of 13.04 hours per case per month before EAP to 6.44 hours during the most recent month at follow-up after use of EAP counseling. For presenteeism, the average employee user of the EAP was functioning at a 64% level of productivity during the month before use of the EAP (on a 0-100% scale; with the typical “healthy” employee at 84%). But this initial rather severe deficit changed to a more normal level of 79% when assessed several months later at follow-up after completing EAP counseling. When using a standard full-time work schedule of 160 hours a month and adjusting the total time at work for absence hours when not at work at Pre and Post periods, this level of unproductivity is equivalent to a total of 52.9 hours of presenteeism before use of the EAP and 32.3 hours after the use of EAP. When absenteeism and presenteeism are combined, the month before use of EAP was 66.0 hours and the month after at follow-up was 39.7. This is a difference in which the typical EAP counseling case experienced 27.25 hours less of lost productive time (i.e., 6.6 fewer hours of missed work (absenteeism) and 20.7 fewer hours of lost productive time while at work (presenteeism) per month after use of the EAP). Note that presenteeism accounts for about 80% of the 27.2 total hours of restored work productivity after EAP counseling. Preventing 3.4 days of lost productivity per month is a substantial outcome considering that the true effect of EAP counseling is several times larger taking into account that the typical course of clinical distress if untreated could extend for a period of several months with varying levels of severity and associated work impairment.
    • EAP ROI Calculator© - Conceptual Approach and Default Data Inputs: Research Review Appendix

      Attridge, Mark; Servizio, Lou; Sharar, David A., 1961- (Chestnut Global Partners & Disease Management Strategy Group, 2015)
    • Evolution of EAP: Historical Changes Over 30 Years and What Purchasers Want Today From Employee Assistance Vendors

      Attridge, Mark (2018-08-08)
      This slide presentation shares the results of a survey study conducted in 2018. It asked about three issues: 1) How the employee assistance program industry has changed over the past 30 years? - 2) What is important to purchasers of EAP today for buying services in general - and 3) Why employers decide to purchase one EAP over other EAPs? Data is from 155 senior level professionals with average of 23 years experience in EAP field.
    • Future Trends in Organizational Risk Management: Survey Results and Implications for EAPs in Europe

      Attridge, Mark (2017-06-16)
      This presentation examines the research literature to identify trends in evidence-based best practices that employee assistance providers (EAPs) can use to better manage the behavioral health risks of the organizations they serve. There are six themes: 1. Risk Prevalence in Workplace; 2. Risk Cost Burden to Employers; 3. Risk Prevention by EAP; 4. Risk Identification by EAP; 5. Risk Reduction After Use of EAP; and 6. Reduction in Cost Burden (ROI for EAP). Today we will use a presentation format of: a) Key research facts from literature; b) Findings from our 2017 survey of 48 EAPs; and c) Discussion and comments.
    • How to Calculate the ROI for EAP Counseling from Improvements in Work Outcomes: Part 2 of Series with Global Data from the Workplace Outcome Suite© by Morneau Shepell

      Attridge, Mark; Sharar, David A., 1961-; Veder, Barb; Steenstra, Ivan (Employee Assistance Society of North America, 2020)
      This is the second in a three-part series based on the larger Workplace Outcome Suite© (WOS) Annual Report for 2018.1 This popular self- report measurement tool was developed by Chestnut Global Partners in 2010 and is now owned by Morneau Shepell. It is a scientifically validated tool that is offered free to the employee assistance field. This paper presents a revised version of the chapter on the return on investment (ROI) from the 2018 WOS Annual Report. The aim is to provide a detailed example of how to calculate the business value for employee assistance programs (EAPs) based on employee users of counseling services. In this example, 24,363 cases with self-reported work absenteeism hours and work presenteeism ratings were used to estimate the ROI for EAPs. The combination of missed hours from work and lost productivity hours while at work were combined in a single metric of lost productive time (LPT). The improvement in productivity was compared to a no change estimate hypothetical condition which assumes that the same baseline level of deficit in LPT continued over a 3-month period of distress if untreated. This effect was adjusted down to remove the improvement likely to have been caused by naturally occurring influences other than use of EAP counseling (estimated at 23%). Changes in the outcomes revealed that almost five days of productive work time (39 hours) over the 3-month period were restored per case after the use of EAP counseling; worth an estimated $1,731 USD per EAP case. Most of the savings came from reduced work presenteeism rather than work absenteeism (79% vs. 21%, respectively). This outcome was then used in a model with industry averages for the level of annual utilization of EAP counseling (4.9% of all covered employees) and the total cost of the EAP program ($13 per employee per year). The result was an estimated ROI for EAP counseling of $5.19:$1.00.
    • Increasing the Human Capital Impact and Financial ROI of Employee Assistance Programs

      Beyer, Cal; Dyme, Bernard S. (The Construction Users Roundtable (CURT), by Matrix Group Publishing Inc., 2021)
      Shortly after the onset of the pandemic in 2020, Cal Beyer and Bernie Dyme collaborated on an article titled “Why Employee Assistance Programs Are Valuable During and After COVID-19.”1 Almost a year and a half later, the advice offered remains relevant. Mental health and wellbeing continue to be top of mind. Yet, Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) continue to be an underutilized resource by employers and employees. In fact, a vast majority of EAP sponsors Cal Beyer has collaborated with, have seldom considered the utilization rate, organizational impacts, or ROI of their EAPs. Employers sponsoring an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) must build a collaborative partnership to broaden the EAP from crisis-based mental illness counseling to holistic mental wellbeing and life/work balance. On top of that, we would like to encourage employers to demonstrate a caring culture focused on transparency and psychological safety to instill a prevention-oriented approach and destigmatize mental health. The goal is for employees to feel safe to openly ask for and seek help around their mental wellness.
    • Integration Insights Column #7: Implications of Pricing for EAP Integration and ROI

      Attridge, Mark (Employee Assistance Professionals Association (EAPA), 2017-01-01)
      This article explores the implications of a financial budget devoted to EAP services and how it either promotes or limits, the opportunities for creating effective partnerships and key integration. I summarize key points from my EAP Talks keynote presentation on the Organizational Health Map conceptual model at EAPA’s 2016 World EAP Conference in Chicago.
    • Making the Business Case for EAP and Work/Life

      Attridge, Mark (2004-01-10)
      Presentation for EAP industry professionals. Review of research on the business case for EAP services. Focus on conceptual model developed by Attridge and Amaral with three components of business value: human capital, health claims and organizational.