We predict that more companies that want to excel will embrace proactive EAP and wellness providers that actively promote employee participation and utilization in 2015 and beyond.
Bloomington, IL (PRWEB) March 11, 2015
Chestnut Global Partners (CGP), a provider of culturally-aware employee assistance and wellness programs to companies worldwide, today announced its predictions for the top trends that will shape the EAP (Employee Assistance Program) and Wellness industry in 2015. The report is based on utilization trends among CGP's user base, and a survey of its customers to gain insights and perspectives on the coming year. CGP has identified five key developments that are expected to make a large impact on the market in 2015 and beyond: increased utilization of EAP and wellness services, the emergence of fatigue management programs as a productivity and disease management tool, increased use of and demand for mobile health applications, and rising awareness of the benefits of "fee-based" vs. "Free EAP”. Legislation across Europe will also have a significant impact on the industry, and is expected to expand employee participation and utilization in the coming year.
Top Five Trends:
- Increased Utilization and Problem Severity: CGP expects EAP and wellness utilization to steadily increase in the U.S. in 2015. For the second consecutive year, CGP’s EAP utilization in North America increased at a rate of 7.0% across its book of business. Reasons included challenges individuals reported in accessing alternative community mental health resources due to financial hardships, and requesting authorization to exceed EAP session limits due to being placed on a waiting list for a higher level of care. CGP also predicts an increase in problem severity or level of psychological stress, and EAPs increasingly important role in addressing serious employee mental health concerns. Utilization of EAP around the world will increase as well, as EAP continues to serve as the de facto mental health delivery service in many developing countries due to either an inadequate supply of mental health providers or inadequacies in the mental health delivery structure.
- Emergence of Fatigue Management as Productivity and Disease Management Tool. While the correlation of a good night’s sleep to one’s ability to function on a daily basis has been known for years, recent research is shedding light on the link between inadequate sleep and an increased risk for diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and depression. As a result, organizational safety and wellness programs should position themselves to offer services that target the underlying causes of fatigue, which range from undiagnosed medical conditions to unhealthy behavioral and lifestyle habits.
- Rising Awareness of the Value of “Fee-Based” vs. “Free EAPs”: There's a growing recognition that “free or embedded EAPs” typically do not offer the same level of service as fee-based programs, and thus may not best serve the organization’s primary objective. More organizations are viewing EAP through the lens of risk management and productivity, and realize the value of increasing employee participation in order to increase utilization, positive behavior change, and ultimately workplace outcomes.
- Technology Use Will Become More Central to EAP and Wellness. Recent innovations in technology and predictive analytics are changing -- and will continue to drive -- EAP and wellness service delivery. Some EAPs have already begun to include secure video and evidence-based smart phone apps into their product offering to help manage health conditions such as stress, depression, diabetes, and sleep. These trends will continue through 2015 and beyond.
- Increased Opportunities for EAPs in Europe Due to European Union (EU) Workplace Well-being Legislation. Recent European legislation on mental health now requires employers to create and implement strategies that reduce work-related stress. EAPs are well positioned as a third-party provider to help facilitate an ongoing dialogue between employees and employers within the works councils. Some of these new opportunities include providing workplace assistance and wellness across the EU, helping identify/address key causes of workplace stress, stress prevention training for employees and managers, and assistance in developing and communicating health promotion messages that enhance employee resiliency.
"Today's workers are asking for easier and broader access to resources that address stress, depression, diabetes, and sleep, and in ever-greater numbers are using mobile health apps to identify their conditions and track positive behavior change," said Matt Mollenhauer, VP of Operations for CGP. "Companies that are looking to improve employee productivity and retention -- those that want to be viewed as great places and attract top talent -- are driving the trends we've identified. We predict that more companies that want to excel will embrace proactive EAP and wellness providers that actively promote employee participation and utilization in 2015 and beyond."
The full report is available at: http://bit.ly/1E0KrLM
About Chestnut Global Partners
Chestnut Global Partners (CGP) is a behavioral health organization based in Bloomington, IL that offers a full range of culturally aware employee assistance and related workplace services. CGP combines EAP with wellness, disability, high risk maternity, employee safety and compliance management programs, designed to promote employee well-being, improve performance and reduce absenteeism.
Chestnut Global Partners serves companies in over 140 countries, including Brazil, China, India, Mexico and Russia.. Chestnut Global Partners’ Division of Commercial Science develops and deploys scientific assessment technologies, outcome measures, and analytical methodologies so that EAPs, wellness companies, disease management entities and purchasers the world over can determine the effects and/or worth of their programs. For more, visit http://www.chestnutglobalpartners.org.