March 25, 2021
Author: The Link Between
Another spring has sprung and we are now one full year into the COVID-19 pandemic – a pandemic that none of us saw coming and that has gripped us like nothing we have experienced before. Whether it be working from home or maintaining the frontline as an essential worker, all of us have had to make some adjustments over the course of the year and many believe that at least some of these adjustments are here to stay.
With that reality in mind, if you own your own business, there may not be a better time to look into a benefits plan for your employees. Now more than ever, employees require a plan that offers a higher level of personal assistance along with convenient, confidential and quick access to support programs.
The truth is that employee support is no longer just an option, but rather an expected part of employment and owning your business. Simply put, if you want your employees to remain loyal and productive, you need to ensure that they are cared for and if you would like to recruit top talent, you need to offer an inclusive employee experience that includes benefits, from the start.
Today, statistics show that employees are experiencing higher levels of stress, anxiety, depression and substance use disorders. And although traditional employee benefits plans are necessary, it’s also important to make sure that care is readily accessible for all of your employees. So, when you contemplate employee benefits and the varying plans available, consider this:
If one of your employees is consistently struggling with their job performance, their personal life or both due to an increase in stress and anxiety, would you prefer for your benefits plan to include access that is immediate to help that individual?
Knowing that the stigma of substance use disorders is real (44.5% do not get treatment because of stigma or job concerns) (1), would you like your plan to offer access that is both readily available and confidential for when your employee is ready to reach out for support?
When one of your employees experiences a medical incident, are they able to access professional support promptly without leaving their home?
Would you like your employee benefits plan to make it as easy and convenient for your employees to connect with professionals for personal support, as it is to submit a dental or health claim?
There are still so many unknowns and more questions than answers as it relates to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the one thing that has emerged during the pandemic is the critical need for employee support. Your employees are the very heart of your business and it is in your best interest (and theirs!) to keep them healthy, engaged, loyal and productive. The support access you provide for them needs to be readily available and easy to use because employee health is the key to your growing business.
SAMHSA. 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (Table 5.53A). SAMHSA. 2017.