Client Testimonials Say It Best
In their own words, these clients tell how Mercy EAP made a difference:
The City of Cedar Rapids
The City of Cedar Rapids, a Mercy EAP client since 1987, has 1,300 full-time employees. In a recent statement, the city credited "involvement in the EAP for reducing its cost for treatment of mental health and substance abuse by 18%."
Lora Summerwill, the city's Safety Manager, says the drop in mental health care claims has been "very noticeable" since they turned to Mercy's EAP.
"Because of EAP," she says, "our supervisors are more productive and our employees are more productive. EAP isn't just a place you unload. They actually find a way to help the employee get connected with the right resource.... I believe our EAP is our best benefit, next to health insurance."
PMX Industries, with 463 employees, has used Mercy EAP since early 2000. Mark Grenko, Director of Human Resources, says a solid percentage of their employees use the program each year. It's worth it, he said, "because of the payback. And it also helps us reach out to the family side of the workplace, because this program helps family members too."
He adds, "It gives the employee a choice. Instead of using discipline all the time and not really getting to the bottom of the problem, we can refer them to EAP. Everyone who's gone through it has had good comments. They'll talk with other employees and let others know it's there. It's something the company is offering them. It's a definite plus."
Oral B, with 500 employees in its Iowa City operation, has been a Mercy EAP client since 1997. During significant layoffs and downsizing in recent years, Mercy's EAP was critical in helping employees and supervisors cope, through personal counseling and large group sessions on-site. About 5% of the workforce has used the program, says Becky Hasler, Employee Relations Manager, and absenteeism has improved.
"We've worked at being survivors," Hasler says. "The EAP has been such a good benefit to help people who have stress and anxieties. There are so many complex situations that occur here at work; our supervisors are not counselors. When people have personal problems, it absolutely affects their work. It has been so good to rely on someone else to counsel them outside the workplace."
EAP also helped in dealing with the unexpected deaths of three employees in three years.
"That was very hard. It was three very different sets of circumstances and very difficult scenarios," Hasler says. "EAP came down and talked with our people for some on-site counseling.... It's been a very good program, and it's helped me as a manager."
Gazette Communications, with 800 employees, has been a Mercy EAP client for more than 10 years. Mary Collins, Human Resources Specialist, says employees appreciate the program.
"It's among the more highly-regarded benefits," she says. "It's there if you need it. And people value it. It's a positive morale-builder. Managers realize they don't have the expertise to deal with these things. We have day-to-day issues in the workplace and we need help. The resource to call is Mercy EAP and the assistance that's been extended has really helped. We're confident in that, and so are our employees."
Mercy's EAP has helped with a variety of issues, from interpersonal conflict between coworkers to personal family crises.
"Their attentiveness to our need was very timely," she says. "And with personal emergencies, Mercy was there, helping coworkers deal with it. These things can be very sensitive, and Mercy EAP counselors are attuned to that."