How Employee Assistance Programs Support HR Recruitment & Relocation Efforts

Mark Sagor


Relocation boxYou may have noticed that Comprehensive EAP has been featuring a “We help with everything” theme in many of our communications this year. The reason for this is straightforward: despite our continuing efforts to communicate the incredible diversity and breadth of services we offer organizations and their employees, many people still think only of mental health counseling (and maybe dependent care assistance) when they think about EAP.

I have previously written about how EAPs can be valuable partners when it comes to responding to some of the major challenges facing organizations: managing performance, improving employee health, and dealing with crises.

We are also able to help HR with some of the essential, and time-consuming, tasks associated with recruitment and relocation. We serve many organizations with 50 to 500 employees and employers of this size really appreciate the bench strength that an EAP brings to their HR team when they need an extra set of hands to assist with a complicated recruitment.

For example, we were contacted by the director of human resources at a manufacturing firm located in a suburban area in New England (note: some of the details have been changed to preserve privacy). She was working hard to recruit an executive to join the company, and wanted to provide him with information about the surrounding communities.

The executive had two school aged children. His daughter, age 12, was very involved in sports, playing both soccer and tennis. His 8 year old son had autism and attended a special school. His wife was an active community volunteer in a library-based literacy program. The family was also very active in their local Episcopal church.

The HR director wanted to provide the candidate with a packet of information to facilitate relocation for the executive’s entire family. Our consultant advised that she would begin research immediately and have her report completed the next day.

The consultant was able to use the relocation center module on our website to reference demographic information about local surrounding communities, real estate, houses of worship, public school information and weather. She used our database of private school information to locate and contact two area schools with programs for children with autism. She contacted local recreation centers and found information on local sports programs that offered both soccer and tennis. She then researched volunteer opportunities using the volunteer opportunity tool on our website; several literacy programs, including one in a local library system, were identified as possibilities.

Our consultant gathered websites and contact information for all the resources and produced a packet of information that she sent to the HR director to include with their job offer.

About a week later we learned that the candidate had accepted the job and would be relocating to New England. The HR director estimated that this research would have taken her at least 2 days to complete.

I’ll bet that many of you didn’t know that EAPs provide that kind of service.