When an employee has a work performance problem that may be the result of a personal issue, managers and/or HR should contact Claremont. Our consultants will help you determine the appropriate next steps, including whether or not a referral is appropriate. If you decide to refer, we guide you through the process, including whether to make a formal versus informal referral and how to have the conversation with the employee. For formal referrals, we obtain the necessary documentation and establish a follow-up plan.
The management referral process allows the EAP to address the cause of the problem, so that managers can stay focused on improving the employee’s job performance. To learn more, click here to watch our 7-minute video on the management referral process.
Managers (and colleagues) can encourage employees experiencing some personal challenges to seek counseling whether or not there is a work performance problem. With an informal referral, there is no Release of Information Form signed by the employee; therefore, Claremont will not report back to the manager regarding an employee’s participation, including whether or not the employee has contacted the EAP. Our consultants will help you decide if you should refer formally or informally.
What is an Informal Referral?
Managers (and colleagues) can be instrumental in motivating an employee to seek counseling via informal encouragement whether or not there is a work performance problem. An informal referral is just that: encouragement to participate in EAP services. It can be done verbally and/or by distributing the EAP brochure or wallet card. With an informal referral, there is no Release of Information Form signed by the employee; therefore, Claremont will not report back to the manager regarding an employee’s participation, including whether or not the employee has contacted the EAP.
When an employee’s behavior is impacting work performance, you should consider formally referring the employee to the EAP. With a formal referral, Claremont will confirm the employee’s participation in counseling with you. Claremont will only disclose this information if an employee signs a Release of Information. Our consultants will coach you through this process.
Participating in EAP counseling is always voluntary and managers cannot force employees to attend. However, by participating in a formal referral, an employee is demonstrating to you an effort to address underlying personal issues that have resulted in your work performance concerns. With the right approach it is rare for an employee to refuse an EAP referral.
The following “speech” can help you plan what you’re going to say when referring an employee to the EAP.
Formal and Informal Referrals
Everyone wants you to improve your performance, especially me. We all have personal challenges, and sometimes these challenges can show up on the job and start to affect work. I am not saying this is true in your case, but if it is, the EAP is available to help employees resolve personal problems. And, the EAP is free. But, regardless of whether you contact the EAP or not, you and I need to meet again in 30 days to review your progress concerning job performance.”Informal referrals
Your involvement with the EAP is completely confidential; they will not even tell me whether or not you have contacted the EAP.Formal referrals
I’ve talked with the EAP about your situation and we feel that it is in your best interest to allow the EAP to notify me as to whether or not you are participating in the counseling. I am not concerned about what you talk about during the visits, and that information will not be disclosed. I would like to know that you are attending the visits. This will demonstrate to me that you are making an effort to correct this problem. Let’s review and sign the “Release of Information” document to allow the EAP to notify me about whether or not you are attending the visits.