Going global with your employee assistance and wellness programs? Make sure they are culturally relevant.

Over the next ten years, 75% of all United States-based companies will enter and compete in more countries1, yet 82% of these employers are seeking a single-source vendor solution for their employee assistance program (EAP) and wellness solution.1

If you’re considering an EAP and wellness program for international employees and expatriates, make sure you look beyond applying a U.S.-centric approach. Instead, consider cultural preferences.

For example, Optum recently worked with a multinational Fortune 500 company seeking to engage employees in 15 different companies on the topic of nutrition. On this topic alone, we found widely differing preferences among employees:

  • Australia preferred group presentations led by a nutrition expert.
  • India preferred 1:1 consultations with a dietitian to explore specific personal questions.
  • Thailand requested education on nutrition for improving memory and Alzheimer’s.
  • New Zealand wanted more education about healthy food groups.
  • Hong Kong recorded a very strong response to the topic of nutrition as it relates to mindfulness.

In order to maximize program participation, we encouraged each region/site to tailor the program to its employees’ specific preferences. These insights drove tailored engagement materials, unique to each market, which were then supported by on-the-ground local delivery throughout the region.

It’s a custom approach and one that’s necessary to achieve maximize productivity and reduce absenteeism — goals we can all agree on, regardless of location.

To learn more, download our case study or watch video.

¹Society of HR Managers, “Global firms in 2020: The next decade of change for organizations and workers.” September 2010.

One thought on “Going global with your employee assistance and wellness programs? Make sure they are culturally relevant.

  1. Great read on how to accommodate Employee Assistance and Wellness globally. I’d recommending looking into Crossover (www.crossover.com) to find global talent and maximize productivity from a global workforce!

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