16 May 2016

Working abroad services deployed by The Health Insurance Group

The Health Insurance Group has introduced a global and expatriate Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) that provides help and support to people working abroad in crisis or need. Partnering with Morneau Shepell, the leading provider of integrated health and productivity solutions, The Health Insurance Group is offering a comprehensive suite of international assistance programmes including worldwide EAP, regardless of location and global intercultural solutions to help employees acclimatise to international assignments.

“Companies competing on a world stage have an obligation to provide the best care and support to employees who operate internationally.  And a move abroad can be made less traumatic by providing the right kind of support to address any personal issues or operational problems,” commented Sarah Dennis, Head of International for The Health Insurance Group.  “By delaying help these can sometimes manifest into more serious issues or significant business costs; affecting productivity or destabilising the working environment.”

The Health Insurance Group’s Global EAP is a support service that can help employees and their dependents to solve work and personal life matters, quickly and confidentially.  Callers have access to Masters-qualified care professionals 24 hours per day, 7 days a week.  The Global EAP services include: family-support counselling for childcare, education or care advice; financial services for wealth-planning; local legal expertise and assistance with daily living i.e. home maintenance and management problems.

The Intercultural solutions comprise Destination, Selection and Preparation and Repatriation services.

The Destination product helps employees and their families adapt to working abroad.  International assignments bring the challenges of adapting to an unfamiliar work environment, new co-workers and a foreign culture often with different values, customs and language.  Employees and their families are provided with logistical and practical support to ease their integration into a new country.

Selection and Preparation services scrutinises the employee-selection process through a rigorous review of personal and/or family risk factors that could affect the success of an international assignment.  Awareness and education programmes, as well as practical strategies and problem-solving skills, are given to employees and their families to maximise their chances of success.

Repatriation helps reintegrate and retains employees who are returning from abroad.  The assistance is available worldwide with options for expatriates who might be returning from long or short-term assignments, transitioning out of frequent international travel, terminating rotational arrangements or returning from overseas after being employed on a permanent local basis.

Richard Albert, Vice President, Global Business Development at Morneau Shepell added “Expatriate employees and their families face numerous challenges to acclimatise in a variety of circumstances and cultures.  Our services provide specialist support to meet these unique challenges, helping to enable a successful experience for all parties concerned.  The opportunity to work with a truly independent and specialist adviser as The Health Insurance Group is an exciting one for us.

Continued Dennis: “As one of the most feature-rich assistance programmes in today’s health insurance marketplace our Global EAP plan improves the chances of success for any international assignment.”

Morneau Shepell is the leading provider of integrated health and productivity solutions that address mental, social and physical health issues affecting employees and organisations.

Data from the Global Relocation Trends Survey 2014 report highlighted the “inability of the family to adjust” (61 per cent) is narrowly the second most-cited reason for international assignment failure, at just two per cent behind the top reason, “changing business conditions” (63 per cent).

The dataset, which is based on the experiences of 172 international mobility managers, who each manage an average 581 moves annually, also identifies the important role of the family even before a move takes place: 76 per cent of respondents rated “family or personal circumstances” as the key reason employees decline relocation assignments.