HR FESTIVAL europe 31.05.-01.06.2022

It is our pleasure to invite you to visit us at the HR FESTIVAL europe (formerly Personal Swiss) at the Messe Zurich-Oerlikon on May 31 and June 01, 2022. You will find ICAS at booth C 09 in hall 4 (right next to the Action Stage). HR FESTIVAL europe is organized by HR Today, the widest-reaching and best-known specialist magazine for Human Resources in Switzerland.

How are your employees doing after two pandemic years and in a world that has generally become a less secure place? How can companies support their employees in maintaining their mental balance? On this topic, ICAS will hold a masterclass on “The evolution of mental health in organizations and lessons learned from the pandemic” on June 01 at 12:30 in conference room 7 (in German).

The speaker, Mathieu Wilkens, is a clinical psychologist and psychotherapist and Head of Psychological Services at ICAS. In his presentation, he will share insights from his experience in psychological counseling practice.

We warmly invite you to attend this free masterclass and look forward to your subsequent visit to our booth.

Get your free ticket here.

EAP provider ICAS 2022 again recognized as “Top Brand Corporate Health Service Provider”

The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a proven instrument to sustainably reduce psychological stress among employees. As one of the leading international EAP providers, ICAS 2022 received the “Top Brand Corporate Health Service Provider” award, as it did already in the previous year.

The market research institute EuPD Research awards this title on the basis of nominations by companies with certified health management and independent auditing by the “BDO Wirtschaftsprüfungsgesellschaft”.

This proof of quality provides decision-makers with an important criterion for selecting suitable service providers.

The special range of services offered by ICAS includes multinational and multilingual psychological counseling for employees around the clock, additional legal and family counseling, a wide variety of training courses offered within the ICAS Academy, a nationwide network of cooperating psychotherapists, and the highest standards in data protection (including SQS certification Good Priv@cy).

For more information on the award please visit (in German):
https://www.presseportal.de/pm/143641/5147656

Psychological side effects of the pandemic

Psychological side effects of the pandemic – Findings by EAP provider ICAS emerging from their counseling

Download article as pdf

The fact that the pandemic has a negative effect on our mental health has by now been sufficiently proven by various studies and scientific articles. This trend can also be clearly seen in day-to-day counseling provided by ICAS. As an EAP provider, ICAS offers employees 24/7 psychological and emotional support, as well as legal advice. Specifically, the number of complex cases that required face-to-face counseling sessions with a psychotherapist increased by 60% in the first half of 2021 compared to the same period in the previous year.

Significant increase in work-related stress

Big changes were felt particularly as far as workload was concerned. These cases increased dramatically by 105% in comparison with the same period of last year.

Cases where employees suffered from work-related stress saw an increase of 32% and cases of burnout also grew by 63%. The only downward trend in the workplace were conflicts, which, in years gone by, were actually the most frequently mentioned work-related topic. The pandemic, and more specifically its effects on work life, especially the home office, seems to have changed the way people experience and handle stress considerably.  

There are numerous reasons for this:

  • Working times have increased – subconsciously in many cases – because disengaging from work is more difficult in a home office situation.
  • Employees are now entirely responsible for structuring their day, whereas this was previously determined much more by colleagues and processes.
  • According to research recently conducted by LinkedIn, 20% of respondents feel more under pressure to reply to emails quicker than before.
  • No or too few breaks: Even if it does not seem to make sense to have to slow down to become faster – taking regular breaks can improve mental health significantly, reduce the risk of burnout, and increase productivity.
  • No longer seeing work colleagues may result in fewer conflicts, but as can be seen by the ICAS analysis results, social contact in the workplace is an important factor that helps in dealing with stress.

Does this mean that the new working world is bad for us?

It depends what you make of it. On the one hand, a home office may lead to more pressure in that we feel we have to be available constantly so as to prove that we are actually working. This results in increased stress levels and is poison for mental health management, which can then severely impact on our work performance.

On the other hand, many employees say they can concentrate better in a home office and thus work more effectively. They feel that they are more productive and also have a better work-life balance. These employees tend to work for management that recognizes how vital the health of their staff is for successful work in the business. Management often plays a key role in preventing stress dynamics and motivating employees to keep up their performance over the long term. What helps as regards home office work, for example, is clear communication of expectations: Are we expected to be available in the evenings as well and to reply to emails, or can we “switch off”?

Managers’ tasks have become more complex

The tasks of managers have grown in complexity and importance. This makes another observation all the more staggering: The percentage of management consulting sessions during the period surveyed between 2020 and 2021 dropped by half. This development suggests that managers were not able to “sense” what employees were feeling in the same way as before because of the remote working situation and therefore were not aware of any increased stress. Another reason could be that managers feel stressed themselves and consequently struggle to find enough time and energy for their employees.

In any event, an outside perspective is extremely important, especially in these times. Discussions with colleagues or a coach help overcome difficult management situations – when dealing with stressed employees, for example.

Pandemic-related increase of personal problems as well

The pandemic has not only changed our work lives but also affected many aspects of our private lives.

Cases resulting from relationship problems have increased by 22% compared to the same period in the previous year. And an increase of 18% has also been recorded in problems with alcohol, drugs, and gambling addiction.

A particularly significant increase was also seen in cases of depression and anxiety, which were 41% higher in the first half of 2021 than in the first six months of 2020. The longer the pandemic is with us, the higher these cases will be, both in terms of numbers and severity.

Although families with school-age children were particularly affected at the start of the pandemic because of home schooling, this has now changed. Noteworthy is that mostly people who live on their own are currently struggling more with the effects of the pandemic than those who share a household with others. This is largely as a result of feeling isolated and lonely.

Influence of management on personal problems

When it comes to personal problems such as these, most managers feel out of their depth. Naturally, managers cannot solve the personal problems of employees. Nonetheless, person-al problems also manifest themselves in day-to-day work by impacting on the performance, which means that they do become relevant for managers. Although it is their duty to ensure the wellbeing of their employees and they should therefore engage with the employee in question, they should take care to separate professional and personal interactions. Mastering this balancing act requires skill, good communication, a clear plan, and sound preparation.
In cases like these, the EAP (Employee Assistance Program) can be a good tool to help ad-dress professional problems that employees may have as a result of private issues. Affected employees are provided professional psychological support around the clock, while managers fulfill their duty of care.

ICAS also offers a range of management training programs that help managers to improve and develop the new skills required.

Download ICAS Academy brochure

Mental Health Corona

Mental health in times of Corona: new factsheet from the Federal Office of Public Health FOPH

On behalf of the Federal Council, the Federal Office of Public Health FOPH is initiating a campaign in December to raise public awareness of mental health in times of Corona.

The personal well-being at the end of October is judged significantly worse than in summer – and is again at a similar level as at the beginning of the pandemic in March. While the emotional load in the first wave was primarily an expression of the immediate threat, the focus is now shifting to a situation in which we feel that our emotional resources for coping with the ongoing crisis are gradually being exhausted.

The FOPH has summarized its findings in a factsheet (German version).

Factsheet “Mental Health in Times of Corona, FOPH, December 2020

Support your employees and managers through the crisis by offering them our ICAS CAP Crisis Assistance Program

The Covid-19 crisis still affects our everyday life. Uncertainty remains and a return to normality might not be for a while. Many companies are still working remote or have sent their employees back to the home office. In this isolation, employees are often confronted with personal fears, loneliness and insecurity. With the ICAS CAP, you offer your employees orientation and support in difficult private and professional situations. Our experienced counselors are available 24/7 by telephone or live chat. Counseling is 100% anonymous and confidential.

The ICAS CAP Crisis Assistance Program supports your employees during the coronavirus pandemic as follows: 

  • 24/7 counseling and support by phone or live chat for emotional or psychological issues (e.g. fears and worries regarding the coronavirus pandemic)
  • Personal counseling (1-8 sessions) with a psychotherapist via a secured video connection
  • Brochure in electronic format (PDF)
  • Introductory video
  • Anonymous final statistics about the use of the service

Price per employee CHF 25.00* for a fixed term of 6 months

ICAS CAP+ (optional extra to the offer above)

  • Telephone support for practical and legal questions

Additional cost per employee CHF 16.00*

*All prices excl. sales tax

Download ICAS CAP flyer

ICAS RAP Restart Assistance Program

RAP supports your organization and employees in achieving a successful restart – by helping them help themselves.

ICAS RAP Restart Assistance Program

The coronavirus pandemic has had a significant effect on society and the economy. Life is no longer what we’re used to. This results in stress, anxiety, and mental blocks. To get off to a flying start after the lockdown and to be able to overcome the challenges of the economic crisis, however, companies need the full potential of their executives and their staff. The ICAS RAP Restart Assistance Program supports your organization, your executives and your employees in achieving a successful restart.

RAP for your organization

Instead of longing for the predictable times we enjoyed before the crisis, companies will have to keep reinventing themselves in many areas over the next few months. Business agility and creativity are more important than ever to remain successful despite the looming economic crisis. Organizations that can rely on strong, prudent executives and healthy, motivated employees will be able to take off despite the uncertain times that lie ahead. We will assist you in keeping your most important resources – your employees – healthy and productive.

RAP for your executives

The new working world will hold particular challenges for executives: dealing with stressed em-ployees, managing virtual teams, resolving resistance, driving innovation processes, all while achieving high targets – an ideal breeding ground for work-related stress. Add to that personal stress – and the limits are quickly reached. To avoid loss in performance as a result of this, execu-tives also need a professional, independent, and anonymous point of contact that can coach them through the times that lie ahead.

RAP for your employees

Dealing with changes is never easy. No longer working from home, anxieties about the future, financial problems, relationship issues, and family worries are all stress factors that not only impact negatively on health, behavior, and performance. They also cause mental blocks, lead to apathy, and can result in complete breakdowns due to illness if they’re ignored. Provide your employees with an option to seek help from experienced psychologists early on, as they see fit, and entirely anonymously – so that they can remain healthy and contribute to your company’s
success.

The ICAS RAP Restart Assistance Program includes: 

  • 24/7 counseling and support by phone or live chat for emotional or psychological issues
  • Personal counseling (1-8 sessions) with a psychotherapist via a secured video connection of face-to-face
  • Brochure in electronic format (PDF)
  • Introductory video
  • Anonymous final statistics about the use of the service
  • Three webinars for executives on the following topics:
    Management in difficult times – Ideas for proactive organizational design, agility, leadership
    Dealing with stressed employees – Early recognition, appropriate response on the part of managers
    Increasing creativity and optimism – What distinguishes successful people?

Price per employee CHF 25* for a fixed term of 6 months

ICAS RAP+ (optional extra to the offer above)

  • Telephone support for practical and legal questions

Additional cost per employee CHF 16*

*All prices excl. sales tax

Download ICAS RAP flyer

 

CAP Crisis Assistance Program – supports your employees during the coronavirus pandemic

The ICAS CAP Crisis Assistance Program supports your employees during the coronavirus pandemic:

  • CAP as a solution to the drawbacks of working from home
    Work still has to be done even in social isolation and despite the change in conditions. The CAP provides specific help for this individual internal and external transition process at all times by offering the exchange of experiences and practical solutions.
  • CAP as a solution to the drawbacks of being on lockdown
    Access to experts in daily life is restricted but sometimes, it is a necessity. Many experienced counselors are available in the CAP around the clock by phone, chat and video and provide practical instructions as a tool for self-help. The CAP supports your employees during the coronavirus pandemic.
  • CAP as a solution to personal insecurities
    Fear during a pandemic is completely normal. The CAP allows issues and/or fears to be discussed at any time with no time limit. This also applies to everyone in the employee’s household as these people have a significant impact on your employees working from home.
  • CAP as a solution to internal doubts
    No pandemic goes on forever. We will come out the other side of it. A talk with the CAP experts can boost this outlook and optimism and allows your employees to concentrate on the current work.

The ICAS CAP Crisis Assistance Program supports your employees during the coronavirus pandemic as follows: 

  • 24/7 counseling and support by phone or live chat for emotional or psychological issues (e.g. fears and worries regarding the coronavirus pandemic)
  • Personal counseling (1-8 sessions) with a psychotherapist via a secured video connection
  • Brochure in electronic format (PDF)
  • Introductory video
  • Anonymous final statistics about the use of the service

Price per employee CHF 25.00* for a fixed term of 6 months

ICAS CAP+ (optional extra to the offer above)

  • Telephone support for practical and legal questions

Additional cost per employee CHF 16.00*

*All prices excl. sales tax

Download ICAS CAP flyer

ICAS Schweiz AG | Employee training for mental strength

ICAS reinvents the Employee Assistance Program EAP

Up to now, it has been difficult for smaller companies to be included in a counseling and support programme of an EAP provider. ICAS closes this gap with the new service ICAS EAP Pure, which Swiss companies can buy online. Through the straightforward purchase process and the possibility of immediate implementation, companies and employees directly benefit from the advantages of the ICAS Employee Assistance Program. Learn more.