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  • Writer's picturePeak Benefit Solutions Team

Enhancing Workplace Well-being: Arete EAP's Impact on Small Business Productivity in Ontario

by Matthew Howell, CHS, Employee Benefits Consultant, Quinte Ontario

Trends and Connections

I have the privilege of working with several communities through the Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan and I'd like delve deeper into a topic vital for our teams' well-being and business success – the profound influence of Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs), specifically Arete's, on mental health and productivity in the workplace.

Stats That Speak Volumes: Let's kick things off with a compelling statistic - 44% of the Arete EAP users screened positive for probable clinical depression. These individuals initially presented with higher levels of unproductivity, absenteeism, presenteeism, and related employer costs compared to other Arete EAP users. However, here's the game-changer – for these users, the Arete EAP contributed to greater overall improvements and higher levels of productivity. This translated into reduced presenteeism and absenteeism, along with significant reductions in employer costs, compared to all other Arete EAP users.

Savings and Improvements: Let's put some numbers to these improvements. The savings for employers due to unproductive wages for depressed employees who accessed the Arete EAP was up to approximately $15,036 per year, representing $1,253 of employer savings per month. This staggering figure represented an overall 50% decrease in employer costs for this subgroup of users. These substantial savings underscore the immense value of investing in mental health support for our teams.

The Visual Impact: Visualizing these improvements can truly highlight the positive changes. Before accessing the EAP, users with depression reported spending a significant portion of their time at work in unproductive activities. However, post-EAP use, there was a notable shift, with more time dedicated to meaningful work tasks. Additionally, unplanned days absent from work decreased significantly, reflecting a greater commitment to attendance and productivity.

The Takeaway: The takeaway from these findings is crystal clear – the use of the Arete EAP was associated with significant improvements in employee productivity, reduced presenteeism, and unplanned absences, alongside meaningful reductions in employer costs. With savings ranging from $6,476 to $15,036 per employee per year, the impact of EAPs on small businesses in Ontario cannot be overstated. These programs not only enhance employee well-being but also contribute to a more resilient and prosperous workforce.

As small business owners, investing in the mental health of our teams isn't just a smart business move; it's a moral imperative. By providing access to EAPs like Arete's through the Chamber Plan, we can create a workplace culture where mental health matters, productivity thrives, and our teams feel supported and valued.

Let's continue to prioritize the well-being of our teams, knowing that when we invest in their mental health, we're also investing in the success and longevity of our businesses.


SOURCE: Arete is the EAP behind the Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan – the largest insurer of small business in Canada”

Chris Zelasko
Matthew Howell, CHS Employee Benefits Consultant Quinte Ontario

Peak Benefit Solutions

Phone: 613-962-4239


Matt is a Group, Life and Disability Consultant and holds the Certified Health Insurance Specialist (CHS) designation and looks to help small business owners protect themselves, their families and their employees' families from lifestyle-threatening risks.

Before merging with Peak Benefits Solutions, Matt founded Howell Financial Corp in 2018, after having  more than 20 years of experience as a small business owner. Prior to being in financial services, Matt spent 12 years growing 3 successful, local restaurant franchises.

Matt is no stranger to financial services, having spent 10 years as an advisor with Freedom 55 and Riley Financial Group where he cared for a client base of over 500 homes and 80 businesses.

A big believer in generosity, Matt supports the Trillium Gift of Life Network.

As a proud father Matt sits on the board of the Children's Safety Village.

As an engaged Financial Advisor, Matt is a director in the local chapter of Advocis, an association promoting advisor professionalism since 1906.

As a concerned small business owner Matt is an active member in 5 local Chambers of Commerce in and around the greater Quinte area.

Originally from the Bancroft area, Matt moved to Belleville in 1990 to attend Loyalist College and never left. Matt is the proud father of Donovan, future lawyer/NFL superstar, and Emily, future veterinarian/Mayor of Belleville.

Matt collects guitars and likes to fish the Bay of Quinte.

Peak Benefit Solutions Inc. was established in 2008 and have helped more than 400 clients from entrepreneurs, manufacturing, professional services and public organizations with their comprehensive benefits planning. Every step of the way, we are with you.



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