2022 Edition

Employee Assistance Program Services (CA-EAP) 8: Assessment and Action Planning

Each client participates in the development of an assessment-based action plan that is the basis for delivery of appropriate services and support.


Viewing: CA-EAP 8 - Assessment and Action Planning



Employee Assistance Programs help organizations achieve business health and productivity goals, and support individuals working to maintain or improve their productivity, functioning, and pro-social behaviour, as well as remain at or return to the workplace.
All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, as indicated by full implementation of the practices outlined in the Practice Standards.
Practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards; e.g.,
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality; or
  • Procedures need strengthening; or
  • With few exceptions, procedures are understood by staff and are being used; or
  • In a few rare instances, urgent needs were not prioritized; or
  • For the most part, established timeframes are met; or
  • Culturally responsive assessments are the norm and any issues with individual staff members are being addressed through performance evaluations and training; or
  • Active client participation occurs to a considerable extent.
Practice requires significant improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards. Service quality or program functioning may be compromised; e.g.,
  • Procedures and/or case record documentation need significant strengthening; or
  • Procedures are not well-understood or used appropriately; or
  • Urgent needs are often not prioritized; or 
  • Services are frequently not initiated in a timely manner; or
  • Applicants are not receiving referrals, as appropriate; or 
  • Assessment and reassessment timeframes are often missed; or
  • Assessment are sometimes not sufficiently individualized; 
  • Culturally responsive assessments are not the norm, and this is not being addressed in supervision or training; or
  • Several client records are missing important information; or
  • Client participation is inconsistent; or
  • Intake or assessment is done by another organization or referral source and no documentation and/or summary of required information is present in case record. 
Implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards; e.g.,
  • There are no written procedures, or procedures are clearly inadequate or not being used; or
  • Documentation is routinely incomplete and/or missing.  
Self-Study EvidenceOn-Site EvidenceOn-Site Activities
  • Assessment procedures
  • Copy of assessment tool(s)
  • Action planning procedures
No On-Site Evidence
  • Interviews may include:
    1. Program director
    2. Relevant personnel
    3. Clients
  • Review client records


CA-EAP 8.01

EAP counsellors/consultants obtain relevant assessment information including, as appropriate to the service provided:
  1. demographic information;
  2. the nature of the request or presenting problem;
  3. any workplace related issues;
  4. any immediate safety risks to self or others;
  5. environment and home situation;
  6. financial status and health insurance;
  7. social and peer group support;
  8. interests, skills, and aptitudes;
  9. work history and military service;
  10. medical history;
  11. physical illness/somatic variables/medical treatment;
  12. the use of alcohol or other drugs;
  13. depression screening;
  14. ongoing safety concerns;
  15. behavioural/cognitive patterns that cause health risks, based on physical, emotional, behavioural, or social conditions; and
  16. legal, vocational, and/or wellness needs of the client.
Examples: Workplace related issues can include, for example, co-worker conflicts, conflicts with managers, drug policy violations, manager consultations, performance improvement issues, and critical incidents.


CA-EAP 8.02

At the initial counselling session, the counsellor and the client:
  1. assess the underlying problem;
  2. discuss available options;
  3. address how the EAP can support the achievement of desired outcomes; and
  4. determine whether to retain the case for short-term counselling or to refer to an outside provider for ongoing treatment.
NA The EAP does not provide clinical services.


CA-EAP 8.03

An assessment-based action plan is developed in a timely manner with the full participation of the client and includes agreed upon goals, desired outcomes, and timeframes for achieving them.


Some clients that receive only short-term services may not implement a full planning process whereas others with more severe clinical issues, such as high-risk cases with depression or an addiction, likely will need a plan for continued support and monitoring of treatment delivery and improvement/relapse over time. Depending on the severity of the clinical issue and the corresponding action plan, expectations for short- and long-term follow-up between the client and EAP staff may be required.


Action planning is often done within the first or second session, after the initial assessment is completed, safety risks are resolved, and potential resources for support and treatment have been identified to meet the personal and financial needs of the client.


CA-EAP 8.04

The EAP establishes a system for review of cases and case consultation.