Employee Assistance Program Counselor Job Description [Updated for 2024]

employee assistance program counselor job description

In the complex world of workforce management, the role of an Employee Assistance Program Counselor is becoming increasingly significant.

As organizations strive to foster a healthier and more productive workforce, the demand for skilled professionals who can guide, support, and safeguard employees’ mental health is on the rise.

But what’s the real deal about being an Employee Assistance Program Counselor?

Whether you are:

  • A job seeker exploring the depths of this role,
  • A hiring manager outlining the perfect candidate,
  • Or simply interested in the dynamics of employee assistance programs,

You’ve landed on the right page.

Today, we introduce a versatile Employee Assistance Program Counselor job description template, tailored for effortless posting on job boards or career websites.

Let’s dive in right away.

Employee Assistance Program Counselor Duties and Responsibilities

Employee Assistance Program Counselors provide mental health support and guidance to employees.

Their aim is to help employees cope with personal problems that might adversely impact their work performance, health, and wellbeing.

They have the following duties and responsibilities:

  • Provide individual counseling to employees dealing with issues like stress, substance abuse, family problems and mental health disorders
  • Develop and implement employee assistance programs in alignment with the organization’s objectives
  • Conduct assessments to identify employees’ issues and determine their need for services
  • Provide crisis intervention in emergency situations
  • Design, facilitate and implement workshops, training sessions, and seminars for employees and management on various wellbeing topics
  • Conduct regular follow-ups with employees to check the effectiveness of counseling and programs
  • Collaborate with management and human resources to address workplace issues
  • Refer employees to outside resources or specialists when necessary
  • Maintain confidentiality and adhere to ethical standards while handling sensitive employee information
  • Track and report on EAP utilization and outcomes


Employee Assistance Program Counselor Job Description Template

Job Brief

We are looking for a compassionate Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Counselor to provide support and guidance to employees dealing with personal issues that might affect their work performance, health, and well-being.

The EAP Counselor will offer confidential assessments, short-term counseling, referrals, and follow-up services.

Our ideal candidate has a solid background in social work or counseling, excellent communication skills, and a genuine desire to help others.



  • Provide immediate emotional support and crisis intervention to employees
  • Assess employees’ needs and develop appropriate intervention strategies
  • Offer short-term counseling and refer employees to appropriate external resources when necessary
  • Follow up to ensure the effectiveness of interventions
  • Develop and deliver educational programs and workshops on various health and wellness topics
  • Maintain strict confidentiality of all client information, in accordance with legal and ethical standards
  • Collaborate with HR and management to address workplace issues
  • Stay up-to-date with advancements in the field of employee assistance



  • Proven experience as an EAP Counselor, Therapist, or similar role
  • Knowledge of counseling techniques and interventions, especially for crisis situations
  • Strong understanding of legal and ethical issues related to counseling
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • Ability to handle sensitive issues with discretion and confidentiality
  • Master’s degree in Social Work, Counseling, Psychology, or a related field
  • Professional licensure (e.g., LCSW, LMHC, LMFT, etc.)



  • 401(k)
  • Health insurance
  • Dental insurance
  • Retirement plan
  • Paid time off
  • Professional development opportunities


Additional Information

  • Job Title: Employee Assistance Program Counselor
  • Work Environment: Office setting with possible travel to other company locations for workshops and interventions.
  • Reporting Structure: Reports to the Employee Assistance Program Manager.
  • Salary: Salary is based upon candidate experience and qualifications, as well as market and business considerations.
  • Pay Range: $45,000 minimum to $75,000 maximum
  • Location: [City, State] (specify the location or indicate if remote)
  • Employment Type: Full-time
  • Equal Opportunity Statement: We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.
  • Application Instructions: Please submit your resume and a cover letter outlining your qualifications and experience to [email address or application portal].


What Does an Employee Assistance Program Counselor Do?

Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Counselors work in a variety of settings such as corporations, universities, or government agencies.

They can also work as independent consultants.

Their primary role is to provide support to employees dealing with personal problems that might adversely impact their work performance, health, and well-being.

These counselors conduct assessments to identify the issues faced by an employee and develop a treatment plan.

They provide short-term counseling on issues like stress, substance abuse, family problems and psychological disorders.

In case of complex issues requiring long-term therapy, EAP counselors refer employees to specialized professionals or agencies.

They also provide crisis intervention services in case of immediate threats or dangers.

EAP counselors often conduct workshops and training programs on topics like stress management, drug abuse prevention, and maintaining work-life balance.

They work closely with human resources and management to identify and address workplace issues that can affect employee well-being.

Their job requires maintaining confidentiality and trust while ensuring the well-being of employees and productivity of the organization.


Employee Assistance Program Counselor Qualifications and Skills

An Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Counselor should possess the necessary qualifications and skills that match the job role, which include:

  • Counseling skills to provide short-term counseling, crisis intervention, and referrals to employees with personal and work-related problems.
  • Knowledge of various therapeutic techniques and interventions to effectively deal with a wide range of issues including stress, anxiety, depression, substance abuse, and grief.
  • Excellent communication skills to listen and empathize with employees’ problems, offer advice, and discuss possible solutions.
  • Interpersonal skills to build trust and rapport with employees, allowing them to open up about their problems.
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality and respect clients’ privacy, ensuring that employees feel safe and comfortable discussing personal issues.
  • Understanding of workplace issues and dynamics to provide appropriate advice and support to employees facing challenges at work.
  • Problem-solving skills to help employees find solutions to their personal and work-related issues.
  • Strong knowledge of community resources to provide appropriate referrals for long-term treatment and support.
  • Comfort in working with a diverse population and understanding of various cultural, social, and economic backgrounds.
  • Ability to handle high-stress situations and crises with calmness and professionalism.


Employee Assistance Program Counselor Experience Requirements

Entry-level Employee Assistance Program Counselors usually have 1 to 2 years of experience, often obtained through internships or part-time roles in counseling or related fields such as human resources, social work, psychology, or mental health services.

These professionals may gain on-the-job experience in roles such as Case Manager, Mental Health Counselor, Social Worker, or other roles that involve human services.

Candidates with more than 3 years of experience may have developed their counseling skills and knowledge in entry-level roles or through advanced education.

They are likely to have experience working directly with clients, performing assessments, and developing and implementing treatment plans.

Those with more than 5 years of experience are typically well-versed in a variety of counseling techniques and therapeutic interventions.

They may have supervised others or led team projects, and are often prepared for leadership roles in the field.

Additional qualifications may include certifications or licenses in counseling or a related field, as well as a comprehensive understanding of the issues often faced by employees, such as stress, mental health issues, substance abuse, and work-life balance challenges.


Employee Assistance Program Counselor Education and Training Requirements

Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Counselors typically require a bachelor’s degree in social work, psychology, or a related field, however, many employers prefer candidates with a master’s degree in these fields.

To be effective in their role, EAP Counselors need to have a robust understanding of mental health conditions, substance abuse issues, stress management strategies, and other personal issues that employees might face.

All states require counselors to be licensed, which generally involves obtaining a master’s degree, completing a certain number of supervised hours of clinical experience, and passing a state-recognized exam.

EAP Counselors may also seek certification from various professional organizations such as the Employee Assistance Professionals Association (EAPA) or the International Employee Assistance Professionals Association (IEAPA).

These certifications demonstrate a counselor’s commitment to the field and can make them more appealing to employers.

Continuous learning and development are important in this field as EAP Counselors are expected to be knowledgeable about the latest research and treatment methods.

As such, many counselors participate in regular professional development and continuing education programs.


Employee Assistance Program Counselor Salary Expectations

An Employee Assistance Program Counselor can expect to earn an average salary of $46,891 (USD) per year.

However, this salary can vary depending on factors such as years of experience, level of education, and location.


Employee Assistance Program Counselor Job Description FAQs

What skills does an Employee Assistance Program Counselor need?

An Employee Assistance Program Counselor should have excellent interpersonal skills for dealing with a variety of people under stress.

They should also have good listening and problem-solving skills.

Knowledge of mental and emotional disorders, along with substance abuse issues, is vital.

A good counselor will also have organizational skills and be capable of maintaining client confidentiality at all times.


Do Employee Assistance Program Counselors need a degree?

Yes, most Employee Assistance Program Counselors have a bachelor’s degree in psychology, social work, or a related field.

Many also have a master’s degree.

They also need to be licensed to practice in their state, which may require additional courses and a certain number of supervised clinical hours.


What should you look for in an Employee Assistance Program Counselor resume?

You should look for a strong educational background in counseling or related fields, as well as licensure in the state where they will be practicing.

Experience working in a counseling setting, particularly with a focus on issues commonly addressed in employee assistance programs such as stress, substance abuse, or family problems, is also important.

You should also look for evidence of good communication and interpersonal skills.


What qualities make a good Employee Assistance Program Counselor?

A good Employee Assistance Program Counselor is empathetic and understanding, able to connect with people from a variety of backgrounds.

They have strong communication skills and are able to convey complex information about mental health and treatment plans in a way that is easy for clients to understand.

Good counselors are also organized and able to manage their time and resources effectively.


What are the daily duties of an Employee Assistance Program Counselor?

On a typical day, an Employee Assistance Program Counselor may provide individual or group counseling sessions, conduct assessments to identify client needs, develop treatment plans, and refer clients to community resources.

They may also provide crisis intervention services.

In addition, they may be required to maintain records and document progress, as well as stay updated on the latest research and developments in the field.



And there you have it.

Today, we’ve unveiled the essence of being an Employee Assistance Program Counselor.

Guess what?

It’s not just about providing guidance.

It’s about shaping the future of workplace wellness, one counseling session at a time.

Our reliable Employee Assistance Program Counselor job description template, coupled with real-world examples, has got you covered.

But why stop there?

Venture further with our job description generator. It’s your next step to precision-crafted job listings or honing your resume to excellence.


Every counseling session is a step towards a healthier workplace.

Let’s shape that future. Together.

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