AT&T is a modern media company.
We unite premium content, direct customer relationships, advertising technology and highspeed networks to deliver unique experiences to consumers and businesses of all sizes. We have about 270,000 employees across the US in functions ranging from corporate roles, data scientists, retail operations, technicians and call center representatives. Our major US locations include Dallas, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Chicago and New York City.
When it comes to our employees’ mental health and well-being, AT&T’s goal is to provide robust and well-rounded services through traditional benefits and our Your Health Matters (YHM) program. For example, we work to remove barriers that get in the way of access to quality care. We meet our employees “where they are” through a variety of channels: mobile app, website, text or telephone. And to contribute to the overall well-being of our employees, we are currently evaluating resiliency and stress management solutions to possibly complement our existing mental health support programs.
Overall Approach to Mental Health:
AT&T offers a variety of benefits and resources to help address life issues such as personal and family concerns, financial and legal issues, depression and other mental illnesses. The benefits and resources available to employees are accessible online or via telephone, and include:
- Mental Health/Substance Use Disorder Benefits
- Employee Assistance Program
- Work Life Services
- Well-Being Services
One example of our company’s focus on mental health is our annual Stamp Out Stigma campaign. In 2018, the campaign was designed to educate employees to recognize and reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness and substance abuse. We encouraged them to take the pledge to Stamp Out Stigma, either online or in-person, and donated $1 to Mental Health America for every pledge collected. The campaign was promoted through storytelling on corporate communication channels and in-person by YHM champions in over 50 AT&T offices. By the campaign’s end, we had collected over 11,250 employee pledges.
Besides our annual Stamp Out Stigma campaign, we also encourage supervisors to talk about AT&T’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Our program administrator offers a specially trained team of EAP Consultants, called the Health and Performance Solutions (HPS) team, to assist supervisors with workplace issues or help employees develop strategies to resolve any issues they have. Supervisors may also contact HPS to request brochures or consultation on topics such as working with difficult people, coping with grief, excessive tardiness or absences, changes in personal hygiene, an inability to concentrate or other signs that raise concern.
AT&T’s EAP, Mental Health (MH)/Substance Use Disorder (SUD) benefits work with other services to prevent, diagnose and treat issues related to mental illness. Each has received a minimum 90% satisfaction rating by our employees. One of our main goals is to have more proactive depression screenings performed by our vendor partners and to continue working across the company to lessen the stigma around mental illness. These programs are designed to provide superior resources for employees’ mental health concerns and to address issues that may impact work performance.
Our vendor partners offer effective and cost-efficient services with ample provider networks, including the development of a preferred provider network that allows members rapid access to high-quality providers. The programs are universally available to our employees, and we continue using data to evaluate them and find ways to help to identify employees who may be at risk and in need of behavioral health support.
Historically, one of the common concerns of our employees was that our providers were sometimes no-longer in-network or not accepting new patients. To address that, we collaborated with our vendor partners and developed the preferred provider network. The data so far is showing us that more members have seen a preferred provider and are satisfied with the level of care they received. Eliminating this barrier alone helps employees get the help they need. That was key for us.
AT&T continues to focus on increasing participation in the EAP program, with a goal of resolving more cases before transitioning to behavioral health benefits. In cases that require additional MH/SUD care, we continue to emphasize the value of using an in-network preferred provider.
Current participation in the employee assistance program is around 8%. Campaigns like Stamp Out Stigma help employees understand that mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, we’ve had several employees offer their own video testimonials of the struggles they overcame, and how they utilized our resources to find the right level of care. These powerful personal stories are a very effective tool to engage other employees.
AT&T continues to explore how to better integrate and coordinate medical, behavioral health and well-being services. We believe it’s important to look at the holistic well-being of an employee and strive to make our services and benefits easily accessible to employees, regardless of where they are in their search. We’re also considering staffing our onsite health clinics with EAP counselors to proactively screen, counsel or refer members to in-network providers. And finally, we are working with digital solutions to help aid in assessing and triaging members. Our goal is to direct employees to the appropriate level of care, while using data to proactively reach out to those who may need mental health support.
Chairman and CEO