Communication is key. The most effective supervisor referrals include good communication between the EAP and the supervisor prior to the referral of the employee. This includes a written list of performance issues. If you do not communicate well with the EAP prior to making a supervisor referral, you open the door to miscommunication.
Problems galore. A lack of communication may prevent you from discovering whether your employee was ever seen by the EAP. And if your employee was seen, the EA professional may never know you were involved in the referral. You cannot rely on an employee sharing with the EAP the circumstances of their referral or the precise nature of the performance problems that led to it. Likewise, the effectiveness of a referral is diminished if you provide job performance information to the EAP only after the employee has been seen.
Beyond verbal communication. It is valuable and desirable to speak with the EAP prior to a supervisor referral, however, no matter how good a verbal list of performance problems you share, an employee can easily debate them with nothing in writing to make them concrete. The EAP assessment is then made more difficult.