The drug-testing program at the workplace has become an important part of retaining a safe work environment. According to a research study, nearly 78% of companies conduct drug testing regularly.
They find drug screening necessary to ensure a healthy workplace and a productive team. Conducting pre-employment drug testing has also become mandatory in many companies.
These measures are important if you want to avoid the associated problems. Having drug testing regularly and in a compliant manner can boost your company’s performance. Not just this, but you can also have a positive and motivated organizational culture that is drug-free.
However, when planning a drug-testing program at the workplace, you have to remain careful while strategizing. To yield the best results out of the initiative, here are some of the practices you should be aware of.
1. Have a Policy in Place
The first thing you need to do is to have a drug screening policy for your organization. You should include it in your company’s guiding principle that a standard drug-testing program in the workplace is mandatory for all the employees.
This will make it official and will be in the knowledge of the employees. They will acknowledge that drug screening as a part of the recruitment and working requirement.
Moreover, you need to make sure that your policy satisfies the US Department of Labor requirements. The Department obligates the companies to have a standard set of questions. This includes terms, objectives, timing, and procedures while working on the drug screening policy.
The Society for Human Resource Management offers a sample for workplace drug and alcohol policy. You can consult this sample to draft your own policy. You can also refer to policy samples offered by different states and then build your own as per need.
2. Make Random Drug Testing Program a Norm
Having random drug testing occasionally can help you make your organization drug-free. Aside from the standard testing, random drug screening is a good practice to implement. You can notify the employees for an hour or so before the test.
You can go for urine drug test cup kits or panel oral swab drug tests to conduct effective random testing. These testing kits give you accurate results for the drugs taken in the past 1 to 3 days.
Urine drug test kits can show you results for drug consumption in the past 72 hours. If you go for instant tests such as mouth swab drug test, it detects drugs consumed in the last 24 hours. These drug testing kits are most suitable to conduct a drug-testing program in the workplace.
If you go for other options like laboratory tests, it will take more time to produce results. Also, laboratory tests are more expensive. If you want to screen a large team, drug testing kits are most suitable.
Moreover, drug tests like ones using a hair sample are not as accurate. They cannot detect the most recent drug intake. Going with these tests can actually give your inaccurate result and lead towards ill-informed decision-making.
3. Pre-employment Drug Testing is Important
You can preserve the environment of the workplace immensely by conducting pre-employment drug testing. This will filter out the applicants with a habit of drug abuse. Having this practice can give you numerous benefits.
As per research, substance-abusing workers are twice more likely than non-substance abusers to switch their jobs. If you screen them out beforehand, it will bring down your turnover rate. Also, it will save you money.
Secondly, hiring employees with a clean and drug-free status ensures a safe and productive environment at work. This will help you achieve your organizational goals more efficiently with healthy growth.
When you conduct pre-employment drug testing, it helps you avoid potential issues. This includes drug-related incidents at work.
It’s quite a surprising fact that 50% of at-the-work incidents are because of drug abuse. You can meet simple drug abuse testing program requirements and conduct the screening. This is a cost-efficient option that will benefit you in the longer run.
You can use a 5 to 10-panel drug tests that can do adequate drug and alcohol abuse detection. The benefit of using panel drug test kits is that they can give you results for a range of illicit substances. Going for individual drugs won’t give you efficient results. Also, it will turn more expensive if you conduct a separate test for each prospective drug.
Including the pre-employment drug-testing program in the workplace recruitment policy is a long-term investment. You will reap the benefits in the form of a safe environment and a productive team.
4. Be Vigilant of Forged Results
One way to screen your employees is to have them submit their drug test reports. While this can be more convenient for you, it gives the employees a huge room to tamper the results. They can easily trick employers and change the results.
Therefore, it is best for you to vigilantly conduct the drug tests and minimize the risks of forging the outcome.
You can do this by using the most appropriate drug test kits. There is an adulteration test panel in some drug test kits that offer protection against faking the results. This adulteration allows you to conduct tests safely and accurately.
Besides, you can also ask for a second specimen to ensure the exact results. You can add in the drug abuse testing program requirements not to take any fluids for 2 to 4 hours before the test. This action can help curtail the result of faking possibility.
Going for a split specimen option can give you more options to test the same sample in multiple laboratories. You can also go with different drug testing kits at the same time. This will give you accurate reports.
5. Training Your Employees
Among the drug-testing program practices in the workplace, what’s important to consider is staff counseling. This is one of the requirements from the US Department of Labor, too. To maintain a healthy and drug-free environment at work, you need to train your employees.
It would be best if you built awareness about drug testing and why it is important. The more informed your employees are, the more they will cooperate and help you achieve the objective.
You can arrange awareness sessions for the drug-testing program in the workplace. Brief the attendees about the importance of the testing and how it will benefit them. It is also important for you to clarify drug abuse testing program requirements for the employees.
This will give them a clear idea about the company drug testing policy and why it’s necessary. If you educate them properly about the consequences, it will keep them vigilant at their end.
While it is necessary to educate the employees, the people conducting the tests shouldn’t be overlooked. They need to have proper training. They should know how a mouth swab drug test or panel oral swab drug test works.
The procedure of conducting drug testing programs and reading the results right is of huge importance. Your entire drug-testing program will fall apart if you lack this particular area. So, make sure they have all the relevant details and know-how to execute the procedure.
6. Buy the Drug Test Kits from Authentic Dealers
This is one of the most important things you should take into consideration. Drug testing equipment has a huge role in determining the results. Purchasing low-quality drug testing kits or having supplies from unauthentic dealers can lead to inaccurate results.
Buy the testing kits from a supplier who knows the drug abuse testing program requirements. They must also be aware of pertinent jurisdiction. This will give you authentic results and help conduct the screening in a law-compliant manner.
Substance Abuse In the Workplace: What Law Says?
The federal laws in the country offer detailed guidelines on drug abuse policies for employers. You have the legal right to prohibit the use of drugs and alcohol in your workplace. Firing an employee for indulging in illegal drug use is justified.
There are state laws too that allow you to conduct pre-employment drug testing at the workplace. The Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 have the following provisions for drug-related issues:
- Employers have the right to prohibit the illegal use of the drug at the workplace
- Employee drug testing program doesn’t violate the ADA
- During pre-employment drug testing, employers can only test the candidates who are already offered jobs
- All candidates in the pre-employment drug testing should be treated fairly and equally
- For presently employed workers, employers should verify the cause of drug testing
- An employee can be fired for illegal drug use
- Employers cannot discriminate or stigmatize employees with a drug history
- An alcoholic can be referred to as an individual with a disability under the ADA
The federal laws give the employers leverage to conduct an employee drug testing program. However, it is important to conduct these programs without any discrimination. Make sure to meet the necessary drug testing program requirements. To get the best and most authentic supplies for drug testing at the workplace, you can contact Ovus Medical.
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