Many employers are understandably hesitant to institute random employee drug screenings even though most have the right to do so. The reasons behind the hesitation are simple: Random drug screening costs money, and it’s a hassle that both employees and most employers would prefer to get by without. Nevertheless, more and more businesses—especially large corporations—are requiring their employees to submit to random drug screening protocols, even including contractors in many cases. Why?
According to the United States Department of Justice, drug abuse costs U.S. business owners more than $140 billion dollars every year, including turnover from employees who abuse drugs. Even more worrisome is potential liability issues surrounding accidents or deaths involving employees under the influence, to say nothing of the trauma such incidents can cause workers and customers. While random drug screening can feel like a nuisance, it’s a small price to pay to avoid much costlier alternatives.
Work-related accidents and death are not the only risks that drug screening. When employers screen employees for drug use, several serious risks are mitigated, including:
• Employee turnover
• Poor productivity
• Increased benefits costs
Employee drug abuse causes about half of all on-the-job accidents, as well as 40 percent of employee theft. Further, employees who abuse drugs are absent ten times as often as non-users and the turnover rate for employees who abuse drugs is 30 percent higher than for non-users.
The Importance of Randomization
Random drug screenings are more effective than regular screenings because regular testing is too easy for drug abusers to anticipate and subvert. The best way to ensure the integrity of the drug test is not to allow employees advanced notice. There should be as little time as possible between informing the employee of the drug test and administering it. KRESS works with employers across the Houston area to make this process as simple and painless as possible.
Employers who opt to perform random drug testing need to ensure that employees are truly being chosen at random. If they’re not, an employee could claim that the company was discriminatory and singled them out for the drug test. Everyone at the place of business should be informed of random drug testing in writing.
Does your business need assistance implementing a new random drug screening protocol? Contact KRESS today. Our employment screening experts can walk through every step of the process, allowing your organization to reduce liability and maintain any necessary compliances. Call us today at 888-636-3693.