While employers may not like to admit it, there’s a good chance of habitual drug use finding its way into their workforce.

It’s essential for employers to acknowledge this very real possibility, be aware of the signs and have policies in place to address employee drug use.

When employees have problems with addiction, it can impact the organization in many ways, including lost productivity and substantial liability, if working under the influence causes damage to property, personal injury or even death.

Every business ought to have an official substance abuse policy that forbids using illicit drugs or alcohol during working hours and gives the company options if the worker’s performance is being impacted by drug or alcohol abuse. Workers should be required to review the policy and sign a document agreeing to it upon being hired.

The Case for Regular Drug Testing

Regular drug testing of random employees can act as a massive deterrent to drug use, especially for occasional users. Those without addiction issues are much less likely to partake in occasional drug use if they are concerned that doing so may cost them their job.

For those that unfortunately have substance addiction issues, random drug testing can identify these individuals and put them on a path to treatment.

Most employers use hair testing for drugs as it can identify use within the past 90 days. The NIDA (National Institute of Drug Abuse) 5-drug test is a standard assessment that can identify the presence of five types of drugs: THC, cocaine, heroin, amphetamines, and PCP.

What to Do When an Employee Tests Positive

When establishing a substance abuse plan, it is important to talk with an attorney. You have to be sure your policy aligns with all employment laws and that potential firing decisions are in keeping with those laws. Furthermore, you need to discuss liability issues with legal counsel to safeguard the company from legal action.

Whatever your policy says, it’s to take action without hesitation. The worst thing you can do is overlook substance abuse. If you have a worker who tests positive, you have to tackle the issue directly with a private conversation that involves reviewing the company’s policy, expressing concern and offering to provide assistance.

Most areas have substance abuse counseling and prevention organizations and programs. Take a look at Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, and other organizations to figure out if they have any training materials or suggested resources for individuals coping with substance abuse issues. Having a set of support groups, medical care facilities, and other resources allows you to give your workers a place to begin to take care of her or his issue. Make this list accessible to everybody in your organization.

We Can Help Your Company Address This Complicated Issue

At Cornerstone, we have years of experience in addressing issues around employee substance abuse. If you’re looking for a talent acquisition partner that can expertly handle delicate HR issues, please contact us today.

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