Different types of drug testing performed at a workplace

Drug abuse has become a serious health problem for employers in most countries. With more than 68 per cent of current illicit drug abusers being employed, every employer must identify and eliminate all the drug-abusing job applicants and employees to create a safe and drug-free work environment. Drug laboratory testing is one of the most effective methods employers use to detect employee drug abuse.

The introduction of employee drug testing has significantly reduced the impact of drug abuse in the workplace, which include tardiness, absenteeism, turnover, decreased productivity, attitude problem, crime and violence. Besides identifying drug abusers, laboratory drug testing also deters employees from engaging in drug abuse. Furthermore, a drug-free environment in the workplace promotes positive attributes like professionalism, integrity, discipline, work culture and employee productivity. For this reason, employee drug testing has become a crucial part of every organisation.

There are various types of employee drug testing done by organisations. Some of them are as follows:

Pre-employment drug testing

For sustained growth and productivity of the organisation, the right personnel must be taken on board. Pre-employment drug testing helps organisations hire only productive and efficient employees. Conducting this test early in the hiring process allows employers to find if the people they intend to hire have no addiction problem and assures safety at the workplace and of other employees. Moreover, since only efficient employees join the organisation, employers can be assured that the employees follow all Federal work-safety guidelines.

Random drug testing

People who work under the influence of drugs have a higher risk of causing security lapses, injuries, damages or accidents. Performing random testing helps prevent such incidents. Random drug testing is another effective tool for preventing drug abuse among employees. In random drug testing, laboratory tests are conducted randomly over the employees without giving any prior information. These tests can be easily performed using onsite urine and saliva test kits.

Reasonable suspicion drug testing

Organisations conduct drug testing on employees they firmly believe are abusing drugs. This test is performed after the organisation observes patterns of drug use, symptoms of working under the influence or on arrest or getting convicted for drug abuse. A suspicion drug test can be done to confirm the doubt of the organisation about drug abuse by the employee. You can perform this test based on evidence like reports from reliable sources, abnormal conduct, evidence of tampering with their drug results and direct observation of drug use.

Post-accident drug testing

The organisation performs post-accident drug testing after the employee meets with a severe accident or injury. This is performed to determine whether the accident or damage occurred due to alcohol or drug use. Post-accident drug testing protects the company from liability if the employee is working under the influence. Though with this test, you can’t prevent incidents from happening, you can save yourself from legal procedures and liabilities if the test proves that the injured employee had taken drugs during the work.

Return to duty drug testing

After the employee returns to duty after reporting positive for drug abuse, organisations perform return-to-duty drug testing. This test confirms that the employee is no longer a drug addict. With this testing, the organisation gives a second chance to the employee after they have attended a rehabilitation program.

Follow-up drug testing

Follow-up druglaboratory testing can be performed anytime after the employee returns to duty after attending the rehabilitation program. This is a crucial test organisation should get done to determine if the employee has again started consuming drugs. The employees will have to undergo this test compulsorily. The presence of even a small concentration of drugs can lead to disciplinary action or possible termination from employment.

These six types of drug testing are commonly performed in an organisation to maintain a safer, drug-free workplace. The need for drug testing is increasing with drug abusers increasing every day.