Home > Background Screening, Drug Abuse, Drug Testing, Drug-Free Workplace, Hair Drug Test, Hair Drug Testing, Pre-Employment > Are You Committing These Workplace Drug Testing Errors? (Part 1)

Are You Committing These Workplace Drug Testing Errors? (Part 1)

If your company has a drug testing policy, you should be commended — but only if you’re also sure that your policy follows drug testing best practices. If not, you might be unknowingly employing workers who are using drugs or abusing alcohol, which can affect workplace costs and safety.

We’re sharing some drug testing errors to avoid when designing or implementing your workplace drug testing program.

Avoid These Drug Testing Mistakes

Only Using Urine Drug TestingWorcester Businesses - Are You Making These Drug Testing Mistakes?

Another drug testing mistake many employers make? Only using urine drug testing. By far, urine testing is the most popular form of drug test, with 95% of employers who conduct drug testing using it. This is compared to just 9% of employers who use saliva and 8% of employers who use hair testing.

While urine drug testing is a reliable method, it does have certain limitations. First, its detection window of 72 hours is brief, meaning that it won’t detect chronic drug use and those being tested can abstain for a few days in order to pass the test. Also, there are many more “drug cheat” products that employees may attempt to use with urine testing. (Although these cheats don’t actually work, when an employee attempts to cheat a drug test, they often adulterate the sample, which requires a repeat collection — thus increasing your costs). In addition, gathering the specimen for a urine drug test can take longer than other means of collection, and the test is best done at an off-site facility.

Rather than relying on urine drug testing for all your testing needs, we recommend adding in hair testing and saliva testing. Both these methods are easier to conduct on-site, meaning no one will have to travel to a separate lab — saving time and money. Furthermore, these tests really don’t have any cheats that can compromise the sample. Hair drug testing also has the longest window of detection — 3 months — which enables employers to learn of chronic substance abuse.

Only Testing Potential Employees

Surveys on workplace drug testing programs have found that the majority of businesses who conduct drug testing do so during the pre-employment process; in fact, 89% of drug tests are conducted before the first day of work. Not nearly enough continue and follow through to conduct random drug tests once workers are hired, though.

While pre-employment screening is certainly important, the truth is that if your business doesn’t follow up with random testing, your workers will learn that they can get away with substance use — and they’ll spread the word. Once employees know that they can pass your pre-employment screening by abstaining from use for a period, then take up using again once hired, they will act accordingly. You never know when an employee’s substance abuse problems will emerge, so it doesn’t make sense to only conduct drug testing once.

Only Testing Full-Time Employees

Furthermore, most drug testing is conducted on potential full-time employees, not on part-time, contract, seasonal, or temporary workers, volunteers, or vendors.

Testing only your full-time employees leaves out a large population of employees who could use drugs or alcohol. Since these positions are fleeting, some workers who fill them aren’t concerned about their long-term place in the business, so they might risk substance use if they aren’t worried about repercussions. And if you don’t enforce random drug testing, substance abuse by temporary employees can have a lasting impact.

Your Worcester Drug Testing Partner

ARCpoint Labs of Worcester can serve as your workplace drug testing partner, ensuring you don’t commit any of these workplace testing errors. We will help you assess your needs and create a workplace drug policy that’s effective, then provide professional drug testing services.

To learn more about our drug testing services in Worcester, call (774) 314-9551 today!

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  1. October 21, 2014 at 6:50 pm

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