Why Is Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Workplace Necessary?

We’ve all been there before. You’re interviewing for a new job. The hirer likes your resume and the interview has gone well. However, in the end, the hirer tells you that while they’d love to bring you on board, you have to pass a drug test first. Pre-employment drug and alcohol testing has become incredibly common today, but that’s just one aspect of how widespread it’s become in modern society. Why is it so necessary for today’s workplace?

The Problems with Drug and Alcohol Use on the Job

Once upon a time, it wasn’t unusual for American workers to imbibe on the job. The TV show Mad Men gets that aspect right – it was once commonplace for beer and hard liquor to be present on the job. Today, that’s not the case because we better understand the impact of inebriation and drug use on the workplace as a whole. Drug and alcohol use can:

  • Decrease your ability to concentrate
  • Decrease your ability to perform work duties correctly
  • Increase the chances of an accident on the job
  • Increase the chance of injury stemming from an accident
  • Increase the chance that you will harm someone else in an accident
  • Increase the chance that you’ll suffer from serious health problems in the future
  • These are only a few of the reasons that drug and alcohol testing in the workplace is necessary. It’s even more important in safety-sensitive
  • industries. DOT companies have very stringent rules in place regarding both the use of and testing for drugs and alcohol.

How Is Drug Testing Done?

Most drug and alcohol testing today is done via a urine test. You provide a urine sample to a collection professional who then labels the sample, documents everything, and then delivers the sample to a laboratory. There, the sample is analyzed for specific drugs. DOT company employees are only screened for a few drugs, but non-DOT employees can be screened for an enormous range, and DNA testing can also be done with those samples.

Failing a Drug Test

The specific ramifications that apply to you from failing a drug test will depend on a couple of factors. The most important is the company’s policy regarding drug and alcohol use on the job. The reason for the test will also play a role. If it is only a random drug test, chances are good that the repercussions will be less harsh than if it was due to you being involved in an accident.

A Trusted Education Provider & Training Partner

Not all training companies are created equal. Our drug and alcohol training courses have been recognized and approved by certification and credentialing boards around the world to provide meaningful continuing education to their members. We are constantly being recognized by more organizations for more courses; to find out if your board has already approved one or more of our courses, please visit our approved provider list. If your organization isn’t listed there yet, you can send us an email with your name, organization, and the courses you are interested in taking and we’ll get our team working on becoming an approved provider right away.

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