Did you know that 1 in 7 Americans will face an addiction at some point in their life?
If you also factor in the number of people who aren’t addicted but still use recreational drugs, this figure soars even higher. If you’re trying to run a business, alcohol and substance abuse can wreak havoc on your reputation, sales, and much more.
Do you want to know how you can maintain a drug-free workplace that’s safe for everyone? Keep reading to learn 8 helpful tips that will help you foster a positive work environment.
1. Create a Clear Drug and Alcohol Policy
Creating a formal drug and alcohol policy that’s easy to understand will ensure your employees know your company’s rules regarding drug and alcohol use. In this document, you can outline how your company will support employees who seek help for substance abuse and other important policies. Drug testing, rules in the workplace, and consequences are all helpful information to include.
Working closely with HR and even a lawyer can help your company write a fair, legal policy..
2. Know When to Administer Drug Tests
Out of all the drug test tips, the most important one to remember is that companies can’t collect random drug tests whenever they want. Each state has different laws and regulations that dictate when and how a company can request employees to submit a drug test. Consulting a lawyer is the best way to ensure you understand all of the laws so you don’t have to face a lawsuit for wrongful drug testing.
Most companies across the country request applicants to submit a drug test before they can be hired to ensure any potential employees with pre-existing, untreated substance abuse issues don’t cause problems by joining the workforce.
Two other occasions that warrant a drug test include reasonable suspicion and post-accident when one employee causes harm to company equipment or another employee. If your state does allow you to conduct randomized drug tests, doing so can help you maintain a drug-free environment.
3. Be Prepared to Discipline Employees Who Don’t Pass
If an employee ever fails a drug test or is caught with undeniable proof that they’re abusing drugs or alcohol, you need to be prepared to handle the situation. Companies that don’t follow through with the disciplinary actions outlined in their drug and alcohol policy run the risk of encouraging other employees to abuse drugs or alcohol. Remaining firm reinforces that your company is serious and that everyone can expect to be disciplined if they create an unsafe work environment.
Lots of companies have a zero-tolerance drug and alcohol policy that leads to immediate termination, but you don’t have to adopt the same methods. Other companies allow employees to continue working with the company as long as they take action to rectify the problem and stay sober.
4. Plan Educational Meetings
Even though addiction and substance abuse is common in our society, there’s still a lot that people don’t know about the subject. For example, some people aren’t aware that prescription medications can be addictive if you don’t follow the proper dosage instructions.
Management and HR can work together as a team to plan educational meetings that inform employees about the risks of abusing drugs and alcohol. Another helpful option you can consider is calling a local resource and have a representative join your meeting to discuss important facts and share how they can provide help to those who need it.
5. Remind Your Employees to Take Advantage of Employee Assistance Programs and Other Resources
EAPs were created to give people a safe place to get therapy and other treatments to help them thrive in the workplace. Since this resource is confidential, your employees won’t have to worry about facing repercussions for trying to get help. Compiling a list of other local resources that can help with alcohol and substance abuse will make it easier for any employees who need treatment.
6. Train Supervisors to Understand the Warning Signs of Alcohol and Substance Abuse
Drugs and alcohol can affect the body in all kinds of ways that may seem subtle at first glance. Since you may not be around to keep a close eye on all of your employees, you should make sure that other supervisors are educated on the warning signs of common substances that are abused.
Creating a policy for reporting suspected drug use and handling these cases can eliminate the risk of mistreating an employee who might be abusing drugs or alcohol.
7. Consider Your Company’s Culture
One gray area that many companies struggle with is figuring out how to throw fun company events. Many events that are held outside of work hours typically serve alcohol. Before you throw an event, you’ll have to take some time to consider what type of company culture you’d like to have.
If you decide to serve alcohol, you can also issue a limit and remind your employees to drink responsibly. Giving fun rewards to people who volunteer to be designated drivers can encourage more people to abstain from drinking.
8. Focus on Building a Supportive Work Environment
One of the top reasons why people seek out drugs and alcohol is feeling unhappy. Since working in any field can come with stress, it’s important to do your best to create a healthy work environment that can balance out negative emotions. Having a break room full of group games, scheduling fun group activities, and encouraging everyone to connect with their coworkers can help everyone feel more valued.
These Tips Will Help You Maintain a Drug-Free Workplace
If you follow these 8 tips, then you can create a drug-free workplace that helps everyone feel safe and productive.
Are you ready to tackle substance abuse in the workplace? If so, Rapid Detect has a wide range of drug and alcohol tests that are both affordable and comprehensive. Check out our drug test kits to find the right solution for your business.