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Should Your Business have a Workplace Substance Use Policy?

workplace policy

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 12.5 million people misused prescription opioid and over 800,000 people used heroin, resulting in $78.5 billion in economic costs. Those costs have taken a toll on businesses and the healthcare system.

In addition, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) had identified that employees who use drugs are 2.5 times more likely to miss work for 8 or more days each year than co-workers who do not use drugs, and more than 3.5 times more likely have a workplace accident.

Implementing Workplace Substance Use Policy

Creating a workplace substance use policy, including drug testing, can benefit employers and employees. An employer wants to promote the well-being of its employees, as well as reducing precarious behaviors, such as drug use, that can negatively impact the workplace and, the employee’s performance, other employees’ performances and possibly customer experience. In addition to reduced quality of work, drug use creates higher absenteeism and risk of injury.

According to the National Safety Council, construction, entertainment, recreation and food service industries have twice the national average of employees with substance use disorders.

Think about the tasks that your employees perform. Are they driving company vehicles, using heavy machinery, or working around customers’ homes? If an employee is misusing drugs, how will their behavior affect how they act around your customers? What happens if they get into an accident? Not only could your employee be seriously injured, but your business could have hundreds or thousands of dollars in damage to equipment. In addition, think about the work being done. Is this employee skipping steps in their process? If the job has to be redone by another employee, that is added time and expense that takes away from other jobs and profits.

Drug testing policies can screen applicants who are drug users and discourage drug use by employees. With a more productive, drug-free workplace, a business could see the following benefits:

• Improved productivity
• Reduced absenteeism
• Lower turnover
• Decreased healthcare and workers compensation insurance costs
• Reduced workplace accidents

Every business is different and so is its needs. However, there is a lot at stake, especially with the current opioid epidemic. A company should consider reducing a potential drain on resources, employee engagement and customer satisfaction by implementing a workplace substance use policy, including drug testing.

Spring-Green Can Help Provide Workplace Solutions

There are a few things that business owners can do to protect themselves and their employees:

• Acknowledge that substance misuse can affect a business’s bottom line
• Create a workplace substance use policy
• Educate supervisors and employees on the signs of substance misuse
• Require a drug test after a job offer has been extended as a condition of employment

“Since many of our employees are out in the field, on clients’ property, driving company vehicles and using company equipment, we saw the need to have a substance use policy that involves drug testing,” says David Roman, Spring-Green Franchise Owner in Logansville, GA. “We want to err on the side of caution to create a better work environment for our employees and customer experience.”

Spring-Green understands the challenges unique to green industry business owners, and they supply solutions when you join their franchise opportunity. Our business consultants can talk through business strategies and workplace policies, such as substance use, with its franchise owners to determine the best course of action for the franchisee.

Spring-Green can help you grow and diversify with our 40 years of experience and our proven expertise in operations and human resources. Learn more about how Spring-Green can expand your lawn care services. Call 1-800-777-8608 or visit us at www.growmygreenindustrybusiness.com.