You’ve developed your policy. Maybe you’ve scheduled a drug and alcohol awareness training class for your staff. Great start! Now what?
One of the most effective ways to launch your drug testing program is to begin with a baseline test for all employees. Once your substance abuse policy is in place and you’ve clearly communicated it to your entire staff, then it’s time to begin your testing. What better way to launch a drug testing program than to have each person tested?
By doing this, you’re not accusing anyone of anything. You’re not creating a perception of unfairness by testing people arbitrarily or based on their position in the office. You’re applying the same standard to everyone.
Baseline testing accomplishes two key objectives in the critical early stages of your testing program:
1) It sends a strong message to your staff that you’re serious about maintaining a safe and drug-free work environment
2) It allows you to identify any drug problems at the very beginning of your program, which you can learn how to handle in the previous installment in this series on disciplinary consequences
One of the most practical applications of baseline drug testing is in schools. As more and more schools implement drug testing for student athletes and those who participate in extracurricular activities and/or park on campus, school systems nationwide have used baseline testing as a way to accomplish both of the above measures. By conducting one drug test for each student involved in the testing program, the intent of the program is communicated clearly, evenly, and fairly.
Baseline testing is fair. It sets a clear standard for drug testing expectations, and it gives you a foundation on which to build your program.
For information on developing a testing program or conducting a baseline test of all current employees, contact EDPM by clicking here.
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