Can your company afford to NOT have a drug testing policy? Drug Abuse in the Workplace Costs Your Company Money

By Bill Nee, VP Sales/Marketing uVera Diagnostics

The Cost of Drug Abuse in the Workplace


If you have employees abusing drugs, it’s costing your company money. It is estimated that employers lose up to $100 billion dollars per year* due to drug abuse in the workplace. Why is drug abuse so costly for employers? In this blog, we will discuss the costs associated with drug abuse and how employers, like you, can stop losing money.


The Cost of Drug Abuse in the Workplace


You’re probably asking yourself, how it’s possible that drug abuse in the workplace can be so expensive for your company? There are many costs associated with employees who abuse drugs. Some of the reasons include:

  • Increased absenteeism – Typically, someone abusing drugs will frequently call in sick or simply won’t show up for work.
  • Increased worker compensation claims – Do you have employees who operate machinery or drive? Someone who abuses drugs is more likely to have an accident, which can result in a costly claim.
  • Increased employee turnover – Employees who abuse drugs tend to stay at jobs for shorter amounts of time, frequently switching between companies and occupations. This increases your hiring and training costs.
  • More errors and poor decision-making – Drugs impair decision-making skills. An employee, who is “high” or overly tired at work, is bound to make more errors.
  • Decreased productivity – Absenteeism, tardiness or impairments because of drug addiction, affect work productivity. Drug addicts tend to lack the output and productivity that their clean and sober counterparts can produce.
  • Larger chance of theft – Drugs are addictive and cost money, so addiction can change someone’s behavior and priorities. They need money to support their habit. When drugs are in the picture, they become the priority over morals, family, jobs, friends, etc.


How does your business or organization reduce these costs?Drug Abuse in the Workplace


Drug testing programs and policies help companies avoid hiring and financing employees with low-productivity because of drug abuse. This has a trickle-down affect. Because so many large companies are requiring pre-employment drug testing, it shifts more drug abusers to smaller businesses that don’t have a drug testing policy. The only way to protect your company from incurring these unnecessary losses is to implement and maintain a drug testing program.


Let’s Talk Statistics


You might be thinking, “How can a simple drug testing policy save my company money? Doesn’t a drug testing program cost money too?” Let’s take a look at the statistics from the 2011 Drug Efficacy Study conducted by The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the Drug and Alcohol Testing Industry Association (DATIA), to back up our claims.

  • As stated before, employers lose up to $100 billion dollars per year* due to drug abuse in the workplace.
  • The 2011 Drug Efficacy Study showed that drug testing improves productivity rates. 19% of businesses reported an increase in productivity following the implementation of a drug testing program.
  • The study found that in companies with high absenteeism (greater than 15%), the implementation of a drug testing program reduced absenteeism rates. 9% percent of companies reported high absenteeism rates prior to the program; only 4% reported high rates after the program. That’s cutting absenteeism in half.
  • The study found that in companies with high workers’ compensation incidences (greater than 6%), the implementation of a drug testing program reduced these incidences by 50%. 14% of businesses reported high workers’ compensation incidences prior to the program; only 6% reported high rates after the program.
  • The study showed that drug testing decreases turnover rates; 16% of businesses reported a decrease in employee turnover rates following the implementation of a drug testing program.

What does this prove? Drug testing policies DO work, and they can save your business or organization money in the long run. With the potential to cut absenteeism in half, reduce workers’ compensations claims by 50%, and by improving productivity while decreasing employee turnover, a drug testing policy can save your company money. The real question you should be asking yourself at this point is can your company afford to NOT have a drug testing policy?


Would you like more information on drug testing in the workplace? Click here to download a free copy of our e-book, “Drug Testing in the Business World. What Every Company Needs to Know.”

uVera Diagnostics is a drug testing company, working with companies and organizations to reduce costs associated with drug abuse. Our CR3 drug testing cup is CLIA approved, and an easy-to-use mess-free way to drug test. Click here to browse drug tests. Click here to learn more about implementing a drug testing program. Need assistance? Give us a call toll free at 1-866-242-5930.


* U.S. Department of Labor


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Posted by Bill Nee, VP Sales/Marketing uVera Diagnostics and Co-designer and Developer of the CR3 split-sample drug test cup. Bill has 27 years in sales management and marketing and is a 12 year veteran of the drug testing industry. As a parent and co-worker, Bill’s energy is focused on drug testing on every level. Addiction is all around us in alcohol, prescriptions and street drugs, and that is a constant reminder a drug free society starts with each and every one of us.

For more information on drug testing, click here or call 1-866-242-5930.

This information is meant for awareness and education purposes only. Any medical or life saving advice should come from experts. Always consult with your physician about any and all drugs. If it is an emergency, dial 911 or call emergency services.

Images courtesy of by ddpavumba (pill with money) and imagerymajestic (businessman)

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