Why have a policy?

The misuse of drugs and alcohol in the workplace can have a highly detrimental effect, not only to the employee themselves and the teams they operate in, but also to the wider organisation.

Whether an employee is in a business or safety critical role, such as one which interacts with members of the public, deals with highly sensitive information or operates a company vehicle, HGV or plant machinery, the impact of an incident due to the effects of drugs and alcohol can be astronomical.

A robust drug and alcohol policy will allow you to effectively manage the risks imposed by substance misuse within the workplace and like other policies operated within your organisation, will outline the commitment to safe working practices. Many employers adopt drug and alcohol testing as part of their policy. Whilst testing is a deterrent, using it alone will never be the complete answer to problems caused by alcohol and drug misuse and should therefore be accompanied by appropriate training, education and support.

Developing a Drug & Alcohol Policy

SYNLAB has assisted many organisations with the development of a watertight drug and alcohol policy and its implementation. Our team of trusted experts can provide assistance in the construction of a suitable policy that incorporates industry guidelines, follows industry best practice and is up to date with new and emerging drug trends.

The policy will support you in testing for drug and alcohol, as it ultimately governs what you do and how you do it, to ensure all employees are treated in a fair and consistent manner.

Why is the policy important?

  • States who is responsible within the organisation for implementing the policy
  • Identifies who the policy covers, e.g. employees, agency workers and other visitors to site
  • Confirms that drug and alcohol testing can take place
  • Outlines what types of testing can occur
  • Details how testing will occur
  • Gives a clear definition of the substances covered within by the policy
  • Outlines the company limits
  • Informs you of what happens if someone refuses, or has a positive result

Operating an effective policy is a proven, low cost strategy, which identifies those needing help, cuts down on accidents and sickness leave, reduces compensation claims, improves attendance and increases productivity within the workplace.