What’s your New Year’s Resolution?

New Years' Resolution

With 2016 coming to a close, Christmas and the New Year festivities are only a few weeks away. As with every New Year many will ask themselves, “What is my New Year’s Resolution?”, and the responses will have a general aim of self-improvement. With businesses the thought process is exactly the same, as many will be in the process of formulating a strategy in order to generate business. However, will employee safety and well-being be included as part of these resolutions?

A key feature that contributes to employee well-being is the implementation of policies, specifically a drug and alcohol policy. This type of policy is introduced by companies to provide its employees with more knowledge about the protocols around drugs and alcohol, it also provides support and assistance information, ensuring employees have a wide range of information and knowledge should any issues arrive. Below will explain more about drug and alcohol workplace policies, the need for them in the workplace and how Randox Testing Services can meet your policy requirements.

What is a substance misuse policy?

A substance misuse policy is a written document which outlines company expectations of drug and alcohol consumption at work as well as company rules, regulations, testing procedures and disciplinary procedures. A substance misuse policy is required by employers who want to carry out workplace drug and alcohol testing. This is done so to ensure employees are well informed of the existence of drug and alcohol testing in their place of work, and that their rights are met and maintained throughout the process.

What is the need for substance misuse policies?

According to the British Medical Association, drug and alcohol misuse has a significant effect on UK productivity, through issues such as sickness-related absence, inappropriate behavior, accidents and poor performance. The cost for UK businesses has been estimated at £7 billion annually. Employees who are abusing substances function at about two-thirds of their capability, and employees who use drugs are 3 times more likely to be late for work, this can have a number of knock on effects which may include damaged customer relations, impaired judgement, unwanted legal complications and potential termination of employment. Despite these associations, drug and alcohol policies are implemented within the workplace to help employees and provide mechanisms if they do have such issues or problems. These policies are also implemented to provide security to other employees, ensuring a safe working environment for all members of a company.

There are a number of legal implications to consider when implementing workplace substance misuse policies. Multiple pieces of legislation exist to ensure employers provide the best possible conditions to work. The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 places a duty on an employer to ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of their employees. Other legislation that employers must be aware of is the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 and the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. Although not applicable to all workplaces, there are also Acts of Law that put obligations on  specific types of employers and workers, these include the Road Traffic Act 1988 and the Transport and Works Act 1992.

How can Randox Testing Services Assist in writing a policy?

Our full consultancy service offers assistance in creating a new or modifying an existing workplace policy. We provide professional guidance and support to ensure an effective written document clearly portrays your company’s approach to drugs and alcohol.

To find out more about our workplace policy writing and review services visit us at www.randoxtestingservices.com or contact us at testingservices@randox.com.