Testing applicants for drug use as a part of the prescreening process, while a highly debated subject, is a rather common occurrence among staffing agencies of the 21st century. Despite the widespread usage of drug testing today, statistics from the American Management Association show that actual numbers of employers who do test their employees are on a decline.  Despite this fact, there are some trends and patterns that can be seen in drug testing today, especially within the staffing industry.

Types of Drug Tests

There are a number of methods that are used in order to detect the presence of drug in a user’s system. By far the most traditional method of drug testing is through a urinalysis, or the testing of one’s urine. The urinalysis test is rather inexpensive, unobtrusive and easy to implement. However, the results of this type of test can be easily altered to avoid detection.

Other types of drug tests are used less often, especially in the staffing industry. Tests involving one’s saliva, hair or even blood can be performed, though they are typically only used following a serious workplace accident or injury. Drug tests involving hair are usually able to uncover a longer timeline of drug use, while saliva tests are typically used to detect recent drug use.

Frequency of Testing

According to a recent survey that focused specifically on drug testing and the staffing industry, 45 percent of agencies currently perform drug tests on every single recruit. Only 12 percent of staffing agencies said that they rarely, if at all, perform drug tests, while 29 percent said they test more than half of their recruits. Conversely, only 14 percent report drug testing on less than half of their recruits.

Interestingly enough, most of the survey’s respondents, approximately 64 percent, report no difference in their drug testing policies over the course of time. Moreover, approximately 32 percent of respondents reported that they have actually increased their drug testing efforts over time. Only four percent indicated that they’ve cut back on the amount of drug tests they perform.

Drug testing within the staffing industry also shows some other interesting trends. According to the survey, 95 percent of respondents said that their drug testing policies are not decided based on a recruit’s position, level or status. Furthermore, 92 percent of respondents said that drug testing does not depend on the amount of time someone has been employed. In other words, most staffing agencies who use drug testing on a regular basis are doing so in a fair and consistent manner across the board.

Outside Factors

Apart from the emerging patterns and trends seen in the staffing industry as of late, there are still a number of outside factors that contribute to a company’s drug testing policies. Some states, having legalized marijuana for medicinal or even recreational use, see their staffing agencies taking a relaxed stance toward drug testing. Others, however, even in these states, have ramped up their own drug-testing efforts.

At Automation Personnel Services, we pride ourselves on the quality of our employees and feel our greatest resource is our past, present and future employees. The screening process for our applicants allows us to best match their skills and training to the positions.  Contact our great team today to get help with light industrial staffing in the Southeast.

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