Workplace Drug Abuse – Why Drug Screening Matters

Substance abuse has far-reaching implications for U.S. businesses. According to recent estimates, drug and alcohol abuse in the U.S. costs approximately $578 billion annually in economic loss. According to The National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information, the loss to U.S. companies due to employee drug and alcohol abuse totals $100 billion a year.

Below are some of the critical areas impacted by workplace substance abuse – and why drug screening matters to your business:

Workplace Accidents

Drugs and alcohol are a key factor in 3% of workplace fatalities. In addition, workers with alcohol and drug dependencies are more likely to have a job related accident, endangering themselves and/or their co-workers. This exposes employers to liability risks as well as to increased workers’ compensation claims, and higher health insurance premiums.


According to recent estimates, lost productivity and premature death account for 23% ($338 billion) of the total annual economic cost of drug and substance abuse. An employee under the influence cannot work at his or her full potential. In addition, workers who use illegal drugs have 59% more absences than non-users. As an employer, you bear the cost of these lost hours and poor performance.

Turnover Rate

Substance abuse directly impacts employee turnover. Alcohol and drug abusers are more likely to quit their jobs, or to be fired or laid off. Illegal drug users have 47% more terminations. Replacing these workers is both costly and time consuming.

Workplace Stress

Studies have found that alcohol and illegal substance use in the workplace is directly related to behaviors such as theft and selling drugs at work, as well as to increased workplace conflicts. This added level of stress can lower employee morale and negatively impact productivity.

Alcohol and drug abuse are major issues that directly impact your bottom line. At ERG Staffing, we believe that drug screening is a critical tool in maintaining a safe, productive, drug-free workplace. Prior to employment, we drug-test each candidate to screen out any individuals who actively abuse drugs, helping to improve workplace safety and productivity. To learn more about how we can help you maintain a drug-free workplace, feel free to call me at (570) 241-0667 or contact me by email at

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