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Nearly 8 in 10 employers screen for alcohol, drugs

BY Roy Maurer

According to HireRight’s 2013 Employment Screening Benchmarking Report, 78% of respondents overall conduct drug testing on some portion of their workforce.

This number jumps dramatically in the transportation industry (98%), which has additional regulatory requirements.

The 2013 report is based on survey results from more than 1,600 respondents, including human resource, security and other management professionals in a wide range of industries and organization sizes. Both HireRight customers and noncustomers were surveyed.

Overall, 19% of respondents do not conduct drug or alcohol tests and have no plans to; 3% do not conduct tests but plan to do so.

Most organizations (90%) are screening job candidates, and 71% also screen current employees. Thirty-two percent screen contingent or temporary workers.

Eighty-eight percent of respondents require these tests before the first day of work, 61% give them upon reasonable suspicion, and 59% do so when investigating an accident. Eight percent conduct testing immediately after an employee’s start date, and 4% do so with a transfer or promotion.

Types of tests vary from urine (95%) and breath alcohol (42%) to saliva (11%), blood (7%) and hair (7%). Most tests (91%) are conducted in a collection lab, but almost one-quarter of respondents (24%) said they use some form of onsite testing, too. Four percent use a mobile lab.

Testing for marijuana

Legal marijuana in the workplace has become a hot-button topic, with 18 states and the District of Columbia approving the medical use of marijuana. And in November 2012 voters in Colorado and Washington state approved its recreational use. Federal law still prohibits all types of marijuana use.

Just 12% of respondents indicated they have a medical marijuana policy, while another 10% plan to create one. Among those respondents who have such a policy, not all are necessarily taking adverse action against those who test positive: 63% do so with job candidates, and 56% do so with employees.

Roy Maurer is an online editor/manager for SHRM. Follow him on Twitter @SHRMRoy.

Have HR-related questions and concerns? Get access to essential forms, policies and guides, plus a live call center, at ToolkitHR.com, powered by HCN and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

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Osmose MicroPro treated wood products to be featured on Hometime

BY HBSDealer Staff

Hometime, a long-running television home improvement program, will be featuring Osmose MicroPro treated plywood in an episode airing in late June on PBS. The plywood will play a prominent role in a residential deck project featured in the program.

Osmose, Inc. supplies wood preservative technologies and enhancement products, as well as advanced engineering and customized marketing services. Viewers will receive practical, step-by-step advice on using its MicroPro product thanks to the instructional nature of the Hometime program.

 

 

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Margins matter in RSR’s newest benchmark report

BY HBSDealer Staff

According to “Tough Love: An In-Depth Look at Retail Pricing Practices,” the impetus to court top-line revenue is largely a remnant from the thick of the recession, with interest in using price to drive overall sales peaking in 2010. Obversely, survey respondents have maintained their interest in leveraging price to improve margins, but the ones who have held on to their top-line fixations have fared the worst in recent years.

The disparity between “Winners” and “Laggards” is particularly striking in the survey.  Sixty-five percent of laggards maintained their focus on top-line revenue, compared to 28% of winners. Meanwhile, 59% of laggards minded their margins, compared to 66% of winners. Generally speaking, retailers’ interest in using price to drive revenue fell from 58% to 39% over the last three years.

Under one interpretation of the numbers, lowering prices in a ditch-all effort to acquire more revenue is a strategy likely to do retailers more harm than good.

 

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