Monday, November 19, 2012

Can You Pass A Drug Test?

This post was written by Tony Seegers with the Ohio Chamber of Commerce

Employers Need Job Applicants Who Can Pass a Drug Test
While many are still out of work, employers in our state have jobs that are going unfilled.  How is that possible you may ask? Drug use…unfortunately some employers are finding it difficult to fill positions because job applicants either refuse to take a pre-employment drug test or they fail such a test. This has the potential to cause some industries a real problem.
The Ohio Chamber, the Ohio Association of County Behavioral Health Authorities and several local chambers and employers met to discuss this issue. While the type of drugs causing the problem varies through the state from marijuana use to hard drugs, like heroin, the results are the same. Either job applicants can’t pass a drug screen or once hired, they fail a random drug test. Employers invest time and money in hiring the workers they want and that investment is lost when an employee has to be dismissed for failing a drug screen.
The group discussed how to better educate high school students ready to enter the workforce about the economic ramifications they face by using drugs. Some employers are speaking with vocational high school students not just about possible careers with their companies, but also that high paying jobs with good benefits will escape their grasp if they use drugs, even recreationally. The idea that smoking some pot on the weekend can impact their chances at good paying, skilled jobs is something young workers need to know.
A skilled workforce is vital for Ohio companies and for those out-of-state employers considering expansion in our state. But, a skilled workforce is not one that can’t pass a drug test or will not fill out a job application because of it. Confronting this challenge is just one more aspect of how we develop the workforce Ohio needs for a globally competitive economy.
Are you witnessing this problem among your pool of job applicants? Do you have any creative solutions?  Email me at and let me know.

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