How frequently should employee urine drug testing take place? 

Employee drug testing is essential for most employers. Whether it be pre-employment testing or regular testing during the time of employment, it can be beneficial for companies to test their workers to ensure compliance with company policies and regulations. Laws on drug testing can vary according to state. Most public sector employers are required to drug test their workers, but many private employers are not. However, it is generally still a good idea to use testing, like urine testing, every once in a while.

Different criteria for testing frequency

  • Private versus public employers — Like previously mentioned, most public sector employers are required by law to conduct pre-employment drug testing. However, private companies’ urine drug testing policies are not enforced by law, so it is up to the discretion of the company.
  • Reasonable suspicion — If an employer suspects a worker of being under the influence, they can require a urine drug test be taken by the worker. What warrants “reasonable suspicion” is technically up to the employer, but there are guidelines for employers to follow when determining what qualifies as “reasonable suspicion.”
  • State and local laws — Many states in the U.S. have enacted laws regarding drug testing and are generally designed to benefit both employers and employees. These laws generally ensure that workers cannot be tested without notice and that companies must regularly distribute drug testing policies.

Common testing frequencies

  • Prior to employment.
  • Upon reasonable suspicion.
  • Periodically.
  • Randomly.
  • After a positive drug test result.

These are all common urine testing frequencies that companies adopt, but some companies may have to keep another organization’s policies in mind when determining how often to test their employees. 

Department of Transportation’s (DOT) testing frequency

Company policy or state regulations may mandate urine drug testing frequency for certain employees. However, companies and employees in the transportation industry must also keep the DOT’s testing guidelines in mind. The DOT’s testing policies require that an employee undergo testing in the following conditions:

  • Prior to employment.
  • Upon reasonable suspicion.
  • Randomly.
  • When returning to work after a prior violation.
  • Post-accident.

Seeking drug testing services for your business? The Background Experts team is here to help!

Doing employee drug screenings can be frustrating and time consuming. Fortunately, our Background Experts team can take this task off your hands. Our team members have 30 years of combined experience in performing employee background screenings, and we’re fully FCRA certified. We also offer a wide range of drug screening services that can help HR managers and hiring agents ensure that their potential employees are fully vetted and ready to get to work. 

In addition to full-service DOT and non-DOT drug screening services, Background Experts offers in-office OralTox oral fluid drug testing kits. Rapid oral testing saves time and money by providing immediate results, thereby expediting the hiring process. OralTox kits return results in less than 10 minutes and with less than half the cost of traditional laboratory testing.

Contact our team today for more information about our services or to talk to one of our background screening experts.