Although having a clear and concise policy is the main key to successfully managing the issue of alcohol and drugs in the workplace, training is also a significant component and one that sometimes gets overlooked.
The issue of alcohol and drugs in the workplace is an emotive subject and the training you provide needs to set the right tone. The training should focus on the positive that the policy will bring to the workplace. Getting it right will give you more engaged employees who are more likely to raise a concern if they know their employer will deal with the issue in a sensitive and confidential manner.
Training needs to be effectively communicated to all your employees so that they not only have a clear understanding of the rules of the policy but also the need the company has to maintain a safe and productive working environment.
Let’s be clear, training is not putting up posters and having the policy pinned to notice boards, nor is it sending the policy to each employee and asking them to sign that they have received it.
As managers will be responsible for the day to day implementation of the policy, they will need a more in-depth approach to their training but with the same positive message. Simply giving managers the policy and asking them to implement it is not going to give them the confidence they need to apply it consistently or fairly, or worse still, they do nothing.
This in-depth training will give managers the confidence and competence to manage the policy in a sensitive and confidential way, whether it is an employee who is impaired at work or an employee who has an alcohol or drug dependency. What is also important is that managers are provided with supporting documents to help them deal with each individual case consistently regardless of the issue.
As with employee training, manager training should not be a one-off, it should be on-going and also be carried out at least annually to refresh, reinforce and remind. New managers should also be provided with this training.
Sometimes it is the cost or the logistics of getting people trained that can stop a company from implementing a comprehensive training programme, but this is false economics. Investing in training will benefit not only the company but also the employees who will be more engaged, valued and productive.
If you would like further information on effective training and awareness programmes, please call Hampton Knight on 01827 65999.