6 Qualities of The Best Drug Testing Companies

Eliana Yamouni

Implementing drug testing in the workplace can help enhance safety, improve productivity, and reduce employee turnover and absenteeism. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) conducted a survey on the impacts of drug testing programs for job candidates.  It showed these results for employers with drug testing programs:

  • 19 percent reported an improvement in productivity
  • 16 percent saw a decrease in employee turnover
  • 8 percent fewer reported workers’ compensation safety incidence rates of more than six percent, a decrease of more than 50 percent of employers in this category
  • 5 percent fewer reported high absenteeism rates (more than 15 percent)

Substance abuse has been linked to some workplace injuries, so implementing a drug testing program as soon as possible may reduce injuries and act as a strong deterrent to substance use. Although drug testing companies may offer similar services, they are not all created equal. Fortunately, finding the right provider can be simple if you know what to look for.

Criteria for a drug testing business

1. Reliable testing process

When it comes to determining whether employees or job applicants are using drugs, there’s no room for error. If you are currently searching for a drug testing provider, look for one with trusted procedures such as:

  • Thorough collection process
  • Rigorous evaluation
  • Secure non-negative test procedures
  • Dependable reporting options

Remember, the drug testing provider you work with is an extension of your company and, thus, should be professional, accurate, and have a good system in place so you don’t have to worry about mistakes and privacy breaches.

2. Services tailored to your business

Drug testing requirements often differ from business to business, so you’ll want a well-rounded drug testing provider that can meet all your needs. Standard tests include hair, urine, blood, and saliva testing. For employees in safety-sensitive functions regulated by the Department of Transportation (DOT), urine drug testing is a necessity. Beyond that, determine if the provider offers drug testing for pre-employment, reasonable suspicion, post-accident, and random selection purposes.

Offering substance abuse educational services is also an important part of managing a drug-free workplace. If your company policy requires employees to be completely drug-free, having access to substance abuse awareness training can help educate supervisors on how to detect the signs. Knowing the signs of substance abuse can help employers identify those who may be struggling with it and lead them to the support that they need. This will ultimately help reduce substance abuse and promote a safer workplace.

3. Location convenience

It is important to keep in mind where your company wants to administer drug testing. If you are looking for a drug testing provider that offers in-house testing, you’ll want to make sure there are multiple locations available within proximity of your employees. On the other hand, if your company has the resources to perform onsite drug testing within the workplace, you’ll need a provider that is willing to come to you. Either way, make sure the drug testing provider you choose can cater to your locational needs.

4. Third-party administrator capabilities

If your company uses multiple occupational health providers, having access to third-party administrator (TPA) collaboration is a must. TPAs manage and consolidate a company’s medical services, which can make employers’ jobs easier. If this is something that could benefit your company, make sure you choose a drug testing provider that is experienced in collaborating with TPAs.

5. Reasonable pricing

When assessing the cost of drug testing for your business, it is important to consider three main factors:

  • The types of tests your company wants to administer
  • The number of panels included in the tests
  • The number of people that will be tested

A typical drug test can cost anywhere from $20-$200 based primarily on the criteria listed above. Although it may seem costly, implementing a drug testing program will ultimately help reduce avoidable expenses that arise from drug-related incidents.

6. Regulatory expertise

One of the most important factors in the decision-making process is ensuring that a drug testing provider is compliant with drug testing regulations. Non-compliance can result in serious consequences and expensive penalties, so it should be a top priority for companies to choose a drug testing business that stays current with all relevant state and federal regulations.

Drug testing for federal agencies and federally regulated industries is administered by a SAMHSA-certified lab using procedures overseen by the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Health and Human Services Department (HHS).

Finding the right drug testing business is the next step in your company’s journey to create a drug-free workplace. The process for finding the right provider may seem complicated, but if you keep these six considerations in mind, you’ll find the best fit for your company.


  1. SHRM Poll: Half of Employers Conduct Drug Tests on Final Job Candidates. (2020, March). Retrieved from Society for Human Resources Management: