The University of Alabama, Division of Finance and Operations

Pre-Employment Drug Screening Policy

Unit:  Human Resources
Contact: Susan Norton
Title:  Senior Associate Vice President for Human Resources and Chief Human Resources Officer
Effective Date: 10/15/2007
Revision Date: 11/12/2018



The Division of Finance and Operations has adopted a drug screening policy to prevent the hiring of individuals into safety sensitive positions who are under the influence of prohibited drugs.


Effective October 15, 2007, as a condition of employment, all individuals (who are not currently employed by The University of Alabama) who are offered a position that is identified as safety sensitive in the Division of Finance and Operations will be required to submit to drug screening. For the purpose of this policy, the term “prohibited drug(s)” will include any drug prohibited by federal law or University policy; prescribed drugs consumed by the applicant, but, not prescribed to the applicant; any drug that is illegally obtainable; and/or any drug that is legally obtainable, but, is not being used for the prescribed purpose or is not being taken according to the prescribed dosages. A safety sensitive position is defined as one with duties that could potentially pose a significant risk of harm to the employee, other employees, students, or the general public in the event of inattention to duty or errors in judgment.

Screening is conducted post-offer, but, prior to the applicant beginning the job. The applicant must be screened within 3 business days of the job offer. Applicants who refuse to consent to drug screening or who test positive for prohibited drugs will have the job offer revoked and will not be eligible for any other positions covered by this policy for a period of one year.

All drug screening will be conducted at or coordinated by the University Medical Center, 850 Fifth Avenue East, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. All screening procedures will adhere to federal guidelines that address specimen collection and chain-of-custody requirements. The screening procedure also includes, in the event of a positive drug screen, an automatic confirmation of the original sample by a referenced toxicology lab.

The test will screen for drugs which include, but are not limited to the following: THC, Opiates, Amphetamines, Cocaine, Phencyclidines (PCP), Barbiturates, Methadone, Benzodiazepines, Methamphetamines/MDMA, and Propoxyphenes. If the candidate fails either the specific gravity or temperature checks in the initial sample, a witnessed second sample will be taken.

Departmental Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of each department within the Division of Finance and Operations to follow the procedures set forth in this policy. In addition, each department is required to:

  1. Create and maintain accurate job descriptions for all positions so that Human Resources can determine if a position qualifies as safety sensitive.
  2. Refer external applicants who are interviewed to the policy on the web and have them sign the Drug Screening Form before the drug screen is administered.
  3. Designate and identify a departmental employee to implement these procedures and to answer questions about this policy.


  1. Human Resources will determine which positions will be covered by this policy based on the job duties of the position. If a position is deemed to be safety sensitive, the following language will be added to the minimum qualifications of the position description: Final candidates, who are not current University of Alabama employees, must submit to and successfully pass a post-offer drug screen. This language will also appear in the position requisition (posting) so external applicants are notified that they must submit to a post-offer drug screen.
  2. When recruiting a position, hiring managers should ensure that all steps within the requisition process are followed. The hiring manager will have all external applicants interviewed sign the Drug Screening Form (which the hiring manager will retain with any other documents/materials related to the recruitment) and refer them to the HR website to view the policy.
  3. Once all applicable background checks are completed and approved on the final candidate, the hiring manager will change applicant’s status to Finalist Recommendation and should proceed with the offer approval process in the on-line system.
  4. When the offer has been approved (the status of the requisition will be at Ready for Offer), the hiring manager will extend a job offer to the final candidate – conditional on the successful completion of the drug screen, if applicable, and the hiring manager will change the applicant’s status to Offered Job.
  5. If the final candidate accepts the conditional offer, the hiring manager (or designee) will:
    1. Change the applicant status to Pending Drug Screen.
    2. Email the appropriate contact at UMC (Director of Lab & X-Ray) with the candidate’s name, the department’s name, FOAP information, and the candidate’s deadline date for the drug screen. UMC will initiate a Departmental Transfer to charge the department for the procedure. The assigned HR Partner/Specialist should be copied on the email.
    3. Inform the final candidate he/she must take the drug screen at UMC within 3 business days of the offer. They must take a picture ID with them.
    4. For out-of-town or out-of-state applicants, arrangements will be made through UMC for the applicant to take the drug screen within 3 business days at a lab close to their home or work address. To meet this timeframe, UMC will send a Chain of Custody form overnight via UPS to the final candidate. The hiring manager will email the candidate’s name, home address, contact phone number, as well as the department’s name and FOAP information to the appropriate contact at UMC. The assigned HR Partner/Specialist should be copied on this email.
  6. If the final candidate declines the conditional offer, the hiring manager will change the applicant status to the appropriate Not Hired reason.
  7. If the final candidate accepts the conditional offer but fails to submit to the drug screen within 3 business days, the hiring manager will revoke the conditional job offer and change the applicant status to Not Hired - Did Not Complete Drug Screen.
  8. Upon receipt of the drug screen results, the HR Partner/Specialist will:
    1. If results are negative, change the applicant status to Drug Screen Approved and contact hiring manager.
    2. If results are positive:
  1. Contact the hiring manager to communicate the results.
  2. Contact the applicant to communicate the results and rescind the job offer.
  • If necessary, refer the final candidate to the UMC lab for questions.
  1. Change the applicant status to Not Hired – Drug Screen Not Approved.
  2. Inform the appropriate ER Consultant so information can be noted in the on-line application system.
  1. The Hiring Manager, upon receipt of the final results, will:
    1. If results are negative, contact final candidate and move forward with the hiring process.
    2. If results are positive, since the job offer is being rescinded, move forward by identifying another suitable candidate in the applicant pool or by reposting the position.
  2. All information received in the drug screening process will be maintained in confidential, secure files, separate from employee personnel files, with access allowed only to those who have a need to know.


This policy applies to all faculty and staff.


Office of the Vice President of Finance and Operations

Approved by Cheryl Mowdy, Assistant Vice President for Finance and Operations, 11/12/2018