Study: Who’s most afraid of a drug test

Search histories reveal a lot about a person.

And if you’re searching “does [my company] drug test,” it’s likely because some underlying concern exists. Whether you’re a prospective employee concerned about pre-employment drug screening policies, or a current employee questioning, your question offers some insight into your extracurricular activities.

Who is most concerned?

JDP, an employee-screening firm, analyzed search trends tied to more than 150 of the country’s biggest employers. They were able to identify the top 60 with the highest volume of digital inquiries about their drug policies, in relation to the total number of people in the company’s employ.

Top Ten Companies (number of employees per search):
  1. Aldi: 13
  2. PetSmart: 42
  3. Sonic Drive-In: 46
  4. GameStop: 47
  5. McDonald’s: 49
  6. Ulta Beauty: 50
  7. Hobby Lobby: 54
  8. Foot Locker: 59
  9. Target: 60
  10. Trader Joe’s: 64

Four of the top ten major brands are specialty retail, GameStop, Ulta Beauty, Hobby Lobby and PetSmart. Three of the top companies are considered grocery or superstores. While only two are fast food chains.

Given the size of some of these national brands and the thousands, if not millions, of people they employ, some of these search volume queries are surprising. Take Aldi, for example, which has one search for “does Aldi drug test” for every 13 of its employees.

National Implications

That search volume may continue to rise as states across the country move to legalize marijuana. In many instances, drug testing policies may not account for legalized, recreational use of the drug. Cannabis activists in Oregon continue to push for legislation protecting cannabis users who “fail” their drug tests at work.

While the U.S. legislates legal, measurable amounts of alcohol, there is no equivalent test for cannabis.


Tricia Harte is a Columnist at GritDaily. Her column focuses on brands and emerging technology. She is a former reporter for FOX59 News.

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