The Directors of HI Commercial have completed alcohol and drug awareness training with Generis, a specialist service which works with employers, as part of the charity, The Alcohol and Drug Service (ADS). 

As an accredited training provider, experts at ADS, developed the content based on over 35 years of experience in specialist Drug and Alcohol services, working in partnerships with the NHS and local authorities. It includes; Drug Awareness, Alcohol Awareness and Tackling Substance Misuse. 

Concerns and misconceptions 

HI Commercial took part in the training to address the misconceptions and concerns surrounding alcohol and drug usage amongst local workforces, in order to advise our commercial clients on where to find help. 
Luke Byron, Director at HI Commercial explains: 
“As a commercial insurance broker, we are aware of incidents where workers have been affected by alcohol and or drugs, especially in safety critical sectors where risks are obvious. However, we were surprised to find that the number of people, particularly those who are usually office-based, actually make up the majority of those affected. 
“Because of lockdown, home-workers are the biggest group affected, as last year, individuals started drinking earlier in the day, more regularly and consuming more. 
“The training revealed some surprising statistics and we hadn’t expected that more senior employees and Directors are more likely to be risking their health by using alcohol and drugs than those in less senior positions. Some case studies show that this can be more than ten times the recommended weekly alcohol consumption and illegal drugs such as heroin and cocaine are used widely to increase performance and aid relaxation.” 

CIPD Research 

Last year research findings from Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), the professional body for human resource management professionals, found the lack of support for workers using drugs and alcohol during the pandemic. 
It highlighted one in five employers were failing to offer support to workers and only 12% provide one-off training for line managers. 
Luke continues: 
“As the CIPD highlights, the number of workers affected by these issues is growing and it has become a concern for employers in all types of organisations. 
“It may seem like a difficult subject to broach with an employee or team mate, but this valuable training included tips on the signs to look out for and how to approach a person who may need support. 

Hangovers are affecting your bottom line 

A powerful message for clients like ours is that even one person who works with a hangover is affecting productivity, morale and the bottom line. Multiply this across the workforce and the impact becomes enormous. 
“The screening tools are particularly useful. The feedback is completely confidential and gives employers an excellent platform to start conversations. 
“We can recommend this training for employers, managers and supervisors. It will help to allay some of the misconceptions and help you to approach individuals for support.” 

Screening tools 

“When something doesn’t seem right - a member of the team might be making mistakes or they do not appear to be fully engaged - our training gives managers and supervisors the skills to identify the problem, approach that individual and signpost them for support.” 
“As it is not possible in the current climate to gather teams together for training - our solution makes everything available online, so learners can participate in a virtual classroom.” 
“We are acutely aware that it can be difficult for employers, who often lack the skills and knowledge to support staff with these problems and we want to help by providing this solution.” 
“We know there is an issue out there. Numbers presenting to ADS have more than doubled since restrictions first came into place in March 2020, with home workers being one of the biggest groups affected.” 

E-learning platform 

Generis has launched an e-learning platform to improve knowledge and ability to manage the issue, when substance misuse affects a person’s work. 
The portal offers a practical training resource for managers and supervisors to reduce risk within their organisation, return to productivity and better support employees who display issues. More information can be found HERE
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