Cost-Effectiveness of Substance Abuse Treatment in Casino Hotels
One of today’s business realities is the prevalence of employee substance abuse – a particularly acute problem for the hospitality industry. Merely getting rid of substance-abusing employees is, at best, a cosmetic solution. Faced with labor shortages, growing “wrongful termination” litigation, and legislative mandates that promote a drug-free workplace and prohibit employee discrimination of recovering substance abusers, employers are investing in employee-assistance programs (EAPs) that provide substance-abuse treatment and permit the employer to retain an otherwise productive employee. Like any investment, a cost-benefit analysis such as that described in this article can provide a framework for evaluating the relative advantages of various types of EAPs.
Among the more tangible benefits of treating substance abusing employees is reduced turnover and absenteeism: expensive problems that otherwise might go unchecked. As a way of presenting our cost-benefit analysis, we compare the EAPs at two casino hotels which have quite different substance-abuse programs: the Mirage, in Las Vegas, and Merv Griffin’s Resorts International Hotel-Casino, in Atlantic City. In this article, we focus only on the programs’ effects on absenteeism and turnover, recognizing full well that there are many other benefits, both tangible and intangible, that accrue when employee substance-abuse problems are addressed by managers.View Full Article