How Self Storage Facilities Can Increase Drug Testing Efficiency

by Sarah Hope

Not every self-storage facility requires their prospective employees and potential property managers to conduct pre-employment drug screenings, but every self-storage property owner should consider implementing this practice.

Property managers and other employees are given a lot of responsibility. They are asked to drive company vehicles, protect customers’ property from theft and uphold the good reputation of your company, so it is important that your employees go about their business in a safe and drug-free way.

Implementing pre-employment drug screenings is an important process and it is imperative that you create an efficient drug screening process that creates quick and accurate results. A drug testing process that makes potential employees wait too long for results can put your company at risk of losing good talent. No one is willing to wait on a job forever so here are a few tips that will ensure you implement a quick and accurate drug testing policy.

Implement A Policy

Before you start pre-employment drug screenings it is important to create a drug testing policy.  A good policy is essential to ensuring that screenings are efficient and fair.

When creating a drug testing policy, consistency is key. Drug testing policies should be conducted the same way every time for every current and prospective employee. This means if you using five-panel drug testing than you must continue to use five-panel drug testing for every employee. If you wish to conduct hair testing than you should stick with this type of testing throughout the hiring process.

If your drug testing policy states that every employee must undergo a drug test, then every employee must undergo a drug test. Consistently following your drug testing policy will ensure that everyone is being treated equally and will your company maintain accurate testing results.

Hire an Expert

Implementing a drug testing policy is not a simple task and you should consult with an expert on how to create the best testing policy. consultants will ensure that your policy clearly states the type of testing you do and when you conduct drug testing. A consultant will also teach you the foundations of every drug test so you understand the type of test prospective employees are taking.

The fact of the matter is that drug testing is important. It minimizes risk by helping self storage companies ensure their employees are the right people to uphold your company’s reputation.

Create an In-House Program

Drug testing does not need to require prospective employees to drive to your local lab and wait to be tested. Employees can conduct same-day on-site drug testing with the proper training. Your local drug testing companies will train HR managers to conduct drug tests onsite at the time the prospective employee is applying for the position at your company. Your HR managers will be trained to conduct saliva or hair based drug testing meaning prospective employees can get accurate testing results on the same day they applied.

Training your HR department to conduct drug tests is a great way to increase the efficiency of your pre-employment process; however, not every self-storage facility has or needs an HR department that can conduct drug screenings so other options are available. If you do not have the resources to train your staff on drug testing, you can hire a local lab to do in house testing. Drug testing companies will gladly come to you and conduct drug testing with same-day results.

Don’t keep your prospective employees waiting on test results. In-house drug testing will ensure you are getting accurate results so you can quickly bring on the newest member of your team.

Sarah Hope is the CEO of 911 Drug Testing in Tempe and Glendale Arizona. 911 Drug Testing is a one-stop-shop for background checks, drug testing, fingerprinting and immunization.  

5 Tech Trends for Self-Storage in 2020

While Baby Boomers are downsizing, millennials are accumulating more and running out of room for their stuff.. As a result self-storage facilities have seen an uptick in technology “wants” from customers. Aside from innovative moving services and climate-controlled units, here are a few ways the market is answering those demands. 

1. On-Demand Services

The on-demand industry satiates people’s instant gratification craving flawlessly. As expected, this trend is overflowing to the self-storage industry, as well. From reserving a storage facility online or ordering pick up and delivery of your stored items with an app on your phone.

2. Automation

Kiosks are popping up all across the nation and for various industries. When it comes to self-storage, customers now desire a more hands-on approach—and kiosks are the answer. At the touch of a fingertip, customers can complete the self-storage rental process from beginning to end. 

Plus, kiosks are typically available 24/7 and are synced with the owner’s data, making the self-storage experience seamless (and attractive). 

3. Increased Security 

Gone are the days of using a gruff-looking guard dog or building a higher fence to protect valuable property. Instead, self-storage facilities are turning to technology to bolster their security systems.  

Some facilities are forgoing the old key and padlock approach, opting instead for keypads with codes or locks that can opened with a mobile app. Not only do these security methods offer owners more control over access to their items, but they provide more protection to customers as well. What’s more is that it’s no biggie if a customer forgets or loses their key. 

4. Remote Monitoring 

Knowing how stored items are holding up is a significant concern for many self-storage customers. With climate-controlled units on the rise, people are genuinely worried about their things. 

According to SFGate, technology is answering this particular concern, too, through remote monitoring. From thousands of miles away, a customer and owner can be alerted of an issue with the unit.

Perhaps the power goes out, or there’s a leak in the facility. No matter what the problem, owners can fix the issue in real-time thanks to remote monitoring.

5. Cloud Tech Software

Few people enjoy desktops covered in paperwork or flow charts scattered around the office. Cloud tech software offers a more sophisticated approach to managing your self-storage facility. 

Owners can track industry trends, view sales figures, monitor customer activity, observe employee production, and so much more. This updated software helps to streamline your everyday operations, keeping you current on all business activities. 

When used suitably, technology can offer self-storage facility owners a hassle-free way of doing business. 

5 Things This NY New Self-Storage Facility Got Right

Attracting quality self-storage facility tenants calls for a well thought out approach. That said, an Albany-based real estate group recently opened a new self-storage facility in the small town of Halfmoon, NY. According to The Daily Gazette, the addition to Saratoga County is so strategic that it’s hard to miss the details of its marketing plan.

Here’s what ValuSpace did right to drum up business and what the industry can learn from their successful endeavor.

1. Offers Temperature Controlled Units

The Rosenblum Companies invested $9 million into the three-story, 91,000-square-foot building. Amid the hefty price tag, they made the main building temperature-controlled—all 618 units. Sometimes, traditional storage will suffice. However, including a temperature-controlled portion to the self-storage facility opened up many benefits to potential tenants, including:

  • Protection from dust and debris
  • Better air quality
  • Humidity control
  • A guard from extreme temperatures

2. Variety of Unit Sizes

Homeowners, renters, and small business customers have specific self-storage needs. In other words, a one size fits all approach doesn’t usually work when it comes to attracting a variety of self-storage customers. 

ValuSpace Personal Storage got creative with their marketing, offering units ranging in size from 25 square feet to 300 square feet. Instead of trying to cram items into one unit, this customized approach serves the varied needs of potential customers better.

3. Located Near Major Retailers

Self-storage facilities often have a reputation for being “lost” in the middle of open space or tucked away out of sight and mind. But the Rosenblum Companies aimed for convenience and sustainability when it developed the ValuSpace facility along one of the county’s most heavily traveled corridors. Not only does this approach make it more comfortable for tenants to access their units, but it also supports economic development, as well. 

4. Armed with Advanced Security Systems

ValuSpace’s future likely includes partnering with small companies that use storage spaces. To drum up this particular business, though, the facility features advanced security systems, such as:

Ensuring the safety of tenant’s property is a top priority for most self-storage facilities, and it is a smart way to minimize potential liability issues that could arise from theft to fraudulent insurance claims.

5. Answered a Community Demand

Building a high-quality self-storage facility wouldn’t have done any good if it stood useless to the surrounding community. However, the Rosenblum Companies wanted to draw homeowners, renters, and small business owners. Hence, the multitude of benefits of renting a space. What’s more; is that there isn’t another facility around for miles. So, the community welcomed the arrival of ValuSpace with open arms. Hats off to this NY facility!

3 Ways Security Cameras Benefit Your Self-Storage Facility

One self-storage facility owner in Oklahoma experienced over $50K worth of equipment stolen in a matter of five months, according to KOCO news. The worst part is that the thieves executed their plans in broad daylight, despite locks on the gates.

Until he installed multiple security cameras, this Oklahoma businessman was bleeding green dollar bills in the form of ladders, trailers, and even a dump truck. However, his proactive stance seemed to “declare war” on the criminals. Not only did the footage put local authorities hot on the criminals’ trail, but it also safeguarded the self-storage facility for future business.

This particular Oklahoma headline drives home how vulnerable self-storage facilities are without preventive security measures. But here’s how security cameras can change all of that.

1. Deters Thieves

Few criminals are 100 percent fearless, which is good for you. When locks, signs, or even the revealing sunlight doesn’t cut it, it’s time to turn technical. No matter which way you look at it, getting caught doing something wrong is an innate fear inside of most individuals—including thieves. 

By installing security cameras, you trigger that natural fear in what is known as the deterrence effect. Plenty of criminals are terrified of having their guilty mug caught on camera, or at least have enough sense to move on to a target that doesn’t have cameras. This feeling is so intense that most individuals will avoid getting caught rather than going through with the theft.

2. Alerts Authorities

Although the Oklahoma businessman notified local authorities, the police were mostly powerless to locate any thieves with only a missing items report. However, security cameras put a new twist on the situation by offering time, strategy, and the physical demeanor of the criminals. Armed with this information, ending the string of robberies was well within grasp. 

3. Appeals to Customers

Remember, what appeals to customers doesn’t always seem as alluring to criminals. For example, a self-storage facility that markets itself as “equipped with security cameras” won’t look as charming to someone who wants to break into it. 

But for honest customers looking for a safe place to stash their goods, video cameras are an amenity that will make them more likely to rent a storage unit from you. Promoting the fact that you have security cameras installed is a great way to market your facility to security conscious consumers.

Preventing Fires at Self-Storage Facilities

A fire broke out this week at an Aurora, MO self-storage facility resulting in losses for several tenants.

According to KYTV, one tenant reported that they had belongings in a unit for 16 years. Among their possessions was their marriage license, pictures of their daughter and supplies for a home remodel.

While a cause has not official been determined, it is suspected that someone may have been living inside of a unit illegally.

Meanwhile in West Virginia, a woman is suing a self-storage facility after her possessions were destroyed by water used to put out a fire that erupted on the roof.

As these cases demonstrate, fires are a risk that self-storage owners and managers must be vigilant against at all times.

Here are a few ways that you can help prevent fires at your self-storage facility:

1. Watch Out For Squatters

One of the biggest causes of fires at self-storage facilities is from people illegally living in units. Homeless individuals squatting in self-storage units may use candles, propane or kerosene to keep warm, and these of course can easily cause a fire.

Routinely inspect units and check security camera footage to identify any potential stowaways.

2. Prohibit Smoking

Cigarettes are another common cause of fires. Eliminate this risk, and encourage healthy habits, by banning smoking on your premises.

3. Check Smoke Detectors

Be sure to regularly check and test smoke detectors, and replace backup batteries as needed.

4. Install and Maintain Fire Extinguishers

Fire extinguishers should be available throughout your facility in the event that a fire starts. Make sure that fire extinguishers are charged and not expired.

5. Perform a Routine Inspection Everyday

Your management staff should include checking for potential fire hazards among their end of day duties. For example, make sure the trash area is tidy and free of dangerous items like oily rags.

With proper prevention you can greatly reduce the risk of fires at your facility.