Session Long Project Physical Privacy

KBR, Inc. is well-known for its business achievements in the area of Upstream, Downstream, Government, Infrastructure, and Technology services. The company has a long history of infrastructure and government services and is famous for being “the largest contractor for the United States army and a top-ten contractor for the U. S. Department of Defense” (KBR, 2009). In the light of the services which KBR, Inc. offers, the company is particularly attentive toward safety considerations.

Given the complexity of roles and obligations which KBR employees have to fulfill, safety and health is included into the set of the major company’s values. That is why implementing compulsory drug testing at workplace has become a matter of the major ethical concern. Now, as the company strives to expand its presence internationally, drug testing issues should be reconsidered from deontological and utilitarian perspectives. Session Long Project Physical Privacy Introduction KBR, Inc. is well-known for its business achievements in the area of Upstream, Downstream, Government, Infrastructure, and Technology services.

The company has a long history of infrastructure and government services and is famous for being “the largest contractor for the United States army and a top-ten contractor for the U. S. Department of Defense” (KBR, 2009). In the light of the services which KBR, Inc. offers, the company is particularly attentive toward safety issues and requirements. Given the complexity of roles and obligations which KBR employees have to fulfill, safety and health is included into the set of the major company’s values.

That is why implementing compulsory drug testing at workplace has become a matter of the major ethical concern. Now, as the company strives to expand its presence internationally, drug testing issues should be reconsidered from deontological and utilitarian perspectives. To begin with, deontology reviews the most problematic ethical issues from the viewpoint of rules and principles to which each party of an ethical conflict must adhere (Cording & Donaldson, 2002). Thus, drug testing here looks as the means to promote better safety compliance and to establish a strict set of safety regulations at workplace.

From deontological perspective, drug testing is justified by the need to improve the quality of workplace performance, to minimize the probability of incidents at workplace, and to make sure that employees realize the scope of their obligations and responsibilities. It should be noted, however, that deontological effects of drug testing are likely to be two-fold. On the one hand, drug testing will work to promote better compliance as the key to better customer satisfaction and better quality of services.

On the other hand, deontology tends to neglect the end results of drug testing. In other words, what will employees achieve by promoting compulsory drug testing for all employees? Will they improve performance, or will they break employee privacy and their right for personal life? Where deontology cannot provide answers to these questions, utilitarian considerations can be readily used to review the most controversial moments of drug testing at KBR. Utilitarianism initially places ends over means (Cording & Donaldson, 2002).

Thus, utilitarian managers at KBR will disregard the issues which employees have to face in the process of drug testing for the sake of ultimate safety and health compliance. Certainly, and it is difficult to deny this fact, drug testing will ultimately shape a new atmosphere of safety at workplace. This safety will positively impact employee performance, will improve productivity and motivation, and will also form a new social image of KBR, Inc. in general. Unfortunately, utilitarian use of drug testing is also associated with the lack of trust which employees perceive when facing compulsory need to pass drug tests.

Many employees will find themselves feeling awkward as they are requested to provide a sample of their urine for analysis. Many others will perceive drug testing as a kind of slavery which does not leave them any choice and imposes negative impressions about their employers. As employers and managers at KBR strive to achieve better profitability, safety, and to create a better corporate image, drug testing may appear an effective means of safety and health promotion. Nevertheless, KBR, Inc.

should not forget that drug testing always involves the issues of privacy which have to be balanced and resolved to ensure that the new system of testing effectively works to help managers achieve strategic company objectives. Conclusion As long as KBR, Inc. seeks to promote better health and safety compliance, drug testing is expected to improve its corporate image and to guarantee that employees keep to the predetermined set of rules and regulations. Unfortunately, drug testing is always associated with privacy issues; drug testing is the source of negative expectations and mistrust on the side of employees.

Whether from deontological or utilitarian perspectives, privacy issues remain neglected or unresolved; as a result, it is KBR managers’ responsibility to find the right balance between ethics, privacy, drug testing, and the need for better safety compliance at workplace. References Cording, M. & Donaldson, T. (2002). Ethical issues in business. Prentice Hall. KBR. (2009). Mission, vision, and values. KBR, Inc. Retrieved May 21, 2009 from http://www. kbr. com/corporate/mission_vission_and_values. aspx