The Department of Labor’s Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS) announced a new program to recognize employers leading the way in Veteran employment. The Honoring Investments in Recruiting and Employing (HIRE) American Military Veterans Act was signed into law in May, and the rule implementing the program was announced as part of 2017 Veterans Day ceremonies. The HIRE Vets Medallion Program will highlight organizations with successful programs to recruit and retain Veterans.
New Program to Encourage Veteran Recruitment Efforts
Last week, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced a new program under the recently signed HIRE Vets Act to recognize employers taking a proactive approach to recruiting and employing Veterans. When announcing the program, newly appointed Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta said, “…veterans have a wide range of abilities that make them tremendous assets for the American economy and for any employer.”
The Vietnam Era Veteran’s Readjustment Assistance Act (VEVRAA) hiring benchmark for Veterans has changed to 6.7% effective March 31, 2017. This is the fourth time the Veteran hiring benchmark has been lowered since the requirement was first put in place by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) in 2014. Companies with affirmative action plan dates of March 31, 2017, or later should use the new hiring benchmark to measure Veteran hiring during the upcoming plan year. Below is a list of the previous Veteran hiring benchmarks, with effective dates.
It is time to wrap up 2016 and put a bow around it. This has been an eventful year for many reasons—one of which was the impact of increased pressure on federal contractors and sub-contractors from OFCCP. Many of you have Affirmative Action Programs (AAP) that are effective January 1, 2017. As you wrap up 2016 here are some issues to keep in mind:
Military Veterans continue to face difficulty translating their skills and experience into civilian terms, but employers can help them, consultants say.
‘‘One of the top concerns I hear from both Veterans and employers is the difficulty with properly translating military skills and experience into the required skill sets for civilian jobs,’’ Beth Ronnenburg, president of Columbia, Md.-based HR consultancy Berkshire Associates Inc., told Bloomberg BNA in an Oct. 27 email. ‘‘Military personnel find it overwhelming when they have to read through hundreds of job descriptions to find jobs for which they are qualified; some also find it challenging to determine which civilian jobs match the skillset they developed in the military.’’
Companies who are required to file EEO-1s must file their reports by September 30, 2016. The desired method for filing EEO-1s is by entering the data into the EEO-1 website or generating an electronic upload file. For companies who have been filing by an electronic upload file, there is an exciting new development.