Your affirmative action plan is done, you have interpreted and communicated the results, and your outreach efforts are in place. You are finally finished! However, if it has been a while since you last reviewed your other compliance obligations, you may still have some work to do.
Developing your affirmative action program goes beyond preparing a written AAP. Contractors must also comply with a variety of other technical requirements which are often checked during a compliance evaluation. The list below highlights just some of the technical compliance items you might be asked about during an OFCCP audit.
Required Postings, Listings, and Notices:
Contractors must post an Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action Statement of Policy along with other federal and state labor posters. The policy must be available to all employees and applicants, protected veterans and individuals with disabilities in accessible formats, and should be reviewed and signed annually, usually by the top U.S. based official.
Employers must post a copy of the Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law poster and supplement poster, and the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination poster in a conspicuous location in the workplace where notices to applicants and employees are usually posted. The Pay Transparency poster must also be included in employee handbooks and manuals.
Under the Vietnam Era Veteran’s Readjustment Act of 1974, federal contractors are required to list open jobs with the state or local Employment Service Delivery System (ESDS) office covering the location where the job will be located, unless the position lasts 3 days or less, is filled internally, or is an executive and senior level manager position. Contractors must notify the ESDS that they are a federal contractor and request priority referrals of veterans. Remember to keep all records as OFCCP routinely asks for this type of documentation during a compliance review.
Contractors must annually notify worker representatives (including temporary staffing firms), referral sources, and labor unions (where applicable), of their commitment to nondiscrimination and affirmative action.
Contractors must incorporate the EEO Clause in all contracts, subcontracts, and purchase orders. The clause may be incorporated by reference, but the specific language must be in bold.
Verify that solicitations and job advertisements for employees include the required EEO tagline. OFCCP has specific rules for creating an EEO tagline, so make sure your organization is using the correct format. It is not acceptable to use abbreviations such as M/F/D/V, however Protected Veterans can be shortened to ‘Vet’ and individuals with disabilities can be shortened to ‘disability’. An example of an acceptable EEO tagline is ‘EOE including disability and vet’.
During an OFCCP compliance review you may be asked to provide a copy of your self-identification forms. If it has been a while since you last reviewed these forms, now would be a good time to check that they are accurate and up to date. The most recent change was made to the Government provided IWD form, so make sure that you are using the one-page form which expires on May 31, 2023. Has it been more than five years since the current workforce was surveyed for IWD status? If so, that re-survey process should be scheduled.
Contractors are required to notify applicants how they can request an accommodation during the application process. The notice, which is typically posted on a career page, must contain contact information such as an email address or phone number, and the name of the contact person or department. Contractors also need to provide a process for employees to request an accommodation or workplace adjustment. These requests must be tracked and should include the nature of the accommodation requested by the employee, the date of the request, the employee’s name or identification number, title, and whether the request was granted or denied.
Additional compliance assistance can be found on OFCCP’s website, or by reaching out to your dedicated Berkshire consultant.