Developing an affirmative action program (AAP) is not an easy task. If you’re part of your company’s plan development process, you know how much work it takes to ensure everything is in order to meet Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs’ (OFCCP) regulations. With that in mind, here are some tips to help make your planning process a little easier.
- Take Advantage of the Best AAP Resources
Berkshire has been a leading AAP resource for federal contractors across the country for over 30 years. Our Affirmative Action training classes teach federal contractors how to effectively manage the plan development process—along with preparing for an audit. Browse our resources or sort by category to find what you’re looking for in our resource center. We offer blogs and a monthly webinar series which allow participants the opportunity to learn from our expert consultants. Stay ahead of the game through our subscription center. Every week, our experts post updates on regulatory changes, webinar announcements, recommendations for best practices -- and more. Berkshire’s tools and resources provide valuable information on AAP regulations, industry best practices, and the latest compliance trends.
- Get an Early Start Gathering Your AAP Data
Gathering data is an essential part in the AAP process. Therefore, it’s important to meet with your HRIS team well before your plan date to discuss the data requirements and develop the data queries for your Human Resource Information and Applicant Tracking Systems. As a best practice, Berkshire recommends starting the data discussion well before your plan date to ensure you have your data ready on, or as close to, your plan date as possible. Communicating with your HRIS team early will ensure you have the right data the first time.
- Build an AAP Support Team
Who are the people in your AAP village? Enlisting support from other groups in your organization will aid in creating an effective AAP. Procurement/Vendor Relations may be able to notify vendors and subcontractors of your AA obligations on your behalf since they have lists of active vendors. Facilities Management/Custodians can ensure that the required postings are current and visible. Finance can assist in determining plan structure and provide the company identification and classification numbers needed for federal reporting. Information Technology can help with data collection, data retention, and inform you of system changes relevant to the data. Payroll can assist in providing pay information for compensation analysis activities or federal/state reporting requirements. Compensation can help with job requirement reviews, EEO Category, and job group assignments. Marketing can incorporate inclusive images/languages and assist in outreach activities by using corporate connections.
- Don’t Let Your AAP Gather Dust!
Now that your plan is finished, don’t let your AAP gather dust! Completing your AAP is only the first step in ensuring that your organization remains compliant. OFCCP has been focusing on how contractors identify problem areas, create action-oriented programs, and assess the effectiveness of their AAP. If you don’t put your AAP into action, then you could put your company at risk. In addition to creating action-oriented programs to address areas of under-representation, conduct a compliance self-audit to identify any problem areas within the company. Then create meaningful action steps to address the problem areas. Report your findings to your leadership team to gain their support in your efforts.
With proper planning and utilization of all your resources, you can simplify the complex but important process of affirmative action program development.