April 2019 Newsletter

BREAKING:  EEO-1 PAY COMPONENT DUE SEPTEMBER 3

Component 1 Due May 31

The EEO-1's controversial Component 2, requiring reporting of pay by EEO-1 codes and salary bands within those categories, has been up in the air for several years now and has been the subject of litigation   This week the judge ruled that the EEOC must collect it by September 30, 2019.  The judge's order also stipulated that EEOC will have to collect a second year of data and has to choose between 2017 or 2019 calendar year data and let the court know by May 3.  The compensation report is supposed to be posted by mid July to give employers the opportunity to file it.  

The deadline to submit Component 1 - the traditional race/gender report remains May 31, 2019.  

The HR Consultant is available to assist clients with their May 2019 EEO-1 submissions and will continue to update clients on developments related to the submission of Component 2 compensation data. 


Are you on the OFCCP’s Corporate Scheduling List?

Contractors and subcontractors need to review the list, as the OFCCP will no longer send individuals CSAL’s through the mail.  Listed contractors should receive notice through e-mail.  

The OFCCP is making fast and furious changes to how it audits federal contractors and subcontractors.  Expect the volume of audits to increase 3 and 5 fold over the coming years. Also, they are asking to make changes to the scheduling letters that include:

  • break downs by ethnic races 

  • adverse impact analysis for veterans

  • disabled in applicant flow/hires.  

We will keep you posted on these developments and share our experiences with the agency as we enter this brave new world.  


There are three kinds of audits - Establishment, 503 FOCUSED review, and Compliance Checks are making a comeback.  

  • The OFCCP is taking comments on the proposed new Scheduling Letters - view them and make your voice known. Comments will be taken until June 11, 2019.   Scheduling Letters Comments

Action Items: 

  • Make sure that your AAP is produced on time and is up to date. 

  • When you receive it, please review all data to assure accuracy. 


OFCCP is INFLEXIBLE with extensions. 
 They are sending show cause notices if you don’t provide your AAP within the 30 day window, even if it traveled around the company for two weeks before it landed on your desk.  


Extensions for support documents have only been granted for 1-2 weeks in our recent experience. 


OFCCP and ODEP Insights for Disability and Inclusion Best Practices

The OFCCP and ODEP (Office of Disability Employment Policy) met this month to discuss disability and inclusion.  Citing the low labor participation rate for individuals with disabilities compared to the general population and the large disability wage gap, Director Leen (ODEP) confirmed there will be Section 503 Focused Reviews in every OFCCP CSAL list moving forward.

To prepare for a Section 503 Focused Review, contractors should visit the OFCCP’s Section 503 Resource page as well as engage with ODEP to put into place best practices.

Review:  Section 503 Resource page

ODEP:  Best Practices

Action Item:  

As far as outreach goes, emphasis should be placed on disability recruitment - this is a focus area for the agency and has bipartisan support. 

Added bonus: Many of our clients are struggling with the low unemployment rate and ability to attract and retain quality candidates.  Tapping into “differently abled” communities can be a win-win. 


Sexual Harassment charges up 13%

There has been a significant impact of the #MeToo movement in the number of sexual harassment and retaliation charges filed with the agency.   Interestingly, overall charges went down from 84,000 in 2017 to 76,000 in 2018.  But sexual harassment charges were up 13%

Retaliation was again the type of discrimination charge most frequently filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in fiscal year 2018, with 50% of total charges.  


Combatting all forms of workplace harassment remains a top priority of the EEOC.

 Action Items:

  • Review and update all sexual harassment policies 

  • Assure employees are made aware of these policies

  • Conduct in person training for managers and employees

  • All allegations of harassment are promptly investigated

  • Steps are taken to assure no retaliation is taking place

Learn more about the EEOC best practices and initiatives to prevent workplace harassment; significantly EEOC has found that on-line training is not effective in this space:  Best Practices

The HR Consultant Services include Respectful Work Environment Training and Third Party Investigations.  Read more about these services on our website:  https://www.thehrconsultant.com/services


April Update:

EEOC Announces Pay Data Collection Plans: 2017 and 2018 Data will be collected by September 30

Component 2 Pay Reporting drama continues!  

Barring any kind of appeal, EEOC plans to open the portal mid July so that employers can submit pay data for 2018 as well as 2017. We have not yet seen pay data reporting instructions but will stay on top of it. The grids will have salary bands for counts within EEO-1 categories and within those bands by race/gender. There are a lot of unanswered questions about this reporting with a government agency that is not known for moving fast, especially at a time when top leadership isn’t in place.  So stay tuned.  

Filing deadline for Component 1 remains May 31…the EEOC will only allow a two week extension (vs. a month) for this report and it must be requested on their website:  EEO-1 Survey

March 2019 Newsletter

BREAKING NEWS: Judge Vacates Stay of EEO-1 Pay Data Reporting Tool

The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has found the government did not have proper justification to stay implementation of the EEOC’s pay data collection tool.  As a result, the court has vacated the 2017 stay and ordered the previous approval of the revised EEO-1 form shall be in effect.

As a reminder:  EEOC has extended the filing deadline by two months.  The new deadline by which to file is May 31, 2019.


The pay collection tool has NOT been added to the 2018 filing. We expect that the pay collection issue will continue to evolve. Without an EEOC Commissioner or Chief Counsel confirmed/appointed yet, we do not know what the implications will be.  For now, file EEO-1 as usual and we’ll keep you updated.  


ACTION ITEM: Reviewing compensation equity in your organization is always a proactive measure. 


NEW!  Struggling with disability outreach requirements? 

Check out the OFFCCP Section 3 Landing Page developed in advance of focused disability reviews

The landing page is intended to provide contractors with helpful information and assistance in implementing best practices and increasing the employment of individuals with disabilities. 

So what does this mean for you?  OFCCP's new Section 503 landing page will serve as a resource center for contractors. You can find:

Disability Inclusion best practicesDocuments explaining what to expect during a Focused ReviewImportant OFCCP contact informationSample of the Focused Review Scheduling LetterFAQ’s

Click Here to Visit OFCCP's Section 503 Landing Page


Compliance Assistance for Upcoming Section 503 Focused Reviews

The OFCCP has announced new resources to assist with the upcoming round of Focused Reviews aimed at compliance with Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act for individuals with disabilities. The first round of Section 503 Focused Reviews will take place at contractors’ corporate headquarters locations. 

The OFCCP is affording contractors an opportunity to obtain compliance assistance and otherwise get ready to receive actual audit scheduling letters beginning approximately 45 days later.  Not all contractors will be selected immediately; each district office has discretion to decide how many scheduling letters to issue and when to issue them.  Some contractors could be scheduled as early as May; others later.

 This is the letter that will begin a Focused Section 503 Review: Focused Review Letter

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers page: Q & A 

There is also a Best Practices page:  Best Practices

The OFCCP will not be looking at personnel activity data (hires, applicants, promotions, terminations) or pay data during these Section 503 Focused Reviews. Contractors will not have to submit that data initially, but OFCCP is leaving itself the option to review the data as part of the audit.


Free Webinar March 25th 12-1pm: Disability:IN Central Texas presents JAN - Creating Inclusive Workplaces

This seminar will provide some great information and can be part of your good faith efforts towards disability inclusion.  

Louis Orslene, Job Accommodations Network (JAN) - Tools, Techniques, and Technologies for Creating Inclusive Workplaces: 1 HRCI credit

Gain access to tools and techniques included within the JAN Workplace Accommodation Toolkit featuring JAN’s deep knowledge in an online platform.Obtain information needed to create inclusive workplaces while complying with disability-related employment laws. Learn of inclusionary technologies such as the Mobile Accommodation Solution App, a first-generation mobile workplace accommodation case management app.

Sign up here:  Seminar Signup


CSALs will no longer be mailed, instead will be posted on the OFCCP website.

 

CSALs let you know which facilities are scheduled for audit in the upcoming year.

OFCCP has announced that it would release the next round of CSALs in the second half of March on its website with actual scheduling letters to follow by mail beginning 15 days later.   

Check the List!


Spotlight on Service: Affirmative Action Planning

The OFCCP’s new leadership is extremely inflexible with deadlines when audited.  

If audit materials are not turned in within the 30 days, they can and ARE issuing show cause notices.  No one wants to get on the wrong footing at the start of an audit.

 

Let our team help you put your Affirmative Action plan together in a compliant and expedient manner. Our skilled consultants have years of experience in the field and understand the impact of your data as it relates to an audit. 

We provide FREE audit assistance as part of our plan preparation. Call for quote.

February 2019 Newsletter

EEO-1 Filing Extended to May 31, 2019

Due to the partial government shutdown, the 2018 EEO-1 filing portal will open “in early March” for filing of 2018 reports.  As a result of the delayed opening, EEOC has extended the filing deadline by two months.  

Reminder, passwords are changed each year. If you have changed your certifying official or had a merger/acquisition/divestiture, there are steps you must take prior to filing your report.  

EEO-1 Filing Portal


As a reminder, we can assist you with EEO-1 filing. Email or call for quote: info@thehrconsultant.com. 817-887-8009

Focused Review Update: 

OFCCP to look at Disabled and Vets compliance

Last August, the OFCCP issued a new Directive (DIR 2018-04), stating it would conduct “Focused Reviews” that centered on compliance with AAP requirements under Section 503 (Individuals with Disabilities) and VEVRAA (Veterans).

The next round of CSALs, approximately 500, will include notices for these more limited Focused Reviews under Section 503. 


There is a revised Scheduling Letter for Focused Reviewswhich is just a pared down version of the previous form for your review.  

ACTION ITEM:  Continue to work on your outreach program for Vets and Disabled! 



Our founder, Terri Swain, will be speaking at the EEOC's Technical Assistance Program on August 7th in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.

Mark your calendars....more details to come!

January 2019 Newsletter

OFCCP is Open During Shutdown

During the government shut down, OFCCP is open (was funded prior to shut down) and EEOC is closed.  If you have an open EEOC charge, adhere to deadlines but don’t expect to talk to anyone at the agency.

OFCCP recently moved Acting Director Craig Leen to Director of the Agency.  He has been making many fast and furious changes. You can read all about them here:

Read More

Joint Employment and Federal Contractors

Joint employment, and the issues it brings, has been around for a while. But with the NLRB decision last year in Browning Ferris II, the scope of what it means to be a joint employer has broadened. And while there is no regulation spelling out this new standard, the DOL and OFCCP are jumping on board.

Read More

Key Changes to OFCCP Scheduling Letter

Audit requests in 2015 will look different and ask for more information, as the scheduling letter has changed. Learn about he key changes in our blog post, or reach out to our team for more information!

Read More

Top Three Employee Errors in the Workplace

Sure, our employers make plenty of mistakes.  Our bosses can be demanding, insensitive, and provide plenty of happy hour ranting material.  But individual employees also can add fuel to the workplace fire. Here are our top picks of situations that make work life crazier than it needs to be and some suggested guidance.

Read More

6 Internal Investigation Mistakes

As a former EEOC investigator, gone corporate then gone consultant…I’ve reviewed my share of internal discrimination investigations. Some are impressive, some are epic and well, others shouldn’t have bothered. Here’s our dirty half- dozen mistakes:

Read More

10 things to do NOW to stay compliant with OFCCP regs

The OFCCP is chaging and agressively reviewing your employment practices. The Best Defense Is Always A Good Offense. Make sure you are on top of your Compliance Documents and read our top 10 things to do now in order to stay compliant with OFCCP regulations.

Read More

2011 OFCCP review

WOW! 2012 was an interesting year on the OFCCP front. Take a look at our latest blog post to see what we experienced and what to expect in 2012.

Read More

Addressing the 13%

The US Department of Labor states that the unemployment rate for the disabled is 13% – 1.5x the rate of those without disabilities. In order to address that high rate, the OFCCP is proposing a 7% disability hiring goal for Affirmative Action employers – strengthening the Rehabilitation Act.

Read More

The best defense is a good offense

In football and human resources (still hurting from that Cowboys loss last night!), having an offensive strategy is imperative, particularly in the compliance area.  Many companies receive their affirmative action plans, give them a quick glance then stick them on a shelf just praying that this is a year they won’t be audited.

Read More

The Times They are A Changing

The shift in policies of the Department of Labor under Hilda Solis’s leadership has finally trickled down into the Office of Federal Contract Compliance (OFCCP). As a result, there will be less compliance reviews but those scheduled will be rigorous and more on-sites will be held. Click inside to learn more.

Read More

I took a Louisville Slugger to both headlights….

Retaliation.It’s funny in a country song, but in the workplace…it can mean serious trouble. The EEOC reports that in 2010, that for the first time in its history, Retaliation Charges were the most filed EEOC charge – representing 36.3% of all charges filed – that’s greater than 1 in 3!!!

Read More

And the Sign said, Long Haired Freaky People Need Not Apply…

You’d be hard pressed to find a sign like that out today. Or advertisements seeking “Help Wanted Male” “Help Wanted Female,”  or signs telling someone to use the back door.  We’ve come a long way from those early contentious days of the Civil Rights Act, but are we there yet?

Read More

I love the way you lie…

Well, not really.  But you know all of those “he said/she said” situations HR folks are faced with…how in the world do you ever get to the truth? Did you know that EEOC investigators are trained to make credibility assessments?  And if they can do it, you can too.

Read More

She’s a pink warrior…

Yes, that is me wearing the Pink Survivor shirt. Most people who know me away from work know that I am a 9 year breast cancer survivor and my volunteer passion is with Susan G. Komen for the Cure.  But a lot of my clients had no idea I went through a year of breast cancer treatment.

Read More