How to guide your company through OFCCP compliance

The OFCCP’s increased aggressive enforcement means the company has a greater likelihood of facing an audit and potentially facing a violation

In-house counsel at companies with federal contracts or subcontracts must ensure that their organizations are in compliance with new requirements from the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP). Compliance with OFCCP regulations is necessary where the company has a federal contract in the amount of $50,000 or more (or a subcontract performing work necessary for the performance of a federal contract) and when a company has 50 employees. Financial institutions covered by FDIC are also required to comply.

In addition to the affirmative action requirements for race and gender imposed by Executive Order 11246, covered companies must comply with disabilities and veterans outreach and data collection requirements. Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment and Assistance Act (VEVRAA) require federal contractors to take affirmative action to recruit, employ, and promote individuals with disabilities as well as protected veterans. For years, Section 503 and VEVRAA required only that a company ask new employees, at the post-offer stage, if they wanted to identify themselves as disabled or as a veteran, file a VETS-100 Report (if the company had contracts in the amount of $100,000 or more), and create “boilerplate” affirmative action programs that included a description of the company’s outreach efforts in these categories.

What are the requirements for veterans’ data?

Although the OFCCP provided guidance for contractors in the appendix to the new VEVRAA regulations, it did not create an actual form that contractors must use to collect the protected veterans’ data. Instead, contractors should modify their current voluntary self-ID forms that collect race and gender data to incorporate the new veterans categories and the new data collection requirements. These requirements are distinctly different from the Section 503 requirements.

Contributing Author

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Cheryl L. Behymer

Cheryl Behymer is a partner and co-chair of the Affirmative Action and Federal Contract Compliance Practice Group at Fisher & Phillips LLP, a management-side labor...

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