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Know The Rules!

Latest OFCCP DevelopmentsWith the release of the July 2013 Federal Contract Compliance Manual this week, (the definitive instruction and guide book for Compliance Officers of the OFCCP), we can be somewhat certain that soon the OFCCP will be releasing the updated regulations for compliance that we have all been so patiently waiting for.

Employee Placement Goals, as defined by the Code of Federal Regulations: Chapter 60 2.16

Placement goals serve as objectives or targets reasonably attainable by means of applying every GFE (Good Faith Effort) to make all aspects of the entire affirmative action program work. Placement goals are also used to measure progress toward achieving equal employment opportunity.

Action Oriented Programs, as defined by the Code of Federal Regulations: Chapter 60 2.17 C

The contractor must develop and execute action-oriented programs designed to correct any problem areas identified and to attain established goals and objectives. In order for these action-oriented programs to be effective, the contractor must ensure that they consist of more than following the same procedures which have previously produced inadequate results. Furthermore, a contractor must demonstrate that it has made "good faith efforts" to remove identified barriers, expand employment opportunities, and produce measurable results.

Good-Faith Efforts, as defined by Federal Contract Compliance manual.

This term refers to a contractor's appropriate efforts to meet its goals by removing identified barriers, expanding employment opportunities, and producing measurable results

One of the ways that all of the above will be measured moving forward is going to be a company’s commitment to the community that it serves. This commitment will be made evident through the vehicles that a company uses for its commitment to Diversity & Inclusion, Minority Recruitment and its Community Outreach. The option mentioned above has been and still is one of the "best practices for Good Faith Efforts", as defined by the OFCCP.

As someone that has been helping to keep his clients compliant with Department of Labor and OFFCP rules and regulations for years, I can tell you with confidence that in this case when a government agency budgets for more action, and tells you that it will be spending more time in the field than ever before. They will be looking over more shoulders. For FY 2014, the OFCCP plans to complete 4,650 new compliance evaluations. (Taken from the FY 2014 Congressional Budget Justification Report).

So now that you have been given the facts, let’s take a minute and view some simple solutions that will allow you to be proactive and not let the government be punitive.

  1. First make yourself aware of opportunities that can and do qualify as “Best Practices” when considering good faith efforts.
  2. Use resources that are capable of being more than just one piece of your Minority Recruitment plan. Such as combining Diversity & Inclusion with Minority Recruitment and community outreach. In doing so you will greatly increase the company’s ROI when it comes to recruitment advertising.
  3. Only use recognized and OFCCP audit accepted resources for your good faith efforts. Take advantage of established vehicle(s) that can accommodate the company’s goals while contributing to your good faith efforts this will avoid questions or possible non-recognition by the CO (compliance officer) and the OFCCP.
  4. Use specifically targeted minority resources to profess your company’s commitment to community outreach to assist in your good faith efforts.
  5. Do not get caught by using compliance by association.* Keep in mind that YOU have to create your own relationship with a vendor in order to have your efforts be considered good faith efforts.

By keeping these fairly simple guidelines handy you will not only make a difference in the way you recruit minorities, you will also make a difference in your company’s best practices for Diversity & Inclusion.

*Compliance by association: When a company places a job posting with one company that has partnered with another company that reaches into a specific minority talent pool without creating their own direct or fiduciary relationship with that company capable of reaching into the specifically targeted minority talent pool. This is not an acceptable form of compliance.

About the Author

Mark Cohen has been working since 1995 to promote diversity and equality in the workplace through minority recruitment and community outreach. In his position as Executive VP and Director of New Business Development at Equality Magazines.com Mark has become a recognized authority on minority recruitment and OFCCP compliance.

A Diversity partner of Direct Employers Association, Equality Magazines through its Targeted Diversity and Minority Recruitment and Compliance vehicles specializing in Diversity & Inclusion is one such resource.

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