The OFCCP stands for the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, an agency of the U.S. Department of Labor.
If you are unsure whether your company is subject to OFCCP standards, generally speaking, a company is a contractor and is covered by EEO laws enforced by the OFCCP if it enters into a non-exempt contract or subcontract with any department, agency, establishment or instrumentality of the executive branch of the Federal government for the purchase, sale or use of supplies or services.
The OFCCP has recently become more aggressive when it comes to compliance enforcement. Recent enforcement enhancements include:
- Increase compliance evaluations and complaint investigations by approximately 20%.
- Elimination of the cap on compliance reviews which up until now, was 25 facilities of a business per year.
- Hiring over 200 additional compliance officers and other enforcement personnel.
Specifically, the focus of this increase in enforcement is related to the outreach and recruitment of individuals with disabilities under Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (as amended) and covered veterans including vets with service-related disabilities which falls under the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974 (VEVRAA).
While the agency will consider good faith efforts, if the contractor is not successful in recruiting people with disabilities, they will want to know why, making it clear that this is not just about “checking the box”. They are looking for evidence of the outreach along with measurable results as a result of the outreach.
Acceptable outreach may include:
- Formal communication with college placement offices and even better, direct communication with the college’s office of disability student services.
- Appropriate depiction of individuals with disabilities in contractor marketing materials.
The OFCCP may also want to review a company’s processes to increase self-identification such as a review of the invitation for self-identification including how the invitations are extended and what efforts are made if any to increase the likelihood that applicants would complete the invitation.
Keep in mind, that the OFCCP may also investigate internal mechanisms for informing applicants and employees of their contractors’ OFCCP related obligations and at any time, applicants and employees with disabilities may be interviewed and asked if they are aware of their rights under the contractors Affirmative Action Plan(AAP) and if so, if they have ever exercised their rights. At any time, the agency may request other information such as:
All position descriptions to check whether physical or mental job requirements are included.
Copies of all disability related grievances
List of all known employees who have a disability.
Copies of information provided to applicants concerning reasonable accommodations.
A contractor’s website accessibility and compatibility with the most common assistive technology software.
Avenues for applicants and employees to request accommodations
To learn about best practices relative to OFCCP compliance and beyond, contact Springboard Consulting LLC at 973-813-7260 x102 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.