When you work with the government, compliance always takes center stage. Landing a big government contract only to learn that you failed with OFCCP compliance is a nightmare for any business.
While there isn't anything complicated about OFCCP compliance, many companies don't pay enough attention to the government's hiring requirements. Your business may already be compliant when dealing with existing employees. However, without the right approach to new talent acquisition, you could face compliance issues.
Let's take a closer look at what OFCCP is all about and how to make sure you stay compliant.
What Is OFCCP Compliance?
OFCCP compliance is following the government's requirements for protecting workers, promoting diversity, and battling discrimination for contractors and subcontractors.
The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) is aimed at ensuring that businesses with federal government contracts don't discriminate and take affirmative action in hiring.
In short, OFCCP protects the employment rights of job applicants and employees of federal contractors.
To stay compliant, contractors need to abide by the following laws:
- Executive Order 11246 – Equal Employment Opportunity
- Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
- The Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974 (VEVRAA)
All federal contractors must follow the above basic non-discrimination and equal opportunity requirements.
However, if your business has:
- A contract of at least $50,000 or more for Executive Order 11246 and Section 503 + at least 50 employees,
- A contract of at least $150,000 for VEVRAA + at least 50 employees,
you should have a written affirmative action program (AAP). Federal contractors need to create a separate written program for each law that their contract size and employee numbers apply to.
Employees and job applicants have the right to file a complaint with OFCCP against the contractor for discrimination.
Why Does OFCCP Compliance Matter for Government Contractors?
Promoting diversity, taking affirmative action, and avoiding discrimination should be on every company's agenda. In most cases, businesses already follow some of the rules enforced by OFCCP.
While striving to abide by these regulations is something many companies do voluntarily, government contractors are required to do it to avoid penalties.
Streamline the Recruitment Process
OFCCP compliance begins with a proper recruitment process. Today, contractors must be proactive and recruit from a diverse talent pool.
OFFCP requires federal contractors to document:
- The number of applicants that identify themselves as people with disabilities.
- The total number of job opportunities.
- Positions filled.
- Candidates for all jobs.
- Hired applicants with disabilities
- Total candidates hired.
You also must:
- Notify the job applicants that they will not be discriminated against based on race, gender, disability, and veteran status.
- Keep records for three years if you outsource the recruiting process (and for two if you don't).
- Make sure third-party recruiters are OFCCP compliant.
- Avoid disciplining or firing employees or job seekers who discuss their or coworkers' pay.
- Prove that you are actively working with state career sites and posting jobs.
Implementing the required actions at the recruitment stage can help you avoid problems in the future.
Passing Audits and Avoiding Penalties
If your business isn't OFCCP compliant, you may lose big contracts and hinder your reputation.
Each year, the U.S. Department of Labor selects a number of federal contractors and evaluates them for compliance with OFCCP requirements. Two types of audits exist:
- A desk audit — a company needs to provide the necessary documents that confirm their compliance.
- An on-site review — if a company fails the desk audit, OFCCP conducts an in-depth on-site review.
Failing an OFCCP audit could result in the following penalties:
- Fines that range from several thousand to millions of dollars. They usually must be paid within 30 days or less.
- The demand to implement certain guidelines or practices within a given period to fix problems revealed during the audit.
- Payments to all job applicants and employees that were affected by record-keeping or AAP violations.
To make sure you are always prepared to pass the desk audit, you need to improve your hiring process, follow the rules, and keep all documents in order.
Simplify OFCCP Compliance with GovСonPay
In the GovCon sector, companies must pay special attention to recruiting, hiring, and onboarding employees to fill employment opportunities with top talent while remaining OFCCP compliant.
GovConPay's platform allows you to recruit, track, and onboard applicants while maintaining OFCCP compliance. A robust set of tools is designed specifically to make sure that government contractors pass OFCCP audits with flying colors.
Here is how:
- Organize the hiring process — keeps all the information about hires centralized, helping you make important decisions while staying compliant.
- Attract better candidates — helps you find candidates that meet all OFCCP requirements while being the best fit for the job.
- Reduce time to hire — allows you to manage recruitment and acquisition without wasting time on manual searches and data entering.
- Improve the applicant experience — helps potential employees feel welcome and cared for by streamlining the hiring and onboarding processes.
- Decrease cost per hire — cuts hiring costs by improving hiring organization and keeping your HR experts focused on core tasks.
- Post to hundreds of job boards with one click — allows you to post jobs actively in order to meet OFCCP requirements.
GovConPay's talent acquisition tools are aimed at improving your hiring process while keeping OFCCP demands in mind.
Staying Compliant with OFCCP Requirements
Government contractors need to navigate the compliance maze carefully. Designed to ensure equal opportunity employment, the OFCCP program is strict with its requirements. To pass OFCCP audits, avoid penalties, and continue landing government contracts, businesses need to pay special attention to proper talent acquisition.
To help federal contractors stay on top of their hiring game, GovConPay developed a robust talent acquisition platform. It allows you to track, recruit, and onboard top talent while maintaining OFCCP compliance.
If you'd like to learn more about GovConPay's platform and how it can help you stay OFCCP compliant, please contact our team at any convenient time.