Starting May 2006, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has been enforcing a monumental ruling that set specific regulations on the collection, storage and reporting of Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) data for Internet applicants. It also defines Internet applicants, identifies electronic data collection methods, creates basic qualification standards and establishes record keeping requirements for compliance.
Though OFCCP regulations are made to specifically regulate companies with federal contracts, every employer must take steps to get rid of hiring discrimination. It is no longer enough to simply consult an attorney (which should be the first step). These days, where applicants can easily apply to hundreds of jobs with a couple clicks of the mouse and each position attracts hundreds of candidates, using a spreadsheet to keep track of all this data is possible, maybe. However ensuring its accuracy or gathering any insight from this information is impossible. In any case, manually tracking this information has become increasingly burdensome and maintaining the integrity of this data has been plagued by human transcription error as the amount of recruiting data continues to increase.
To help guarantee that your company continues to be compliant with these government regulations, your organization should be tracking, storing, and analyzing all hiring information with a solution that can handle great amounts of data while reducing time spent transcribing from one form to another. In essence, this solution must have 4 crucial features: ask every potential employee to give their EEO information, capture legitimate reasons why your staff has chosen NOT to hire someone (every time), constantly evaluate this information in real-time and be able to generate reports that can be used for compliance reporting.
Here’s the good news, in choosing the right recruiting software vendor it has never been easier to track the information needed to help keep your company in compliance and possibly even reduce hiring discrimination. But be careful. Shop around, ask the right questions and make sure the vendor understands the regulations as most have incomplete applications that cause holes in the program.
So, what should you be looking for in an applicant tracking software vendor? Here is a list of some things you need to consider. Make sure you not only ask the right questions but take the time to see the features in action, so you really get an understanding of how everything really works. This is important stuff; give it the attention it deserves.
Request EEO information for every job on your careers page. Most applicant tracking systems will include a feature that asks voluntary EEO information from all applicants during the online application process. If not, don’t buy it. A good looking, fully-branded careers site that shows your EEO disclaimer and asks for voluntary EEO/AA information should easy to set up and manage without help from IT.
Automatically secure “reasons for non-selection” for every applicant. OFCCP regulations require employers to give a reason for non-selection for every candidate they receive. When researching recruiting software, you must determine how it will capture these reasons. This information is extremely important and many older applicant tracking systems do not have a way of capturing this data and those that do often require your employees to enter it manually. You should choose a system that allows every employee in your company to easily, accurately and automatically capture pre-selected reasons for non-selection without creating extra work during your recruiting process.
Ask minimum qualification questions for every job. This is best accomplished during the online application process. When an applicant does not meet these requirements, the government no longer requires you to track them as an applicant. Select recruiting software that permits you to automate this process ensures that you will only review the applicants that are qualified for your jobs. This software should also store each applicant’s minimum qualification answers with their record and allow you to remove candidates of this type from your logs.
Create applicant flow logs automatically for any position. Every federal contractor must create applicant flow logs that record the information required by OFCCP regulations for conducting an adverse impact analysis. If a system has already tracked the relevant information that makes up the flow log (name, position, race and sex, veteran status, reason for non-selection, etc) creating a report should be easy. Preferably your recruiting technology will allow you to export applicant flow logs into the same form that you will send to the OFCCP.
Create Hire/Offer Logs instantly. The reason for this is report is to record each hire or offer made by your company during a reporting period to be analyzed as part of your affirmative action plan. Again, you should select software that automatically tracks the necessary information to satisfy the OFCCP’s requirements. Creating a report should take just one or two clicks and the ability to export the report to Excel.
Review your EEO statistics at anytime from an online dashboard. This way, it is now up to you to monitor and regularly audit your EEO/AA data. This proactive approach can prevent costly litigation. Purchasing recruiting software that allows you to view EEO data online and generate custom reports is vital and is a good way to take preventative action against risks. Having access to all your EEO/AA data confirms that your company is indeed an equal opportunity employer.
You would probably expect that recruiting software that will capture, track and report EEO/OFCCP data automatically would be expensive and hard to implement. However, thanks to new business models, there is now technology available that can be set up in a matter of days and will only cost a few hundred dollars per month. Compare this to the cost of a discrimination lawsuit and it becomes a very easy decision. So, get educated, understand what you need to track, do the demos and choose modern recruiting software that can make your OFCCP headache into just one more thing you have under control.