OFCCP Announces Upcoming Webinar on VEVRAA and Section 503 Updates

OFCCP Webinar

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has announced a free webinar to clarify revisions made to the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act (VEVRAA) and Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act. This is a fantastic opportunity for new and small Federal contractors/subcontractors to gain a better understanding of the new requirements under the final rulings.

  • Webinar Topic: VEVRAA and Section 503 Updates
  • Date: Tuesday, June 17th, 2014
  • Time: 2:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (New York, GMT-4:00)
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Cost: Free!

By attending this webinar, you will have the chance to:

  • Learn how the regulations have changed
  • Understand your requirements as a contractor/subcontractor under VEVRAA and Section 503
  • Ask the OFCCP any questions you have about VEVRAA and Section 503

Register now through the link below!

Registration:
https://dolevents.webex.com/dolevents/onstage/g.php?MTID=e7e7c928b2fc5bc171b9be86beac097fb

AAAA Conference Update & Understanding Basic Qualifications in Light of New 503 and VEVRAA Regulations

OFCCP Director Pat Shiu Addresses a Full-house at the AAAA Conference

OFCCP Director Pat Shiu Addresses a Full-house at the AAAA Conference

OFCCP Director Pat Shiu spoke at the *AAAA (American Association of Affirmative Action) 40th Annual Conference last week. She reiterated being a Federal contractor is a privilege, not a right, and underscored the requirements associated with that right focusing on the OFCCP’s initiative to reduce compensation disparity. She also took time to address Federal contractor concerns regarding the new 503 and VEVRAA regulations. This year’s conference was held in Nashville, TN at the Gaylord Opryland hotel June 4-6.

BCG Principal Consultant Dr. Jim Kuthy and Consultant Heather Patchell, attended the conference and spoke Thursday on Understanding Basic Qualifications in Light of New 503 and VEVRAA Regulations.

Here are a few key points from the Basic Qualifications presentation:

The final regulations reiterate the standard for Basic Qualifications (BQs); BQs must be “job-related and consistent with business necessity.” Federal contractor’s will be required to “periodically” review all physical and mental qualifications (with changes to reference protected veterans and VEVRAA). This requirement, plus the requirement to review personnel processes, is why contractors absolutely need to update their ADA compliant job analyses. A schedule of the review must be included within the AAP. It is important to note that employers cannot use BQs to screen out applicants if the BQ is related to an essential function that could be solved and/or satisfied with a reasonable accommodation.

Good news folks! Everything doesn’t need to be done at once; focus on the high-volume positions with lots of turnover/hiring! Just like any other practice, procedure, or test, BQs must be evaluated for adverse impact. But here’s your major take-away point: to the extent any physical and/or mental qualification tends to screen out individuals with a disability, the contractor must ensure that qualification is “job-related for the position in question and consistent with business necessity” (i.e., valid).

If you have  questions regarding compensation disparity, the new Section 503 and VEVRAA regulations, job analyses, or basic qualifications, let us know. We can help.

Upcoming BCGi Webinar:

IRegister Here!f you were unable to attend the Understanding Basic Qualifications in Light of New 503 and VEVRAA Regulations conference presentation, it’s not too late. Jim Kuthy and Heather Patchell will share the same content in an upcoming BCGi webinar on July 10, 2014!

Visit www.bcginstitute.org/event/bqs-vevraa-503-webinar now.


*The AAAA is now called the AAAED – American Association of Access Equity and Diversity.

VEVRAA and Section 503 News from SWARM

After a windy week in Denver, CO,  the SWARM (South West And Rocky Mountain) Regional ILG Conference has adjourned.  This popular conference brought together Human Resource professionals from all over the country to learn and discuss the developments in Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity. One of the big ticket items on everyone’s mind was the implementation of the VEVRAA and Section 503 final rulings that went into effect on March 24, 2014.

Melissa Speer, a top OFCCP official and SWARM’s Regional Director, led an open forum to further understanding of the VEVRAA and Section 503 changes. She discussed the rescission of 41 CFR Part 60-250.  This rescission eliminated the Vets 100 filing requirement (Vets 100A is still required), changed the definition of ‘protected veteran,’ removed ‘other protected,’ and added ‘active duty wartime or campaign badge veteran.’ The regulations also require Federal Contractors to collect additional data elements (Subpart C) for both veterans and those with disabilities. The audience pressed Ms. Speer to elaborate on the OFCCP’s data collection expectations of Federal Contractors under audit and was dismayed by the lack of direction provided.  Ms. Speer continued to redirect contractors to focus on outreach and recruitment and measuring effectiveness in gaining the most qualified individuals within their workforce. She was also quick to remind everyone that “contractors have the obligation to create an annual written review of how well each outreach and recruitment effort is performing.”

In other presentations, prominent labor lawyers provided further insight regarding industry best practices for implementing the new requirements. Take-a-ways include:

  • Utilize the ‘Disability and Veterans Community Resources Directory’ found on the OFCCP website (http://www.dol-esa.gov/errd/resources.html) to identify local organizations that can assist with ‘training, recruiting, and hiring veterans and individuals with disabilities.’
  • As a way to maximize the effectiveness of partner relationships, make it easy for candidates to identify the referral source; list specific partner agencies at the top of the ‘referral source’ drop down box within the online application system.
  • Regulations stipulate that annual training must be provided to Hiring Managers.  However, providing training to the entire organization values inclusion, and brings acceptability and open acknowledgement of disabilities.
  • Ensure internal system and processes are easily accessible to anyone who wants to apply.  Is assistive technology in place to help candidates with a disability to view online applications? Some examples of assistive technology include screen readers, magnification software, and voice activation software.

The most valuable take-a-way from this year’s conference was the reminder that the OFCCP is in transition. The OFCCP considers a contractor’s first AAP(s) developed after March 24, 2014 as a transitionary AAP.  It is unclear how the implementation of the regulations will be carried out by the OFCCP in desk audit evaluations, but we are certain things will unfold after Subpart C is incorporated into OFCCP compliance evaluations.

It was a great week at the 2014 SWARM Conference. Our team not only gained valuable information to share but also enjoyed connecting with clients and colleagues in the industry. If you have any questions about implementing VEVRAA and Section 503 final rulings, please reach out to us.