The 34th Annual Conference for the National Industry Liaison Group was held August 2-5, 2016 in Charlotte, NC. This conference brings together members of the federal contractor community, including practitioners, employers, and OFCCP/EEOC officials. The main focus on this year’s conference was around compensation equity in light of proposed changes to the EEO-1 report, enforcement activity priorities, the socio-political climate, and the abundance of state equal pay laws being passed. One of the most intriguing sessions was presented by EEOC Commissioner Victoria Lipnic, who did not advocate or vote for the increased burdens represented by the new pay addition to the EEO-1 report. Commissioner Lipnic did not believe that the proposed regulations would cause significant change on the gender wage gap. She noted that the benefits of pay data collection in the format prescribed by the EEO-1 report were outweighed by the burden the data collection placed on contractors.
DCI Consulting Group staff members were well represented in a number of high profile presentations and also attended a variety of other sessions. Notable session summaries and highlights can be found below.
Things You Didn't Think Were a Selection Test: Practical Selection for Federal Contractors
This session clarified what types of employment procedures are considered "tests" and provided practical guidelines to create valid selection tools and procedures. The audience left the session with a firm understanding of what constitutes a selection test, strategies for creating successful tests, as well as practical implementation take-aways.
Presenters: Joanna Colosimo (DCI Consulting Group), Laura Fields (Wells Fargo), Shannon Kobus (Monster Gov't Solutions), Kristen Pryor (ICF)
Update on Contemporary OFCCP Enforcement: A View from 2015 Settlement Data
In a typical year OFCCP conducts around 4,000 compliance evaluations that result in tens of millions of dollars in back pay and benefits for tens of thousands of American workers. However, these summary data describe only a small part of the agency's overall enforcement picture. Each year a FOIA request is submitted to obtain all OFCCP settlements and a review is done on every OFCCP settlement. This presentation detailed the results of FY 2015 data and trends over time.
Presenter: David B. Cohen (DCI Consulting)
It WAS All About the Base (Pay)
Pay analyses that are "all about the base" may fail to uncover issues that are increasingly on OFCCP's radar. Contractors are asked to submit factors beyond base pay, such as bonus, incentive, and overtime. Contractors are also encountering frequent requests for compensation interviews and must consider strategies for analyzing compensation and communicating with OFCCP. This panel discussed recent trends, common pitfalls and best practices from the legal, researcher and practitioner perspective.
Compensation, Compensation, Compensation: How to Survive an OFCCP Compliance Evaluation
A panel of compensation experts discussed the OFCCP's approach to compensation as well as the impact these changes are now having on compliance audits. "The Davids" discussed their experience in OFCCP compliance evaluations and their recommendations to clients. The presentation was fast- paced, practical and fun. The presentation had both legal and practical aspects and provided the participants with valuable takeaways to use after the conference.
We Might be Paid Differently, But Are Our Jobs Really the Same?
Determining which jobs are similar enough to group in a pay equity study is an important, and often contentious, part of proactive analyses and OFCCP audits. Furthermore, laws such as the California Fair Pay Act have made the determination of "similarly situated" or "substantially similar" even more important. This presentation reviewed case law and job analysis methods to provide guidance on how to determine if jobs are similar enough to combined or compared.
By Joanna Colosimo, Associate Principal Consultant, and Kayo Sady, Senior Consultant, at DCI Consulting Group