Are you familiar with the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, the laws it is responsible for and its federal contractor requirements? If your business has contracts with the federal government or you hope to become a federal contractor, you need to know what human resource laws and regulations you must follow. The following also apply to subcontractors of federal contractors.
I recommend you check out the OFCCP website at www.dol.gov/ofccp before you submit a bid or immediately after you have been awarded a bid. You should review your regulatory compliance and ensure you follow the requirements of this agency.
The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs is responsible for ensuring that businesses with federal contracts of at least $10,000 do not discriminate and that they follow affirmative action laws in hiring.
Federal contractors are also required to take affirmative action to hire and promote qualified veterans. You must also file a Vets 100 report, which reflects your hiring statistics, if you received a federal contract of $25,000 or more before Dec. 1, 2003, or if you received a federal contract of $100,000 or more after Dec. 1, 2003.
If you receive a federal contract, there are more laws that pertain to wages and benefits you need to be aware of. Make sure you follow the applicable laws of your contract because you want to pay employees appropriately before you begin the work.
There may be overlap between some of the wage and hour laws, so I strongly suggest you talk to your CPA, attorney or human resources professional before you begin a project.
Federal contractors were required as of September 2009 to begin using E-Verify to electronically verify the employment eligibility of their workforce. This falls under Executive Order 12989. The service is free and allows you to electronically confirm an employee’s legal working status.
If you are a federal contractor you must post the following posters in your break room or other location where employees will see them.
As you can tell, doing business with the federal government requires the employer to comply with many laws and regulations. Your business needs to implement an affirmative action plan, if required. Post your job openings with the appropriate state agency. Document your recruitment efforts to reach women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities with two sources from each group. Institute an applicant tracking system. Analyze pay equity at least annually, and request race, gender and veteran status of current employees and new hires. You may also need to comply with local and state laws as part of the contract.
Federal contracts are increasingly more complex from an HR perspective. Ensure you can pass a compliance audit before you begin work, which will save you hours of time and dollars down the road.
This column provides information about the law designed to help users safely cope with their own legal needs. However, legal information is not the same as legal advice — the application of law to an individual’s specific circumstances. Although we go to great lengths to make sure our information is accurate and useful, we recommend you consult a lawyer if you want professional assurance that our information, and your interpretation of it, are appropriate to your particular situation.
Barbara Cruz Stallone, SPHR, is the owner of Stallone & Associates LLC. She is a 35-plus-year human resource professional. She was a partner with the Human Resource Umbrella LLC for 16 years before selling that company, and is a member of AGC. Suggestions for future articles or questions may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.