OFCCP Gears Up For Second Wave Of Compliance Audits
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”) has identified 5,000 additional federal contractors who will be subject to audit between now and September 30, 2008, the end of OFCCP’s fiscal year. This completes OFCCP’s list of 7,500 audit targets for this fiscal year. (The first 2,500 audit targets were identified in September, 2007.)
OFCCP has mailed a Corporate Scheduling Announcement Letter (“CSAL”) to the Chief Executive Officer (or designated point of contact) of each parent company with more than one affiliated federal contractor on the OFCCP list. The CSAL is not an audit scheduling letter, but rather, provides advance warning that an audit may be imminent. The purpose of the CSAL is to:
- Notify the federal contractor’s internal EEO staff of the need to obtain management support for EEO and self-audit efforts;
- Invite the federal contractor to take advantage of OFCCP compliance assistance offerings;
- Encourage the federal contractor to focus on self-audit efforts so as to save OFCCP time and resources in the event of a formal audit; and
- Help the federal contractor manage and budget the time required for audit activity.
While not every federal contractor identified in the CSAL will be selected for an audit, the converse is also true – a federal contractor may be selected for an audit even if its parent company was not sent a CSAL. For example, a federal contractor may be selected for audit after receiving a contract award notice or in response to an individual complaint. OFCCP will send a Scheduling Letter to each federal contractor ultimately selected for audit. This starts the formal audit process.
Employers should take steps to ensure that any Scheduling Letter received from OFCCP will be forwarded immediately to the appropriate manager. This is critical because the time period for responding to an OFCCP Scheduling Letter is typically only thirty (30) days.
As always, please feel free to call with any questions you may have about your potential status as a federal contractor, the OFCCP audit process, or OFCCP affirmative action plans in general.