Federal Contractors must comply with new affirmative action requirements


As of March 24th, 2014 ALL Federal Contractors are now REQUIRED to make seven changes to comply with sub parts A,B,D and E of the regulations:

  • In policy references, refer to “protected veterans,” instead of the old veteran categories.
  • Change the EEO tag line in job listings from EOE AA M/F/D/V to EOE AA M/F/Vet/Disability.
  • Include new required contract language in boldface.
  • Tell the state employment service delivery system that the business is a federal contractor and wants priority referrals of protected veterans for job openings. Provide the contact information for the contractor official responsible for hiring at each site.
  • Link to the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Program’s (OFCCP)EEO is the Law poster when using an electronic applicant tracking system.
  • Provide this link on the intranet for employees who telecommute.
  • Hold records for four years—one more than the three years required, up from two—to be on the safe side.

Phased IN

Part C of the disabilities and veterans rules will take effect at the start of federal contractors’ affirmative action year, according to Eric Felsberg, an attorney in Jackson Lewis’ Melville, N.Y., office. So if that coincides with the start of the calendar year, contractors have time to gear up for Part C’s 7 percent utilization goal for people with disabilities and 8 percent goal for veterans, he said.

But if the plan year starts much earlier, say April 1, the time to comply with the new rule across the board is near.

Contractors have always been responsible for providing affirmative action for people with disabilities and veterans, Felsberg noted. But under the new requirements they must comply in more specific ways.

Some believe they now must hire a certain percentage of people with disabilities or veterans, but that’s not true, Felsberg said. The goals are aspirational targets that the federal government would like businesses to hit. If not, the government will scrutinize the efforts that were made, so contractors should expect that to be where “the scrutiny is going to be.”

Allen Smith, J.D.



2014 Best Jobs for Veterans

2014 Best Jobs for Veterans

Veterans of the U. S. Armed Forces are provided with unique training that applies well to the civilian labor market, and every year more employers
are taking notice.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports the unemployment rate for veterans 18 years and older was 5.5% last month, an improvement from last year’s 7% average unemployment rate for the entire veteran population. Leading the way are veterans who are finding jobs that match their skills especially well, and that includes careers which tap heavily into their training in such fields as engineering and information technology.

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NEW Compliance Rules Regarding VETERANS

New Changes to OFCCP Compliance

New Changes to OFCCP Compliance

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) recently announced final rules established hiring targets with respect to the hiring of veterans and individuals with disabilities. Since that announcement, the rules have been published in the Federal Register and are scheduled to take effect on March 24, 2014. Although much of the publicity to date has focused on the hiring benchmarks and challenges they pose for the contractor community, the final rules impose several other new obligations on federal contractors. Below is a list of six other significant changes set forth in the final rules:

  1. Invitations to Self-Identify: Contractors will now be required to ask applicants to self-identify as veterans and individuals with disabilities at both the pre- and post-offer stage. (Previously, contractors were only required to ask about veteran and disability status at the post-offer stage.) Additionally, contractors will be required to reissue the invitation to self-identify every five years and must remind employees at least once during the intervening time period that they can voluntarily update their disability status.
  2. Priority Considerations & Referrals: Under the final rules, contractors are still required to list their job openings with the appropriate state workforce agency. However, they now must also take the following actions at the time an initial job listing is made: (1) inform the state employment service of their contractor status, (2) provide contact information for the hiring official at each location in the state, (3) provide contact information for approved outside job search service i.e. hire a hero, and (4) request priority referrals of protected veterans for job openings.
  3. Mandatory Recruitment & Outreach: Contractors are required to conduct appropriate outreach and make “substantial” recruitment and on-the-job training efforts with respect to veterans and individuals with disabilities. The final rules specify a number of resources that must be contacted and actions that must be taken by contractors to carry out these obligations. These include contacts with the local veterans’ employment office, Department of Veterans Affairs Regional Office, veterans’ representatives on college campuses, veterans’ service groups like Hire A Hero, the state vocational rehabilitation service agency, local disability groups or Centers for Independent Living, placement or career offices at educational institutions, and private recruitment sources specializing in disabled individuals, among others. Additionally, contractors must formally evaluate the effectiveness of their recruitment efforts on annual basis, document the evaluation, and implement alternative efforts if their current recruitment efforts were not effective in identifying and recruiting qualified veterans and individuals with disabilities.
  4. Notification Regarding Affirmative Action Plan & Policy: The new rules require contractors to make the full affirmative action plan available to any employee or applicant on request and to post an affirmative action policy statement (reflecting the support of the contractor’s chief executive) on bulletin boards and in policy manuals. This notice must be accessible to persons with disabilities and easy to understand. Contractors must also notify all subcontractors and subcontracting vendors, in writing, of the contractor’s affirmative action program and request appropriate actions toward compliance on the subcontractor’s part. Finally, contractors must notify unions of the affirmative action policy and request the union’s cooperation with policy compliance.
  5. Changes to Reasonable Accommodation Policy or Procedure: The final rules require contractors to participate in an interactive process regarding accommodations for disabled veterans and individuals with disabilities. Although not required, the use of a written reasonable accommodation policy is listed as a best practice. Additionally, the rules require contractors to give disabled veterans the option of covering a portion (or all) of the expense of a proposed reasonable accommodation themselves if the accommodation is deemed an undue hardship by the contractor. The rules also describe circumstances under which a contractor may need to make confidential inquiries if a known disabled veteran is having difficulty performing his or her job in order to determine if the problem is disability-related and if the employee needs a reasonable accommodation.
  6. Mandatory Training: Finally, the final rules require that all personnel involved in recruitment, screening, selection, promotion, and disciplinary actions be trained on the contractor’s affirmative action obligations.

To learn more about how Hire A Hero can help please email info@hireahero.org

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Employers! Looking to Hire a Hero: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW


As a HR Recruiter or Employer looking to hire new talent, you more than likely have come across organization, news articles, and other entities reaching out to you to hire returning veterans. There is no doubt that we owe the men and women who have served a great deal of gratitude for serving our country, but is that alone a reason to hire one? No; truth is you should be considering hiring a veteran because of the leadership and structured skill they learned while serving in the military. But, how does that translate to your organization?

The purpose of this blog is exactly that, we intend to provide you and your organization the information needed to recruit, educate, retain, and support those returning home from active duty to a civilian career. We realize that every employer is unique and we will do everything to provide you with common practices and resources that employers are using to successfully welcome veterans into their companies. Whether you are starting from scratch or rejuvenating an existing resolution, we encourage you to follow this blog as a reference to find a solution that works for you.

In the up coming weeks/months I will update this blog to educate employers and provide a one stop shop on best practices to Hiring A Hero.


Thank you for thinking of our troops!!

Rob Barr- Executive Director- Armed Forces Support Foundation.


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Top 10 Reasons to Hire A Hero

Top 10 Reasons to Hire A Hero.

According to the Department of Labor unemployment statistics last month, new Veterans aged 18-24 are coming home to an unemployment rate of 20.4%.

Although it appears unemployment is getting better these numbers are not great and we as American’s need to address this issue.

Lets not make unemployment a natural part of  transition! LETS HIRE A HERO.

Top 10 Reasons to Hire A Hero

Top 10 reasons why every employer should hire a veteran coming out of the military.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDuUnVT9-Kg&feature=youtu.be%5D
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Massive Changes for Federal Contractors

SOURCE: eQuest

January 30, 2013 13:48 ET
eQuest Reports OFCCP’s Published 2013 Unified Budget Signals Massive Changes for Federal Contractor Employers in 2013 and Beyond
SAN RAMON, CA–(Marketwire – Jan 30, 2013) – eQuest today announced that it has completed a cursory review of the recently released Unified Budget for Fiscal Year 2013. The report makes it clear that the OFCCP is breathing new life into its decades-old rules in ways that can only be described as ambitious and burdensome.
The Unified Agenda signals that OFCCP intends to aggressively implement new rules and regulations affecting federal contractors and subcontractors in the upcoming year. We have already seen two significant new requirements for Federal Contractors in January, 2013 alone.
The new rules will be phased-in — although two portions have already gone into effect as recently as January 1, and January 18, 2013. In April, according to the Budget approval, the contractor community should see new VEVRAA and section 503 regulations for covered Veterans and people with disabilities.
According to a client alert sent by prestigious law firm, Proskauer, the approved and published budget points directly to 2013 being a historic year for regulatory changes, increased enforcement and exhaustive burden on Federal Contractors.
The alert reads:
Contractors and Subcontractors should expect OFCCP regulatory action to include the following:

1.) Implementation of final rules for individuals with disabilities and covered veterans, including:
Increased enforcement with respect to hiring, worker retention and data collection
Increased desk audits, on-site activity, and increased focus on Section 503 and VEVRAA
2.) Implementation of new pay equity data collection tools
3.) Focus on the construction industry
4.) Implementation of “Good Jobs for Everyone” OFCCP will place greater emphasis on “meaningful and effective” affirmative action evaluations
5.) New Functional Affirmative Action Program (“FAAP”) directive Permits contractors to develop Affirmative Action Plans (“AAP”) based on business function or business unit rather than contractor establishments
Contractors are not eligible for FAAP renewal unless two functional units have passed compliance evaluations during the agreement’s three-year term
6.) Executive Order 13495 – Nondisplacement of Qualified Workers Under Service Contracts

New requirement to offer jobs to predecessor contractor’s workers
Effective January 18, 2013
We would like to thank the Proskauer law firm for the detail in this report. eQuest’s Compliance Division will continue to keep its customers up-to-date as new regulations and requirements unfold.
About eQuest
eQuest provides State and Diversity job distribution for hundreds of Federal contractors. It also is the world’s dominant and most utilized job posting distribution company. Its primary customer base consists of the majority of the Global Fortune 500. It also provides job deliveries on behalf of the world’s largest Applicant Tracking Systems, ERP’s, and job boards — managing thousands of companies through these channels. Present job posting deliveries average 250 million annually. Its Big Data for HR division collects approximately 5 million job board performance statistics weekly — making eQuest the Nielsen Ratings company of the HR industry. Other products include consulting, OFCCP compliance and audit protection, technology services, data analytics, Interactive media representation, SEO, and various predictive tools. eQuest was established in 1994. eQuest can be reached at http://www.equest.com.

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Hire A Hero 6 (What’s new for employers???)

Coming SOON!



Hire A Hero 6 is COMING NOVEMBER 1st, 2012.

Check out some of the features coming soon!

Here is a look at some of the new services we will be offering employers in the up and coming release.

  • Matchcast- A performance-based matching tool that allows you to match jobs against resumes in the candidate database, and automatically engage relevant candidates to solicit responses to your job listings
  • Extended Visibility- Allows you to expand your listing to a greater audience
  • Wraps and Scraping- This service allow us to download data from your career website and add it to our database automatically. (Only site with text and HTML)
  • Featured Job Upgrade- Allows employers to maximize their exposure on multiple pages and sections within our website.
  • Preferred Company Upgrade- Allows you to leverage your company identity to drive targeted traffic to your jobs.
  • Mobil Mini- Allow you to create a personal mobile mini website that will attach to your Hire A Hero page.
  • Compliance Ad documentation Tool- Employer that have EEOC compliance requirements can now have access to a PDF screenshot of the ad via email, automatically. This confirmation eliminates compliance risks and hassles for any HR department.
  • Niche Networks- We now offer the ability to connect with a number of Niche sites that are partnered with Hire A Hero.

For more information email: Rob@hireahero.org or call 866-440-4424 Ext 1010.

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Expanded Tax Credits for Hiring Veterans What You Need to Know

The VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011 made changes to the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) for hiring Veterans. The Act added two new categories to the existing qualified veteran targeted group and made the WOTC available to certain tax-exempt employers as a credit against the employer’s share of social security tax. The Act allows employers to claim the WOTC for Veterans certified as qualified Veterans and who begin work before January 1, 2013.
Summary of the Credit
The credit can be as high as $9,600 per qualified veteran for for-profit employers, or up to $6,240 for qualified tax-exempt organizations. The amount of the credit will depend on a number of factors, including the length of the veteran’s unemployment before hire, the number of hours the veteran works, and the veteran’s first-year wages. For example, a for-profit employer can claim a credit of:
• Up to $2,400 for hiring a veteran who has been unemployed for at least four weeks.
• Up to $5,600 for hiring a veteran who has been unemployed for more than six months.
• Up to $4,800 for hiring a veteran with a service-connected disability.
• Up to $9,600 for hiring a veteran with a service-connected disability and who has been unemployed for more than six months.
Please refer to your CPA for further details.
Certifying A Veteran
All employers must obtain certification that an individual is a member of the targeted group before the employer may claim the credit. The process for certifying the Veterans for this credit is the same for all employers. Eligible employers must file Form 8850 with their respective state workforce agency. Normally, that must happen within 28 days after the eligible worker begins work. But,
under a special rule employers have until June 19, 2012, to complete and file for Veterans hired on or after Nov. 22, 2011, and before May 22, 2012. The 28-day rule will again apply to eligible veterans hired on or after May 22, 2012.
After the required certification is secured, for-profit employers claim the tax credit as a general business credit against their income tax. Tax-exempt employers claim the credit against the employer social security tax by separately filing Form 5884-C.

John von Harz

Compliance Specialist

Hire A Hero

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