In the world of OFCCP compliance, detailed documentation and specificity are crucial. Yet, many federal contractors and subcontractors opt for evergreen requisitions which bring a certain amount of risk. These evergreen requisitions – typically used for high-volume positions with constant hiring needs – can create difficulties in accurately assessing data and fulfilling their affirmative action plans (AAP).
Between OFCCP and equal employment opportunity (EEO) compliance, the use of evergreen requisitions can create complications, including definitions of applicants, statistical challenges, and various surveys when tracking and documenting applicants that are considered for job openings.
Most job postings have an open and close date, allowing employers to analyze finite information from a specific set of applicants and hires. This gives contractors more reliable data when comparing demographics of interested individuals. Starting a new process of outreach and talent evaluation for each new job opening may be cumbersome at time, but it ideal for proper data collection.
Conversely, evergreen requisitions help bring in a steady of flow of people for a position that has a continuous role to fill. Having an evergreen requisition for these jobs are more efficient and less time consuming for the talent acquisition team. However, the increased amount of applicants and hires over an extended period of time can disproportionately alter the statistical analysis.
These broad data sets often attract OFCCP’s attention and lend themselves to claims of discrimination due to standard deviations in the statistics. The “set it and forget it” ease of utilizing evergreen requisitions can give federal contractors a false sense of security. While they may see more applicants and hires, it’s more difficult to validate their hiring decisions and prove compliance when questioned.
Despite the potential risks, the use of evergreen requisitions offer value. The key for contractors lies in their ability to understand and manage the process continually. For employers to protect themselves, they should adhere to a handful of checkpoints and “re-releases” of these evergreen requisitions. Doing so will allow contractors to appropriately organize the information coming in and going out.
When collecting applicants and data for open requisitions, you may notice a number of future candidates who didn’t qualify for a particular position this time around. These individuals who are not offered employment can be a terrific starting point for creating a talent pipeline for future consideration.
Instead of randomly gathering potential applicants for new positions, contractors can use the existing information to create a database of talent. Depending on their skills, experience, and reasons for falling out of the hiring process, these individuals may help improve your recruiting and hiring effectiveness.
Having a group of individuals already in the pipeline improves the speed and efficiency in hiring. It also allows employers more time to increase their talent pool through other means (e.g. job boards, career fairs, social media), especially for positions that generally fail to attract qualified applicants.
When utilizing evergreen requisitions and developing pipelines of talent, contractors should be taking steps to minimize their potential risk. This means properly collecting all necessary data to satisfy their AAP and being proactive in a few key areas within their pipelines
Striking a balance between evergreen requisitions and detailed analysis of applicants in a pipeline gives federal contractors and subcontractors the best of both worlds. Through both processes, it is imperative employers continue to document detailed information, separate statistical data appropriately, and take action to ensure OFCCP compliance.