EEO-1 Reporting 101

EEO-1 Reporting 101

The May 31st deadline for submitting your organization’s EEO-1 report is just around the corner, which means for many of us that it is time to start finalizing and reviewing gathered information needed for annual EEO-1 reporting. In our last post, we discussed recent progress in the decision of whether or not employers additionally need to report on pay data for their employees, which provided a great opportunity to go back to the basics: EEO-1 Reporting 101.

The EEO-1 Report is a compliance survey that is mandated by federal regulations and statutes. Some of the most frequent questions asked pertaining to EEO-1 reporting include: who needs to file, what do you need to report and why, and when do you have to do all of this?

Who: The most commonly asked question with regards to EEO-1 reporting is who needs to file and what are the requirements for that organization? The criteria are as follows:

  • Private employers/organizations with more than 100 employees (subject to certain exemptions); or
  • Organizations with fewer than 100 employees who are owned by or are corporately affiliated with another company whose entire enterprise employs a total of 100 or more employees; or
  • Federal government prime contractors (private employers) who are not subject to any exemptions, have 50 or more employees, and are first-tier subcontractors with 50 or more employees and a prime contract or a first-tier subcontract totaling $50,000 or more OR serve as a depository of government funds in any amount OR are a financial institution which is an issuing and paying agent for U.S. Savings Bonds and Savings Notes.

What: If the organization meets one of the above requirements, the survey requires them to submit employment data that is categorized by race/ethnicity, gender, and job category which the Equal Employment Opportunity Committee (EEOC) and the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) use to support civil rights enforcement and analyze employment patterns, which in turn help them determine where the likelihood of systematic discrimination is the highest. This online submission must include:

  • A report covering the principal or headquarters office;
  • A separate report for each establishment employing 50 or more persons;
  • A consolidated report that MUST include ALL employees by race, sex, and job category in establishments with 50 or more employees as well as establishments with fewer than 50 employees; and
  • A list, showing the name, address, total employment, and major activity for each establishment employing fewer than 50 persons, must accompany the consolidated report.

When: Survey data must be pulled from one year’s pay period from either October, November, or December of the current survey year (e.g., for the 2018 report, pull data from November 1st, 2017 – November 1st, 2018). That data is then analyzed, compiled, and submitted into the EEO-1 form. The most convenient way to submit this data is through the EEOC’s website, in which all data is electronically entered and submitted. A copy of the form is available for your records after submission. EEO-1 reports must be submitted and certified no later than May 31st, annually.

These basic elements are just the beginning when it comes to EEO-1 reporting. There are a number of other steps, requirements, and methods of ongoing maintenance that go into reporting to ensure that the reporting process is accurate, conducted efficiently, and produces the desired outcomes. EEO-1 reporting can be a breeze or a hassle depending on established procedures and participation. As May 31st draws closer, contact us for assistance in gathering employee data, creating efficient processes for pulling information, or for filing on your behalf.

Cleaning Up – Your Files!

Cleaning Up – Your Files!

Last week we discussed how this start of the new year is a prime time to take a look at your processes/procedures, Employee Handbook, and Job Descriptions to ensure efficiency and compliance with regards to HR best practices.

Not only is it necessary to regularly review those items, but it is also critical to conduct annual, if not more frequent, reviews of employee personnel, confidential, medical, and other related files (e.g., I-9 and payroll). Not only do well-organized files ensure that items are quickly located, resulting in a more efficient use of time (both for HR and management), but it is vital to regularly audit your files to ensure compliance with federal and state regulations. When conducting an audit of your personnel files, ask yourself these questions to ensure that these basic guidelines are met:

  • Are files stored and maintained separately, in accordance with relevant state and federal laws? (E.g., are personnel files stored in a locked, secure location, separate from confidential and medical files?):
    • Is access to confidential and medical files limited to HR and managers with a “need to know”?
    • Are documents contained in these files stored in their proper location? (E.g., is leave paperwork stored in the medical file, and are performance and disciplinary documentation stored in the personnel file?).
  • Are I-9 forms filled out correctly and stored in a secure location, separate from all other files?
  • Does your organization have policies and procedures in place for document retention and timely destruction of expired documents?

Every organization has their own way of maintaining their employee files. Variations in processes and systems are fine, as long as compliance standards are met, any documentation containing confidential or personal identifying information (e.g., SSNs, financial data, medical information, etc.) is kept separate and secure of standard personnel data.

One of the most important things to make sure of is that whatever procedures you implement for file maintenance are consistent and maintained on a regular basis. Conduct annual, if not more frequent, audits of your employee files and make certain that all employees in charge of ongoing upkeep are aware of best practices and adhere to these policies.

Contact HRCentral today for assistance with conducting an in-depth employee file audit, or for the implementation of applicable policies and procedures to ensure your files safeguarding and organizing your employee files. are maintained in compliance with applicable law.

Tidying Up for the New Year

Tidying Up for the New Year

The start of the new year has many of us motivated to make positive changes in our lives, both on a personal and a professional level. At work, January often provides employers with a chance to take a step back and review any internal policies and processes that your organization has in place, and determine if any modifications are warranted for efficiency, compliance, and best practices. In a nutshell, reviewing and preparing for a more thorough HR audit.

Items that warrant a go-over include:

  • Employee Handbook – January is fairly standard for handbook reviews as the start of the year is typically when state and federal agencies release any updates and changes to governing law and regulations applicable to employers. Take a look at any updates that have been made in your state and at the federal level to ensure compliance with employment and labor law, and to make certain all polices are adequately updated.
  • Job Descriptions – A document that is habitually forgotten about once the initial copy is drafted and put in place, job descriptions should be reviewed regularly to make any changes needed to ensure that the essential functions accurately reflect the work actually being done. The scope of work for so many employees and positions changes.
  • Internal Processes/Systems – The culture of an organization is something that is always changing with the times. As such, it is important to take frequent looks at how you manage your employees, what processes work and what ones don’t, and how systems can be modified to encourage productivity and loyalty.

Making the time to do periodic reviews to documents, processes, and policies can save you a ton of time in the long run and can help ensure that your HR and employment-related documents are always compliant and up to date. Follow along in our next post as we discuss how to properly review those HR and employment-specific documents (including form I-9s, new hire documentation, medical paperwork, etc.), to ensure compliance with retention and destruction guidelines.

HRCentral specializes in reviewing, updating, and creating these documents. Contact us today for a complimentary consultation to see if your organization can benefit from an HR department review, refresh, or complete audit!

2019: Looking Ahead

2019: Looking Ahead

2018 has been a whirlwind year for employers. Countless regulations and laws affecting the employment and labor sectors were implemented which impacted organizations ranging in size and industry. Equal pay laws have gone into effect in states across the country, predictive scheduling has been implemented in countless larger cities, and paid sick leave laws are increasing in popularity in cities and states alike.

Much like its predecessor, 2019 is slated to have a number of impactful changes as well. Below are a few of the things to keep an eye out for, ideally to be able to proactively prepare for the change before it hits:

Minimum Wage Increases – As is the case at the start of nearly every year, many states will start the new year out with an increase in the minimum wage rate for employees. In 2019, twenty states will increase their minimum wage at the start of the year, with many others releasing increases at staggered time frames throughout the course of the year.

Strengthened Harassment Policies – In light of the highly publicized “Me Too” movement throughout the past year, it is no surprise that many states are tightening their policies on workplace harassment. For example, California has been ahead of the game in mandating anti-harassment training for supervisors every two years at organizations with more than 50 employees. This is changing in the North Bay area to affect employers with more than five employees.

Predictive Scheduling – Increasing in popularity, many additional cities are following the trend that Oregon has set with predictive scheduling. While the laws differ in specifics from location to location, a standard set of rules will apply to all policies: schedules must be posted in advance, typically 7 to 14 days ahead of the first scheduled shift; extra pay is provided to the employee if a scheduled shift is altered after it is posted; unless an employee volunteers to do so, there must be adequate rest periods given between shifts; and, employers must retain records relating to schedules for a set period of time.

Tipping Legislation – While many states have implemented similar legislation, at the federal level, significant legislative development has taken place over the past year that affects tipped employees. More specifically, a bill known simply as “The Act” has amended the Fair Labor Standards Act to prohibit an employer from keeping tips that have been received by their employees for any reason.

If any of the afore mentioned changes will impact your organization, contact HRCentral to see how we can assist you in updating policies and implementing these practices within your organization in a seamless and efficient way.

Like many state and federal employment and labor law updates, the majority of these regulations will result in updates to state and federal labor law posters. HRCentral provides this service to our clients and colleagues, so feel free to contact us to get a combined state and federal labor law poster ordered for your organization’s locations today!

HRCentral wishes you and your families a very Happy New Year!

Big Changes of 2018

Big Changes of 2018

From the highly publicized “Me Too” movement to advances in equal pay, 2018 has proven to be a progressive and eye-opening year with regards to proposed and enacted changes in employment and labor law. Some highlights over the past year include:

Equal Pay for Equal Work – Equal pay laws have become prevalent in states across the country, ensuring that both genders receive equal pay in the workplace. In an attempt to bridge the gap between genders to make certain there is pay equity for the same job, countless states have passed legislation that prohibits employers from asking applicants questions regarding salaries from previous employment, and from reviewing and filtering out applicants based on pay.

Predictive Scheduling – Many larger cities have enacted predictive scheduling, and in 2018 Oregon became the first state to pass statewide predictive scheduling regulations which applies to employers with more than 500 employees in hospitality, retail, and food services industries. Under this law, employers must provide new employees with a written, good faith estimate of their work schedule at the time of hire; maintain a voluntary standby list; must provide all employees with advance notice of work schedules; follow regulations regarding an employee’s right to rest between shifts; provide employees with the right to provide input into work schedules; and provide employees with compensation for employer-requested schedule changes given without advance notice.

Paid Sick Leave Laws – Following suit of cities who have implemented this practice, many states saw the implementation of similar laws that ensured all employees receive paid sick leave for a set number of hours worked (e.g., 1 hour of paid leave for every 30 or 40 hours worked). With states and employers tailoring these regulations to their own cultures and policies, this increasing trend is likely to continue to be highlighted in years to come.

Like many state and federal employment and labor law updates, the majority of these regulations resulted in updates to state and federal labor law posters. HRCentral provides this service to our clients and colleagues, so feel free to contact us to have a combined state and federal labor law poster ordered for your organization today!

While only some of the many changes that hit employers in 2018, there are countless updates that are slated to hit employers at the state and federal level in 2019. Follow along in our next post as we outline these biggest changes that are predicted to impact your organization, and how to adequately prepare.

 

California Fires and Inclement Weather

California Fires and Inclement Weather

With clients scattered all along the west coast, our hearts are heavy and our thoughts are with those who we work closely with that have been affected by the California wildfires that are still burning through the state. During times of natural disaster, organizations often face a state of emergency. With countless uncertainties stemming from these unforeseen events, it is nearly impossible to be fully prepared for a tragic event such as a fire sweeping through your region.

Particularly in regions where certain types of disaster or inclement weather is a likely reality (e.g., wildfires in the west, hurricanes in the south, blizzards in the northeast), it is important to have a few proactive steps in place to make certain that there is a balance between your employees being taken care of and operations and productivity being impacted as little as possible:

  • Formulate a plan. Revamp your organization’s Inclement Weather Policy (if you have one). No business can afford to be ambiguous when it comes to how your business operates under poor weather scenarios. Depending upon your region, think through the types of weather scenarios, document clear expectations in your Handbook, and communicate those expectations to your employees as they arise. Your Policy should also plainly state who is responsible for announcing any changes to normal business hours or possible closures.
  • Address the question of employee pay. Whether your office will have partial-day closure, or consecutive closure days, communicate to your employees how their pay will be affected. Follow your state’s laws regarding pay during closures, and outline your procedure as clearly as possible in your Handbook for both exempt and non-exempt employees.
  • Ensure that there are reliable means of communication during inclement weather for informing employees if they should return to work or stay home. Some organizations set up phone trees, email, or even use social media to keep their employees up-to-date. Also, just because your business isn’t physically open doesn’t mean it is shut down. You may consider training your staff to use Skype and Google Docs (the Cloud) to ensure your business is still maintaining productive standards while the weather rages.

As we lead into the Thanksgiving holiday next week, our thoughts are with all of our friends and colleagues and their families who have been impacted by the horrific events in California. Our warmest wishes for your safety and health are with you all.