Get ready for changing EEO-1 reporting requirements

September 6, 2017|Kailee Wahler

EEO-1 reporting requirements were set to change for the 2017 reporting year, but pay data reporting aspects have now been suspended. Certain employers will still need to comply with the new filing deadline.

The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is suspending the pay data reporting portion of the revised EEO-1 form. This was likely done in an effort to further review ways to address pay discrimination, to alleviate concerns about the cost of implementing new data collection measures and to relieve uncertainty regarding how the data would be used effectively.

You may be thinking to yourself, I don’t know anything about EEO-1 reporting! No worries—we can get you up to speed.

What is the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)?

The EEOC is an independent federal agency that enforces federal laws protecting against job discrimination. These laws make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or employee for the following reasons:

  • Race
  • Color
  • Religion
  • Sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation and gender identity)
  • National origin
  • Age (40 and older)
  • Disability
  • Genetic information

It is also illegal for employers to discriminate against someone who shares a concern or files a complaint about discrimination, or participates in a discrimination investigation or lawsuit. The EEOC investigates workplace discrimination cases to ensure employees and employers are properly following the laws. The EEOC also ensures employees receive relief if the employer is found guilty of discrimination. This relief can come in the form of money, policy changes or job reinstatement.

What is the EEO-1 report?

The EEO-1 report is a compliance report that requires employers to share employment data categorized by race/ethnicity, gender and job category. This report is used by agencies to analyze employment patterns, such as representation of women and minorities within companies, industries or geographical regions.

Who is required to file?

  1. Private employers, including federal contractors and subcontractors with 100 or more employees
  2. Federal contractors and subcontractors with 50 to 99 employees

What were the new EEO-1 reporting requirements for 2017?

The EEOC released a revised EEO-1 report in fall 2016. This revised report formerly included two new categories of information that certain groups of employers would have had to report, including summary pay data and aggregate hours worked.

When will I file the EEO-1 report for 2017?

The first deadline for the new 2017 EEO-1 report is March 31, 2018. The deadline had been moved from Sept. 30, 2017, in anticipation of the new reporting requirements surrounding pay data. This new March deadline will remain in place.

While the new filing deadline remains in effect, employers will no longer need to provide pay data information. You can use the latest version of the EEO-1 form, but refrain from providing salary information and leave that portion blank. Information that had been required previously will still need to be reported. It is unknown when or if the pay data collection requirements will be reinstated.

Employers will still count their employees during the “workforce snapshot period” of October 1 through December 31, 2017. Employers may choose any pay period during this window to count all full- and part-time employees.

The EEOC is expected to provide further updates about the revised EEO-1 report, although no timeline has been announced. Should these pay data collection requirements be reinstated in the future, you’ll need to take significant steps to prepare for this type of reporting, including conducting a pay-equity analysis to identify any disparities that my raise red flags.

And remember, while it is unknown whether pay data collection provisions will be a requirement for EEO-1 reporting in the future, paying a fair wage is still an important aspect of your overall corporate culture, along with your recruitment and retention practices.

What steps are needed to ensure fair and equitable compensation practices?

  1. Conduct a pay-equity analysis to identify any disparities that may raise red flags. Look by total company, department, job category/position or other meaningful grouping.
    • Consider establishing attorney-client privilege to keep data and findings private. This will help protect you if you are audited or litigated.
    • Utilize your payroll system and/or HR Information System (HRIS) to conduct this analysis.
    • Commit to fixing any issues you uncover prior to reporting data in 2018.
  2. Review your compensation processes. How are decisions made? Are they documented? Do you have policies in place for compensation changes, such as promotions, lateral changes, new hires and others? Are pay raises consistent with performance management processes? If you do not have policies in place, now is a good time to implement structure around compensation decisions.
  3. Review job descriptions and ensure they are up to date and correlate with the correct EEO code. 

Our HR Consulting team is here to help and can guide you through this process. Call 800-236-2246 to find out how we can partner with you to manage your HR function.

Kailee Wahler, human resources consultant with Schenck, builds relationships with clients and advises businesses on a wide variety of human resources matters. She provides one-on-one guidance and counsel, along with the ability to analyze and offer solutions to everyday HR challenges.