In an announcement found on OFCCP’s website, the Agency has identified January 1, 2014 as the date federal contractors will be required to start using the most recently released EEO tabulation data in development of their affirmative action plans.  In other words, all affirmative action plans updated in 2013 can be done so using the existing 2000 EEO file.

Late last year the Census Bureau released its new equal employment opportunity tabulations breaking down the U.S. labor force, by sex, race, and ethnicity, in searchable form by geographic location and occupation.  In addition to other purposes, these tables serve as the source of “availability” data for affirmative action plan utilization analyses and will replace the current tabulations in use by federal contractors since 2005.  Though it has been several months since the data was released for use by the public, OFCCP delayed setting a deadline for contractor use until it could survey employers on the practicality of implementing the new information.

This year, unlike years past, the Census Bureau created the tabulations from the Bureau’s annual American Community Survey (ACS) for 2006 through 2010.  The ACS surveys nearly 2 million U.S. households annually.  In years past the EEO tabulations were based on information submitted on the decennial census long form.

The Bureau announced utilizing the ACS data allows for a more detailed picture of the labor force and even allows for insight into unemployment and citizenship status.

Contractors have until the end of 2013 to update their data files with this new tabulation and begin assessing the impact of the new comparator population on the expected race and gender make-up of your workforce. . . and don’t be surprised if your AAP utilization analyses results look very different next year.