When it comes to how employers should gather 2016 data on its workforce to be included in the annually required EEO-1 reports, to quote former King of Siam, it’s a puzzlement.
The new form was adopted by the Obama era Equal Employment Opportunity Commission last year massively increased the amount of data employers are required to submit annually.
The previous EEO-1 report required employers to submit 180 data points. The new one calls for 3,660 data points for each employer location of more than 50 employees.
No EEO-1 report is required for this year. The next report must be filed by March 31, 2018, based on a workforce “snapshot” taken between October and December of 2017.
Once a Republican majority takes control of the EEOC it will re-examine and possibly simplify the revised form, but it is not known at this time when that will happen (AA, 6-15-17, P. 5).
The Obama EEOC’s stated goal was to gather data about ethnic and gender pay discrimination needed to generate the policies to eliminate it. However, completing the form requires that employers deploy enormous staff resources and software investment.
Attorney David Goldstein of the law firm of Littler Mendelson also doubts that the collected data can be used productively and effectively by the EEOC.
“The broad nature of the data that employers must now provide and the absence of other data that might legitimately explain pay differences make any analysis of the new EEO-1 questionable,” he says. But there is no guarantee that Trump’s EEOC will do more than revise the new requirements.
For this reason, employers may want to begin preparations to comply with the change, Goldstein explains. “Employers more tolerant of risk can take a wait-and-see approach, understanding that they may then have difficulty filing a complete and timely report in the event the new requirements remain in place,” he warns.