Remaining Compliant with the EEO-1 Survey

September 15, 2016 Andrew Larsen

September 30, 2016 is fast approaching! For many employers, this means the mandatory EEO-1 survey must be completed and filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity’s Commission (EEOC) EEO-1 Joint Reporting Committee. For businesses that haven’t started the survey, now is the time to begin. While the survey is not complicated, it does require some advanced preparation. Here are some things to know before you start.

What is the EEO-1 Survey
The purpose of the EEO-1 is to check for compliance among businesses to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It asks for a company’s employment data and categorizes hires into race/ethnicity, gender and job category. This report is used by the EEOC to support civil rights enforcement and analyze employment patterns. After gathering this data, the EEOC releases the collective results to the public.

Review Your Workforce
For businesses that are preparing now for the EEO-1 survey, the EEOC requests that businesses submit the form online. Be sure to have self-identification forms and data for each employee. The EEOC estimates that employers will need to allocate three and half hours to complete one survey form. A sample of the information the EEOC needs reported can be found here.

Who Needs to Complete the Survey?
Not every business needs to file an EEO-1 survey. There are essentially two categories of businesses that are required to report:

-    Private employers with 100 or more employees
-    Federal contractors

To see if you need to complete the survey, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission provides a helpful guide for you to check. If you fall into any of the categories mentioned within the guide, then you will be required to file Standard Form 100 (EEO-1). Depending on circumstances (e.g. multi-establishment companies), employers may need to file more than one survey.

Request an Extension
If you cannot complete the survey before the deadline, then an employer’s first step should be to request an extension. To request an extension, first visit the EEO-1 Survey’s site. Once there, scroll down to the extension requests section and request an extension via email. Businesses are granted a 30-day extension immediately after the email is sent. As a reminder, the email needs to include your company number. A company number is issued to businesses after they register with the EEOC. If your business doesn’t have a company number, then you will need to register before requesting an extension. As a warning, no extensions are granted to any business after October 30, 2016. This 30-day extension is only available once.

Failure to File Standard Form 100 (EEO-1)
HR Daily Advisor warns of the severe consequences for being non-compliant and failing to complete the EEO-1 survey. According to HR Daily Advisor, “If you are required to file an EEO-1 report but fail to do so, you could be subject to a lawsuit compelling you to report. False reporting could result in the imposition of fines or imprisonment.”

Businesses should appoint someone to gather the information necessary to complete the EEO-1 survey, and your company’s HR department is the best place to start. If your business does not have an in-house HR team, then it may be time to outsource your HR needs for 2017.  Ensuring you are compliant with all local, state and federal labor laws will only benefit your company, and it starts by having the proper resources, people, processes and systems.

About the Author

Andrew Larsen

Andrew is the Marketing Communications Specialist for Zuman, the one solution for HR, payroll, and benefits administration that supports growing small to midsize businesses.

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