The OFCCP has once again quietly published a new “Corporate Scheduling Announcement List,” or “CSAL,” as they are known. The CSAL is a list of federal contractor establishments that have been selected, but not yet scheduled for a compliance evaluation.
The list appeared with no fanfare as the OFCCP seems to have fallen out of the habit of letting the public know about important developments (or any, really, other than settlement wins for the agency). The new list appeared on the OFCCP’s website briefly yesterday but was quickly taken down.
Typically one or two audit lists are generated each year through the OFCCP’s “administratively neutral selection” process in order to keep the work pipeline flowing for agency compliance officers. Note that being listed on a CSAL does not guarantee that your selected location will actually be audited in the same year that the CSAL was published, or the next year for that matter. It simply means that the location’s bingo ball has been pulled from the hopper and the OFCCP will get to it eventually.
And the OFCCP has abandoned the tradition of treating the CSAL list as any sort of meaningful “heads-up” to contractors about impending audits. In the past, the agency implemented various informal policies by which actual audit letters from a newly generated list would not be sent for a set period of time after the list was published. The OFCCP recently announced in an agency directive, however, that some audit letters from the new list might go out immediately.
What’s In the List?
There are 400 federal contractor establishments or functions newly selected for audit. 12 of those will be “Corporate Management Compliance Evaluations” (CMCEs). These are typically audits of the organization’s headquarters location (or U.S. headquarters) that, in addition to a “regular” audit, focuses on potential “glass ceiling” issues and the particulars of hiring, managing, and compensating upper management.
12 of the entries are tagged as “FAAP” audits, meaning that the contractors selected hold current “functional affirmative action plan” agreements (FAAPs) with the OFCCP and the agency has selected a function, rather than a physical location, to audit. There do not appear to be any construction audits included in the new list.
Consistent with the OFCCP’s most recent directive, the remainder of the audits on the new list will be “full” establishment reviews, as the agency has shelved the “focused” reviews implemented during the prior administration. Although the agency has not been explicit on the matter, BCGi anticipates that this means the more detailed procedures for the more limited focused reviews will not be abandoned, but rather rolled into the procedures for a “regular” audit, making the standard audit experience far more involved. The agency has these detailed audit procedures for focusing on disability issues, veteran issues, promotions, and compensation (though the last two were never implemented).
Where Can I Find the List?
What Should I Do?
Nothing, according to the OFCCP. As far as the agency is concerned, your AAPs should always be “audit ready,” so getting an audit letter in the mail should not result in panic. For larger, more complex organizations, however, the AAP preparation process can take months and many of those will prioritize finishing and rounding-out the AAPs for locations on a CSAL list.
That can be a sound strategy in terms of focusing limited time and resources, but be careful about preparing too much for an audit that might not come for months or even years.
If you have questions about this or any other OFCCP-related matter, drop us a line at BCGi@Biddle.com.