Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.
On August 31, 2021, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approved the Affirmative Action Program Verification Interface (AAVI) proposed by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) for the verification and upload of federal contractor affirmative action plans.
The AAVI has its origins in a 2018 OFCCP Directive requiring implementation of a verification process to ensure all federal contractors are meeting basic compliance requirements which was, itself, a response to a study by the Government Accountability Office critical of OFCCP’s emphasis on enforcement at the expense of broader compliance efforts.
In September 2020, OFCCP requested the OMB to approve the AAVI, through which the agency proposed to collect affirmative action plans from federal contractors and subcontractors. The AAVI is designed to integrate with the case management system OFCCP uses to manage its audit cases.
Pursuant to OFCCP’s proposal, federal contractors will be required to upload copies of affirmative action plans only for establishments identified by OFCCP for audit. On an annual basis, however, contractors will be required to certify that they have developed compliant affirmative action plans, not to upload their entire set of plans.
The OFCCP has in the past said that this annual verification would allow the agency to identify which contractors do not verify compliance, or those that choose “no,” indicating they are not in compliance. The hope among all stakeholders is that this practice would lead to a change from seeing the same companies that are in compliance being audited every few years.
Along with the program proposal, OFCCP has also already published and received approval for an AAVI User Guide and Admin Guide. The OFCCP’s website does not yet provide any further information but indicates the Affirmative Action Plan Verification Interface is “Coming Soon.” Accordingly, federal contractors should stay alert for further guidance.