Although employment laws and regulations are typically seen as telling employers what NOT to do, there are some laws and initiatives by government agencies that give employers of ideas of what TO do, whether in terms of hiring practices or other programs.
One new directive by the The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs late last month is focused on promoting the hiring of veterans and encouraging employers to develop programs for veterans.
The Good Faith Initiative for Veterans Employment, or “G-FIVE,” is designed to create incentives for contractors to make significant efforts to hire and promote veterans. G-FIVE reaffirms the OFCCP’s commitment to the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act and will provide recognition to companies with “best practices.”
What are the criteria that an employer will be judged? Some of the listed factors are:
- Evidence of covered veterans in the contractor’s labor force.
- Evidence of an increase in the number of covered veterans in the contractor’s labor force.
- The number of partnerships with local veterans’ service organizations to employ or advance covered veterans.
- Established liaison with the state workforce agency job bank or the local employment service delivery system representative to facilitate the posting of their job listings. Whether appropriate job openings were sent to the state and/or local employment service delivery system and the number of veterans hired by the contractor during the AAP year.
- Recruitment efforts at educational institutions to reach students who are covered veterans.
- The number of job advertisements in the local community targeting veterans; and targeted recruitment of qualified covered veterans during company career days and/or related activities in contractor communities.
- Affirmative action steps taken to attract qualified special disabled or disabled veterans through the nearest Veterans Administration job placement program.
- The number of on-the-job training opportunities provided to covered veterans.
Although this program is only for federal contractors, the guidelines that it sets provide a good starting point for employers to consider.
With veterans returning from the war each day, there are certainly many qualified soldiers looking for opportunities. For federal contractors, the OFCCP’s directive provides a two-for-one opportunity: getting recognized as an employer with "best practices" in hiring veterans, while also employing veterans who have served this country.
One other added benefit: Contractors that receive a G-FIVE rating will be excluded from an OFCCP compliance evaluation for three (3) years following the date the recipient receives the rating, unless there are some complaints or credible reports of a violation of federal law.