Novel issues are those that are unfamiliar, unique or fall outside the norm. Periodically, the national office will identify certain novel issues and develop specific procedures to address them. COs may encounter novel issues in a compliance evaluation. When this occurs, they must, in coordination with their supervisor and regional office, contact the Division of Program Operations (DPO) in the national office to determine the approach to use, data to obtain and analyses to conduct before recommending a finding of compliance or noncompliance. Novel issues include those not routinely addressed, like a publicly announced contractor preference in employment to Indians and Native Americans living on or near an Indian or Native American Reservation.10 Novel issues could also include compliance evaluations that involve coordination with the Expert Services Branch in DPO on issues like testing, multi-establishment contractors, and complex or unusual compensation issues. Chapter 6 of this Manual includes a brief discussion of novel issues in the context of complaint investigations.
10. In this instance, the CO and supervisor would coordinate with the Director of OFCCP’s Indian and Native American Employment Rights Program (INAERP) to address the impact of the contractor’s use of a publicly announced preference in employment to Indians and Native Americans.