2E02 Selection Procedures and Testing

As noted in subsection 2L05 below, the UGESP at 41 CFR 60-3.3A states that using any facially neutral selection procedure or criterion resulting in an adverse impact on hiring, promoting or other employment opportunities of members of any race, sex or ethnic group is discriminatory unless the contractor proves that its use is justified. Information that the CO will obtain to assess whether the contractor’s selection procedures or criteria have an adverse impact may include:

  • A written description of the selection steps and criteria applied;
  • A copy of the job description(s);
  • A copy of all records the contractor created to implement the selection procedures or criteria during the review period. Examples of these records include test results, individual test scores, instruction manuals related to testing or selection procedures, interview forms and interview results. When the selection process includes a battery of tests, the CO must be sure to collect the scores for each part of the battery, as well as the composite or overall scores, and learn how the contractor determined them. If the contractor is administering a test at a specific location, it is often helpful to see the testing location;
  • Signed interview statements from the contractor representatives who administered the selection procedure during the review period. The interviews need to include information about how the contractor administered the selection procedure, when they initiated the procedure, whether the contractor made any changes to the procedure, and when and why the changes were made. Additional information would include whether the contractor validated the selection procedure101 and whether there were any efforts to minimize the adverse impact. If efforts were made, COs must determine what those efforts were;
  • A copy of all job analyses or job information describing how the contractor established job requirements; and
  • Copies of any validation studies conducted by the contractor.

Example interview questions the CO will ask may include these areas of inquiry:

  • What are the selection procedures and criteria?
  • How does the contractor administer the selection procedures? Are interviews and tests conducted in similar settings? Are the interviews and tests conducted by multiple individuals? Who administers each procedure? Who is the decision maker for each procedure?
  • How did the contractor score or rate each selection procedure or criterion, or both? Is there a passing score set for each one? Is the score weighted? How was it weighted and why? Does the contractor score or rate the candidates cumulatively? If so, how?
  • How does the contractor select or “pass” candidates on the selection procedure (e.g., total test score, based on performance during an interview)?
  • How did the contractor come to use the selection procedure? If the procedure was a test, did the contractor develop it internally or was it developed by an external contractor or vendor? Did the contractor purchase a pencil and paper test?
  • If the CO has identified adverse impact at any stage of the selection process, is the use of the procedure or criterion responsible for that impact justified by business necessity? What has the contractor done to consider alternative procedures with less impact? What actions did the contractor take to validate the selection procedure or test? Are there any validation reports or studies? Did the contractor consider such reports or studies, or both?

101. Validation means demonstrating that using the selection procedure met the validation standards of the UGESP.