A CMCE on-site review follows the same process as the standard on-site review:
- Conduct entrance conference to discuss purpose of on-site review and areas of concern;
- Review of documents provided by the contractor and interviews with employees and management to eliminate, revise and confirm identified areas of concern;
- Identify additional information still needed for further review on areas remaining unresolved; and
- Conduct closing conference to address any unresolved areas of concern and discuss “next steps” in the evaluation process.
COs should review Chapter 2 for specific guidance on on-site reviews. One primary difference between the CMCE and standard on-site review is that a Regional Director may lead the opening and exit conferences in a CMCE on-site review. Another difference is that the main focus is on corporate management positions, though the scope may be broader than just the corporate headquarters facility.
4G00 Entrance Conference
COs must coordinate the entrance conference with top corporate officials and with the appropriate OFCCP regional office. Coordination with the regional office gives the Regional Director, or designee, the opportunity to attend the meeting. During the entrance conference, COs must obtain any clarification needed from the corporate organization (e.g., any organization charts not obtained to date) and any missing corporate background information the corporation may be able to provide (e.g., annual reports) prior to the on-site review. For example, corporate officials should be asked to explain and provide any documentation regarding:
- What the contractor values in candidates for middle and senior-level management positions;277 and
- Whether the contractor has developed any special EEO programs that it would like for OFCCP to consider as part of its corporate evaluation.
As in any other evaluation, COs should address any questions contractors have concerning the on-site and any other part of the evaluation process. COs must remind contractors that the on-site closing conference will be only an informal, preliminary discussion and that a formal exit conference will be scheduled when OFCCP is prepared to discuss evaluation findings, after having conducted off-site analysis.278
277. See FCCM 4G01 – Corporate Culture and FCCM 4H00 – General Qualification Standards.
278. See FCCM 4K – Completion of Compliance Evaluation: Exit Conference, Report Writing and Notice of Evaluation; also, FCCM 2D04 – Exit Conference.
4G01 Corporate Culture
Each corporation has distinct characteristics, not only in terms of how it conducts its major business and the skill backgrounds it needs, but also in terms of its management style and the behaviors it tends to foster and reward among its employees. The CO should gather information that indicates or describes the contractor’s corporate culture. This information may help the CO understand how the corporation makes management selection decisions. While some of this information may be found through research, including corporate self-descriptions, a CO will usually get a better picture during the on-site review, including through interviews and observations made while visiting on-site.
a. Corporate Business. The nature of a corporation’s business will tend to determine which corporate components are most essential to its profitability. For example, at a corporation that produces a fairly simple consumer product, marketing and sales are likely to be most central to profitability. On the other hand, in a corporation engaged in advanced research, engineering or scientific expertise is likely to be central to profitability. As a general rule, employees in those functional areas (which are also usually line rather than staff positions) will have better advancement potential.
b. Other Factors. There are usually meaningful differences in predominant management style and valued employee behavior between different corporations, even in the same industry. For example, one employer may value somewhat egalitarian management, while another prefers a more authoritarian approach. Or, one employer may value employee initiative and creativity, while another may place a higher value on mastery of standard procedures. Or, one employer may require rotational assignments (with or without frequent relocations or international stints) to develop a broad knowledge of the business, while another may more heavily weigh depth of expertise in the business area to be managed. Such differences also can extend to matters such as acceptable dress, expectations concerning uncompensated overtime, socializing outside work hours, etc.
These and other differences are not necessarily conscious ones. However, the degree of “fit” between what a corporation values and what an employee values or learns to value can influence whether a person will advance to management and, if so, what management level he or she is likely to reach. The importance of such “fit” usually increases with management level.
As with any review, a prime source of information will be interviews of both management and employees. Consistent with the guidance in Chapter 2, contractor representatives, including internal or external attorneys or external consultants, may be present during interviews of management and supervisory employees.279 However, if a CO is interviewing a management or supervisory employee who is also a complainant or potential complainant, or is being interviewed in his or her capacity as an employee rather than a management official, the CO must conduct the interview in private. The determination of whether the management employee is a potential complainant or victim and whether the contractor’s representative can be present is fact-specific. Therefore, COs should consult with the RSOL and the national office prior to engaging in these types of interviews.
As always, there will be some common questions. In addition, COs should tailor interviews to the specific areas of concern being investigated. Likewise, a CO must take care to select individuals for interviews who have knowledge or experience in the relevant areas of concern. In all cases, a CO should start with key corporate personnel and human resources officials to discuss and develop an understanding of corporate policies and practices in the following major areas:
- The contractor’s middle and senior-level management positions and how the contractor fills them;280
- The use of outside hiring to fill middle and senior management positions and how the contractor locates and screens candidates;281
- The use of internal hiring for these positions;
- The “pool” or pools for these positions;282
- The mechanisms the contractor uses to identify and develop candidates for those positions, both at corporate headquarters and at subordinate establishments;283 and
- The reward systems, both monetary and nonmonetary, the contractor uses to retain key personnel.284
The CO should also ask for all documentation, whether written or electronic, of policies and practices relevant to these areas that the contractor has not already provided. This includes any personnel and human resource manuals, supervisory and employee handbooks, and any other internal publications that might be relevant.
279. FCCM 2F – Interviews.
280. FCCM 4D00 – Analysis of Nonfavored Groups’ Management Level Participation.
281. FCCM 4H01 – External Hires.
282. FCCM 4D01 – Functional Areas; Subsection 5H02- Internal Development.
283. FCCM 4H04 – Internal Development.
284. FCCM 4I – Onsite: Retention.