What is a linkage agreement?

Throughout 2011 via several NPRNs, the OFCCP has continued to communicate the idea of companies creating linkage agreements. But what does this mean? The official definition states: “Linkage is the connection between contractors and appropriate recruitment and/or training sources. When an underutilization of minorities or women in a job group is found and there are recruitment/training resources available that are able to refer qualified applicants to the contractor for consideration, the EOS will attempt in a Letter of Commitment or Conciliation Agreement to execute a linkage agreement with the contractor.” The good news is that these linkage agreements can be put in place long before an audit or Conciliation Agreement is mandated. Both the NPRN associated with VEVRAA and now the new NPRM regarding Section 503 make specific suggestions as to where federal contractors can go to identify organizations with which they can form linkage agreements.

Perhaps the most critical organizations contractors can reach out to are the local OneStop office where jobs are being offered. In a similar fashion, with the NPRN to update Section 503, contractors can reach out to local state agencies of Vocational Rehabilitation as well as working with the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation (CSAVR) CSAVR has developed a number of employer-friendly resources to assist employers with the challenges related to hiring job candidates with disabilities. Local Community Based Organizations (CBOs) catering to special interest groups are also an excellent source of organizations for outreach. Finally, accessing the National Resource Directory (https://www.nationalresourcedirectory.gov) can provide links to organizations that will help contractors fulfill their outreach obligations. America’s Job Exchange maintains a list of diversity organizations, and is actively involved in outreach to CBOs and special interest groups. Sourcing in the new year will mean new ideas and ways to establish your company as a diveristy-focused employer.

Allow us to help you recuit more effectively and select and establish the relationships to ensure when the OFCCP comes calling your bases are covered.

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