EEOC picEarlier this year, the EEOC announced a proposed revision to the existing Employer Information Report – commonly known as the EEO-1 Report. EEOC’s announcement was made in conjunction with the White House commemoration of the 7th anniversary of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which addressed the statute of limitations for presenting an equal-pay lawsuit. The proposed changes to the EEO-1 would require employers with more than 100 employees to report data concerning employees’ pay and hours worked, in addition to data on race, ethnicity, and sex by job category beginning with the 2017 reporting cycle. According to EEOC Chair Jenny R. Yang, “this information will assist employers in evaluating their pay practices” and facilitate voluntary compliance. Moreover, EEOC has expressed its focus on pay inequality as one of its top enforcement priorities.

Employers have expressed wide-ranging concerns from the time commitment and burden of collecting and reporting this information to privacy and confidentiality concerns. Moreover, according to the EEOC’s proposal, the Commission would have access to the data for pay discrimination enforcement purposes and targeted investigations. Given the proposal’s potential impact on business operations, employers need to closely monitor this issue.

Let Your Voice Be Heard. Employers potentially affected by this proposal may submit comments by April 1, 2016 electronically or in writing.

Conduct Self-Evaluation of Pay Practices under Attorney-Client Privilege. Employers should also proactively address potential pay disparities with the assistance of an attorney’s legal advice.

Work with IT Professionals and Payroll Vendors. The EEOC proposal may require new programs to collect the required data. Start the conversation regarding cost and management of this potential project now with IT professionals and payroll vendors.