“Temp-to-perm” and “contract-to-hire” situations present a lot of challenges when it comes to regulatory compliance. The Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act (VEVRAA)
requires federal contractors to list all employment openings with the state ESDS with the exception of: 1) executive and senior management positions, 2) those positions that will be filled from within your organization, and 3) positions lasting three days or less. So unless the position falls under these exemptions, you are required to list it. The question is, at what point do you list it? When you are recruiting for the contract-to-hire position, or when you decide to convert it to a full-time position?
Theoretically, it is the point at which the position becomes a “payroll position” or is paid within your payroll system, that triggers your obligation to list the position with the state ESDS. Technically speaking, your applicant pool would be based on that. However, having a 3-person applicant pool could be problematic and OFCCP may want to look at what they call the source pool - the candidates for the 3 contract-to-hire jobs that ultimately led to the hire - and may consider the source pool as the true applicant pool. So you will need to plan for that. If you are using a temporary or staffing agency to recruit for the contract-to-hire positions, you need to make sure that they are listing those positions with the ESDS.
As far as timeframe for conversion, there is no specified requirement for this. However, when evaluating a situation such as this, OFCCP may consider the length of time the 3 people were in a contract-to-hire status, if the employment relationship was truly that of a contractor as opposed to an employee, as well as your history of listing positions with the ESDS.
Similar questions on contract-to-hire and temporary workers have been answered in this forum by Bill Osterndorf and Debra Milstein Gardner before. I would encourage you to check out their responses as well. You can do a quick search for these related questions by entering “temporary” in the keywords field at the top of this page.