California SB 973 requires employers that (1) file EEO-1 reports and (2) employ more than 100 employees to submit data to the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) annually that shows pay by race and gender for their California employees. It was signed into law on September 30, 2020, and DFEH has been busy providing guidance to employers and preparing the pay data reporting portal.

Additional — perhaps final — guidance was released on February 1. DFEH posted FAQs addressing Professional Employer Organizations and Acquisitions, Mergers, and Spinoffs.

It also released a 68-page User Guide that discuss the mechanics of data submission and provided templates (both in Excel and CSV format) to assist employers in submitting their required pay data.

Key takeaways from the new guidance include:

  • The pay data report will be finalized as a line-by-line report using the provided templates (either in Excel or CSV) or manual entry, depending on the employer’s preference.
  • Each employer will upload only one file.
  • Section One of the file will include overall company information, such as the snapshot period’s begin and end dates, total U.S. and California employees, total U.S. and California establishments.
  • Section Two will include information about each establishment and the employee detail within each establishment.
  • For each establishment, the employer will enter a separate line indicating the number of employees falling into each of the possible 2,520 combinations of job category, pay band, and race/ethnicity/sex.
  • DFEH reiterated that employers’ pay data reporting information will not be made public.

The Data Submission Portal will open on February 15, 2021, and submission is required by March 31.