Adverse Impact Calculations: Sex
Adverse impact occurs when a decision, practice or policy has a disproportionately negative effect on a protected group even though the adverse impact may be unintentional.
EEOC’s Uniform Guidelines for Employee Selection Procedures:
“Adverse Impact: a substantially different rate of selection in hiring, promotion or other employment decision which works to the disadvantage of members of a race, sex or ethnic group.”
Rule of thumb for “substantially different rate”: any group’s selection rate that is less than four-fifths (4/5ths) or 80% of the selection rate for the group with the highest selection rate.
“4/5ths” or “80%” is a rule of thumb is not intended as a legal definition. Rather it is a practical means of keeping the attention of the enforcement agencies on serious discrepancies in rates of hiring, promotion and other selection decisions. When adverse impact exists, an organization may be vulnerable to charges of discrimination.