Blog Home

Diversity and Pay Reporting in California

Your guide to understanding SB 973 and its application to the entertainment industry
March 6, 2021

Joseph Scudiero

When California signed Senate Bill 973 on September 30, 2020, it created a significant change for companies within the state – including the entertainment industry. The new legislation now requires all private companies with 100 or more employees to report annual employee pay data broken down by race, ethnicity, and sex to the Department of Fair Employment and House (DFEH).

The intent of this change is to identify pay wage gaps in workplaces so as to better enforce equal pay and discrimination laws. Considering the entertainment industry is one of the largest employment sectors in California, it’s important that studios, production companies, and other entities understand the new requirements – which come with a learning curve.

To help with the upcoming March 31st deadline, we have prepared some FAQs to help better understand SB 973 and how it applies to the entertainment industry. Here is also a snapshot guide to some of the key components of the legislation to be aware of.

Employee Demographics and Pay Bands

Companies will have to report the number of employees by race, ethnicity and sex via 10 pre-determined job categories:

  • Executive or senior level officials and managers
  • First or mid-level officials and managers
  • Professionals
  • Technicians
  • Sales workers
  • Administrative support workers
  • Craft workers
  • Operatives
  • Laborers and helpers
  • Service workers

In addition, companies will have to report the number of employees by race, ethnicity, and sex across certain pay bands used by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Because the job categories are broad, and the entertainment industry is home to occupations not necessarily designed for this style of organization, it’s important for companies to determine early on – as best as possible – what roles should be assigned to which job categories. For example: In which category does a production designer go? A special effects designer? A script supervisor? Invest time and thought into making those executive decisions to make reporting easier now and in the future.

Companies should also be prepared for how the new legislation differs from its federal counterpart, known as the EEO-1 Report, which several entertainment employers are also obligated to file. While SB 973 resembles the EEO-1 Report in some respects, SB 973 is broader and the reporting differs in material ways. That means companies need to be prepared to pull together a lot more data (particularly pay data) than they have in the past.

Structuring, Organizing, and Understanding the Data

Because of the unique way companies within the entertainment industry can be structured, entities – especially studios – need to determine how they will organize their information for reporting purposes. For example, the studio environment contains many different entities and divisions. Studios and production companies will need to determine if each unit should file separately? Does the studio or production company submit as one company and include the data for all its other units? How a studio or production company reports the data also may have labor law implications in other areas. Companies also need to be sure to understand how they will proceed in order to avoid any gaps that could risk violations and penalties.

Furthermore, while companies may already have reporting infrastructure in place to provide the previously required demographic information, that may not be the case for the new pay and hours data. It may be accessible but may exist in different systems and not organized in a way that will make it easy to report. All companies that fall under the purview of this new legislation should prepare for some front-end work this year. To help support the industry, Entertainment Partners has created a Diversity Management solution to give studios and production companies the tools to comply with SB 973.

EP’s solution is the only product designed specifically for the entertainment industry that can provide studios and production companies with the broad range of demographic and pay information necessary to comply with SB 973. To learn more about the EP Diversity Management solution, or for questions related to the new reporting required by SB 973, click the contact us button to submit a request.

Related Content

SB 973, California Pay Data Reporting Law FAQs

3/6/2021
The new pay data reporting law and its impact on the entertainment industry

Entertainment Partners Introduces Wage Data Reporting Solution

3/26/2021
EP offers new service to help employers prepare their SB 973 reporting
Getting Ahead of the CCPA Panel

Getting Ahead of the Privacy Curve

4/22/2020
Understanding the CCPA and how to keep your privacy protected when working remotely
Topic: Legal
Watch

Legal Alert: DFEH Offers Further Guidance on SB 973 Reporting

3/18/2021
Resources aid studios and production companies with compliance as California enforces new pay data...
Topic: Legal
More
Pantea Ahmadi and Joe Scudiero

SB 973's Impact on the Entertainment Industry

3/15/2021
How California’s new pay data reporting legislation, SB 973, applys to the entertainment industry
Topic: Legal
Watch

California Production Can Begin June 12, but Officials Leave Rules Up to the Industry

6/5/2020
The industry is still working on getting buy-in for all parties to coalesce around one set of rules

5 Things to Know Before Relocating for Your Next Job

7/20/2021
What production workers need to consider before moving to a new state
Equity Financing Panel-thumbnail

Film Financing Explained: Equity Financing

7/15/2021
James Schamus and Michael Helfant join our panel to share expert advice on funding film and television...

The Beginner’s Guide to Equity Financing

7/15/2021
Expert advice to help producers secure funding for their next project
Anthony De La Rosa EP Residuals

The Beginner's Guide to Film and Television Residuals

7/7/2021
Important details every producer should know as they budget for their next project
Celebrating Pride Month Panel

Celebrating Pride Month and LGBTQ+ Film and Television

6/24/2021
Celebrate Pride month with us as our panel of groundbreaking producers and activists discuss the past,...

Diversifying Hollywood Through Better Hiring and Training

6/22/2021
How new legislation and production incentives are promoting diversity and inclusion

Meet the Producer

6/15/2021
From concept to the red carpet, the producer is there to keep the production moving forward
Sarah Westman-liu and Jennifer Liscio

Canadian Incentives and Legislation News

6/10/2021
The latest updates on incentives, CRA guidance on COVID-19 related costs, and more!

Choosing the Right Production Incentives

6/2/2021
5 questions to ask when selecting your next incentive-based filming location

The Path to Better Diversity and Inclusion in Hollywood

5/25/2021
How production incentives are helping to promote inclusivity

Innovations in Production Incentives

4/27/2021
How emerging local initiatives are driving productions to new jurisdictions

The Beginner's Guide to Production Financing

4/6/2021
What to know before starting your next film or television project

Editorial Spotlight: Dana Belcastro

3/30/2021
Producer and executive, Dana Belcastro, on how women are changing the way Hollywood does business

Editorial Spotlight: Nancy Savoca

3/23/2021
In celebration of Women's History Month, director and producer, Nancy Savoca, shares her experience in...

Women Impacting Hollywood

3/16/2021
From Storytelling to Set Design, Female Voices are Shaping Entertainment

Returning to Production: Hair and Makeup Teams Apply COVID-19 Protocols to Life on Set

2/26/2021
Getting back to work: a look inside set life during COVID-19
Pantea Ahmadi and Alan Wu

California & New York Employment and Privacy Legislation Changes in 2021

1/27/2021
EP's Legal team breaks down important legislation changes impacting production hubs
Topic: Legal
Watch

How Television Crews Are Getting Back to Work

1/12/2021
A Conversation with Melissa Lintinger, SVP of Production Finance, NBCU
Master Series Return to Work Agreement Panel

Understanding the COVID-19 Return-To-Work Labor Agreement

11/12/2020
EP's Legal experts explain the entertainment industry's safety guidelines
Pressing Play in Eastern Canada Panel

Pressing Play in Canada: From Nunavut to Nova Scotia, Production Returns to the Eastern Provinces!

10/29/2020
Producers from across Eastern Canada come together to discuss the exciting work coming out of the...
Nordic Countries Lead Production Return from COVID-19 panel

From Domestic TV to Mission Impossible 7: Nordic Countries Lead Production Return from COVID-19

10/15/2020
Lessons learned about producing through a pandemic, and how the Nordic countries got it right

Entertainment Partners Launches Production Finance Studio

10/7/2020
New digital solution helps entertainment industry comply with guidelines, reopen safely

Film Tax Credit Programs Face Uncertain Future

8/31/2020
Tax incentive programs draw high profile productions, cautious optimism for California
Covid impact on the workplace panel

Discussing the Impact of COVID-19 on the Workplace

8/20/2020
What considerations employers should take into account when returning to the workplace

The Source Podcast: Featuring Davida Lara

8/3/2020
Payroll transformations: From payments to hiring

Below The Line Podcast Season 6 Episode 6: COVID-19 and Central Casting

7/27/2020
A podcast about the film industry: stories from the set, told by crew
Power of global film production panel

The Power of Global Film Production in Economic Recovery from COVID-19

7/9/2020
How film & TV production will play a critical role in the economic recovery from COVID-19

What a Reopened Hollywood Looks Like: COVID-19 Officers on Set and Budgeting for More Shutdowns

6/4/2020
Hollywood is waiting and ready (as much as it can be) to get back to work

After the Coronavirus, the Race to Resume Film Production Goes Global

5/18/2020
Countries compete for attention as production ramps up following extended shutdowns

Production protocols on COVID-19 expected for early June

5/14/2020
Protocols on how to safely mount production in the time of coronavirus will be available by early June,...
Canada Production Panel

Canada: Production Before, During and After Covid-19

5/14/2020
What to expect with production in Canada post COVID-19
Production Finance Masters Panel

Production Finance Masters Share Career Defining Moves

5/12/2020
Industry veterans share tips and skills for advancing your career and driving success
Financing Landscape Panel

What Does the Financing Landscape Look Like Today?

5/5/2020
What to expect when seeking financing in the time of COVID-19

New Mexico-Produced Show Could be Model for Future Filming

5/3/2020
How self-contained filming locations prove valuable example for safe production practices
preparing for an audit panel

Lining Up Your Ducks for a Wage & Hour or MPIP Audit

4/16/2020
How to avoid common mistakes and ensure compliance when hiring employees
Topic: Legal
Watch
Workers Compensation and General Liability Panel

Insurance: A View of Workers Compensation and General Liability in Light of COVID-19

4/16/2020
Why insurance and workers compensation matter during the pandemic

AB5 in the Age of Coronavirus: Independent Contractors vs Employees in a Time of Crisis

4/9/2020
Classifying California Workers as Independent Contractors vs Employees
Topic: Legal
Watch
California Production Panel

California Production and COVID-19

4/8/2020
A discussion of film, TV, and commercial production in California before, during, and after the pandemic