Don't almost all affirmative action programs eventually become quota driven?

I was reading this thread re the debate about affirmative action programs, and wondered how it’s possible to have an affirmative action program without quotas (even if they aren’t called that) of some sort.

In practical terms how are you going to have any institutionally controlled program that mandates targeting aid to specified groups without a metric of some sort measuring its effectiveness?

An outreach program can be established that is measured simply on the efforts made to implement it, without requiring that any specific outcome result.

For example, a company that has traditionally recruited only at one or two large universities that have lower populations of targeted groups in engineering, computers, accounting, or whatever, can establish a policy of extending its recruiting drives to include smaller schools with higher numbers of the targeted groups among the pertinent departments and by sending out current employees who are members of the targeted group with the recruitment team. Businesses and realtors may make a point of advertising in media that is more likely seen or heard by the targeted group rather than only in mainstrean/broadcast media that may have a lower rate of subscription among the targeted group.

These are measurable as to the effort extended. It is then up to the targeted group to provide sufficient qualified candidates to pass through the recruitment process without lowering standards.

This plan does not work as well in education, which is where most of the Affirmative Action battles are currently being fought, of course. However, a law that prohibits Affirmative Action while not distinguishing between quotas and outreach is seriously flawed.

And I think it’s a damn shame that outreach programs get lumped under the heading of AA. I think there would be a LOT more support for these programs if they weren’t.

Outreach was the original AA.

Quotas did not show up until the very early 1970s when a couple of court decisions against fire and police companies ordered quotas based on the fact that the rates of recruitment and promotion was so slow that outreach could not redress any imbalance for a period of decades in cities that already had majority or very large minority targeted populations.