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Section IV: Other Items of Interest Program Activity: Corporate Services

Effective decision making supported through integrated advice and information strategies and the provision of high quality corporate services.

Financial Resources ($ thousands)

Corporate Services
Planned Spending Authorities Actual Spending
Corporate Management 2,209 5,405 4,540
Corporate Administration 13,825 18,455 17,672
Human Resources 2,876 4,958 4,259
Registrar 1,396 6,084 5,292
Total: Corporate Services 20,306 34,902 31,763

Human Resources (FTEs)

Planned Actual Difference
198 213 15

Corporate Services contribute to the development, administration and delivery of the School’s learning activities through the provision of sound corporate planning; financial, human resources and information management; information technology; registration services; administrative and materiel management services. Corporate Services also contribute to promoting modern management practices and ensure that the School implements new government initiatives and complies with all government policies and directives. Highlighted below are the details of the results achieved in 2006-07 by Program Sub-Activity.

Corporate governance enables the School to meet its strategic objectives
The School started the revitalization of its Board of Governors, including the appointment of new members. New Board members were provided with an orientation session on the School’s operations to assist them in their responsibilities. Furthermore, a calendar of meetings was defined and was articulated around the School’s planning and reporting cycle.

Effective policy & planning advice/analysis support corporate decision-making process
In 2006-07, the School implemented and managed an integrated business planning process that is fully aligned with its Program Activity Architecture (PAA). Senior personnel performance was measured against key commitments from this planning exercise. Human resources will be fully integrated into the process over the next fiscal year.

Effective Communication and Marketing Support the School Agenda
In 2006-2007, a communications plan was implemented to increase horizontal communication processes, thereby facilitating information flow between the Treasury Board portfolio, clients, portfolio directors and employees. This was supported by quarterly promotional campaigns, monthly President’s Newsletters, Spotlight on Learning newsletters and regional bulletins, as well as the development of a promotional briefing book for the Client Contact Centre (Registrar).

Improvements to the intranet site were made following a user feedback survey, and key messaging on School priorities was updated regularly for use by employees. The internet web site was restructured to coordinate with the division of learning populations, allowing clients to more easily access the information they sought.

A marketing strategy was developed in 2006-2007 to position the School as a key provider of learning in the Public Service, promote an understanding of continuous learning, build stronger relationships with organizations, functional communities and learner and develop better intelligence on clients, markets and demographics.

Registration and Learner Reporting
In 2006-2007, the School registered 90,000 students to 940 courses in 1,666 offerings.  Monthly reports were provided to all departments and agencies summarizing their employees’ participation on School learning activities, and documenting results for required training courses.

The School has also been planning and developing a new integrated registration system. In March 2007, the Preliminary Project Approval (the first phase of approbations) was approved by the Treasury Board. Tabling of the Effective Project Approval (second phase) is expected for early 2008.

Learning Evaluation & Quality Assurance
Level 1 (Reaction) evaluation instruments were refined and updated, a process that included significant consultations with the School’s stakeholders. A pilot of online administration of level 1 evaluations was successfully undertaken, and full implementation is planned for 2007-08 using the updated version of the Level 1 reaction questionnaires. Best practices for levels 2 (Learning) and Level 3 (Transfer) were researched and documented. 

Quality assessment standards for the School’s learning initiatives were established and a Performance Measurement Framework is currently underway, as per the timeline set out by the Treasury Board Secretariat (implementation of Step 2 of the Management, Resources, and Results Structure). A risk-based, multi-year corporate evaluation plan has been drafted and evaluations of key priorities for the School were initiated. For example, ongoing evaluation-related work is being conducted for the Orientation to the Public Service program and for the School’s work under the Action Plan for Official Languages (APOL).

High quality corporate services and advice enables the School to meet its objectives
Information Technology (IT) and Information Management (IM)
The School’s IT infrastructure was renewed and an evergreen plan for the entire infrastructure was developed. A strategic service agreement was signed with Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) for the transfer of IT infrastructure and supporting services in the fall of 2006.

During the reporting period, the School started implementing the Government-wide shared system for web content management. The information classification structure was redesigned in preparation for the implementation of the Records, Document and Information Management System (RDIMS) pilot project.

An integrated Information Management/Information Technology plan was developed and was approved by Treasury Board Secretariat/Chief Information Officer Branch as part of the Integrated Learner Management System initiative.

Facilities and Assets Management
A Business Continuity Policy was developed for the School. A response guide is currently being finalized, which will lead the way for the establishment of a business continuity steering committee and readiness team.

In collaboration with PWGSC, a five year National Accommodation plan was developed and is now being implemented. As part of a review of responsibilities for Access to Information and Privacy (ATIP), training and awareness activities were conducted as required.

Business Improvement & Financial Services
During 2006-07 the Comptrollership and Quality Assurance division completed the documentation and internal controls testing of approximately 30 financial processes related to the preparation of Financial Statements. The implementation of the internal control system was initiated and procedures and activities are ongoing. Business process improvement measures have been implemented to improve the School’s financial management and address audit readiness recommendations, which represents the first step towards the production of auditable financial statements.

A review of costing practices was undertaken, which included capacity review and staff engagement. A working group was established to review the needs and challenges associated with the development of a framework for a standardized costing model. Testing of the new model should occur in the fall of 2007, with full implementation scheduled for 2008-09.

Human Resources are managed effectively and strategically in support of corporate objectives
The School has been focusing on developing corporate staffing plans for critical talent including official languages. In 2006-07, ten collective processes were undertaken, resulting in 120 appointments. This contributed to reducing the use of temporary staffing measures, including acting appointments. Furthermore, 18 other collective processes have been identified for the coming fiscal years and will meet 80% of the School’s staffing requirements.

As of March 31st, 2007, 99% of the employees met the language requirements of their positions and over 90% of the positions were identified as bilingual.

Workforce analysis at the end of the reporting period indicated that, with respect to employment equity, visible minorities were the only group with an identified gap. On that front, the School is slightly under-represented with 6.1% compared to 7.6% of workforce availability. Through the upcoming collective processes, sub-delegated managers will be mandated to ensure that employment equity needs are taken into consideration by establishing appointment targets for each occupational group. The Employment Equity plan is also comprised of four other activities such as communication, training, policies and reporting which will be implemented in 2007-08 in collaboration with bargaining agents.

The School is committed to create a participatory and informal climate and culture, where employees feel included in its operations. To that effect, “Welcome to the School” sessions for new employees were conducted and continue to be held three times a year and contribute to employees’ understanding of the School’s strategic direction. Furthermore, key commitments for all executives were posted on the intranet, contributing to communicating the School’s priorities. To ensure that employees make the most of the learning opportunities available to them, all executives have committed in their Performance Management Agreements to developing learning plans with their employees.

Internal conflict resolution
Working with Human Resources, the Informal Conflict Management System (ICMS) was incorporated into the formal grievance and complaint processes. The services of ICMS are offered to employees throughout the redress process. The role of ICMS and the Ombudsman office has been communicated out to staff across the country, and sessions on ICMS training have been developed and piloted during the reporting period. In addition, an ICMS complaint process for the School’s clients and partners is being established.

Audits are used to improve departmental policies, programs and management
An internal audit report on procurement, initiated in 2005 (as a pilot project in partnership with the Department of Finance/Treasury Board Secretariat Internal Audit and Evaluation group), was received by the School in May 2007. While this is outside of the reporting period of 2006-07, most issues outlined in the audit report have already been addressed by the School, and an official management response is being developed.

The School has been working towards building its internal audit capacity to meet the requirements of the new Policy on Internal Audit, and an internal audit plan should be developed during the next planning period.

Other References:

MouseThe following provide useful links to the School’s website as well as important documents/publications.

Selected Websites

Canada School of Public Service

Treasury Board Secretariat

Canada Public Service Agency

Public Service Commission

Selected Documents – Building Blocks of a Modern Public Service

Treasury Board Policy on Learning, Training and Development

Public Service Modernization Act

Values & Ethics Code

Management Accountability Framework

Action Plan for Official Languages