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Section I – Overview

Minister’s Message

As President of the Treasury Board of Canada, I am pleased to present the 2007–2008 Departmental Performance Report of the Canada Public Service Agency.The Honourable Vic Toews

For 140 years, the Public Service of Canada has been loyally serving governments of the day in helping to deliver the many policies, programs and services that make a difference in the lives of Canadians. It is Canada’s largest employer, offering a vast array of career opportunities and one of the most dynamic work environments in the country. 

The Public Service is also an institution that is in transition. Shifting demographics and global contexts, coupled with fast-paced change domestically, require a Public Service that is multi-skilled, nimble and positioned to take on challenges and opportunities. For this reason, a process of modernizing human resources management was initiated a number of years ago, setting the Public Service on a path of revitalization and renewal of its greatest asset—its people.

The Canada Public Service Agency plays a focal point role in these efforts through its policy and direction-setting responsibilities, by supporting departments in achieving people management excellence and by ensuring the ongoing integrity and sustainability of the Public Service.

Public and private sector organizations within Canada and around the world have long understood that people management is the foundation for organizational success. This is no different in the Public Service and has never been more important than it is today. I invite you to visit http://www.psagency.gc.ca to follow the progress of the Canada Public Service Agency in leading our efforts as we strive toward this fundamental goal.

The paper version was signed by

Vic Toews, P.C., Q.C., M.P.
President of the Treasury Board


Management Representation Statement

I submit for tabling in Parliament the 2007–08 Departmental Performance Report for the Canada Public Service Agency.

This document has been prepared based on the reporting principles contained in the Guide for the Preparation of Part III of the 2007–08 Estimates: Reports on Plans and Priorities and Departmental Performance Reports.

It adheres to the specific reporting requirements outlined in the Treasury Board Secretariat guidance.

It is based on the department’s approved Strategic Outcome(s) and Program Activity Architecture that were approved by the Treasury Board.

It presents consistent, comprehensive, balanced and reliable information.

It provides a basis of accountability for the results achieved with the resources and authorities entrusted to it.

It reports finances based on approved numbers from the Estimates and the Public Accounts of Canada.

 

The paper version was signed by

Nicole Jauvin, President
Canada Public Service Agency


Summary Information

Agency’s raison d’tre

The Public Service Human Resources Management Agency of Canada, now referred to as the Canada Public Service Agency serves as the focal point and centre of expertise for the people management of the federal public service. Its core objective is to work toward establishing a public service workforce and workplace that is second to none.

To effectively pursue its mandate, the Agency aims to achieve the following strategic outcome as identified on page 8 of the 2007–08 Report on Plans and Priorities:

A modern, professional public service dedicated to the public interest and supporting ministers in democratic governance, representative of the Canadian public and serving Canadians with excellence in the official language of their choice, with employees effectively and ethically led in a high-quality work environment respectful of their linguistic rights.

In striving toward this goal, the Agency exercises leadership in areas such as classification, learning, leadership, management of executives, official languages, values and ethics, employment equity and employment policies. It also exercises leadership by building and supporting partnerships, including supporting key governance instruments such as the Prime Minister’s Advisory Committee on the Public Service and the Deputy Ministers’ Committee on Public Service Renewal. The Agency delivers services that support public servants, managers and the people management community, including a suite of leadership development and interchange programs, executive staffing at the Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) level, government-wide awards and recognition programs, and capacity building across a broad range of people management issues and areas. The Agency also ensures the ongoing integrity and sustainability of the people management system through monitoring, measuring and reporting, research, and transformational projects such as work on human resources (HR) business process re-engineering. These are the tools the Agency uses to support federal departments, agencies and institutions in delivering advice to the Government and services to Canadians.

The legal mandate of the Agency flows from the powers delegated to it by the Treasury Board in the Financial Administration Act over the following:

  • human resources management;
  • official languages;
  • employment equity; and
  • values and ethics.

These powers are supplemented by the Agency’s responsibilities under these statutes:

  • Public Service Modernization Act;
  • Public Service Employment Act;
  • Official Languages Act;
  • Public Service Labour Relations Act;
  • Employment Equity Act; and
  • Public Servants Disclosure Protection Act.

These powers define the Agency’s people management responsibilities for the Public Service.

Financial Resources

The following table summarizes the total financial resources the Agency managed in 2007–08.


2007–08 ($ thousands)

Planned Spending

Total Authorities

Actual Spending

69,260

96,931 (a)

93,379 (b)


(a) The difference of $27.6M between the authorities of $96.9M and the planned spending of $69.3M is mainly attributable to the increase in funding of $17.4M to continue human resources management modernization, $4.5M for the classification program, $2.8M for activities to implement the Public Service Modernization Act and $2.9M for implementation of the Public Servants Disclosure Protection Act.

(b) Actual spending of $93.4M includes operating expenditures of $6.1M for participants in leadership programs, and $9.3M for corporate services provided by the Department of Finance.

Total authorities of $96.9M less actual spending of $93.4M results in lapsing funds of $3.5M.

Human Resources

The following table summarizes the total human resources the Agency managed in 2007–08.


2007–08

Planned

Actual

Difference

490

679 (c)

189


Planned and actual human resources include 83 full-time equivalents (FTEs) in the Department of Finance who provide corporate services to the Agency.

(c) Reported FTEs do not include the 94 FTEs participating in leadership development programs, although part of their salaries is included in actual expenditures.

Agency Program Activity Architecture

In 2007–08, the Agency’s priorities and plans were found in three interrelated program activities. Each is composed of key results areas as shown in the following chart. The chart matches page 8 of the 2007–08 Report on Plans and Priorities.

All program activities of the Agency contribute to the achievement of the Government of Canada outcome area of Government Affairs.

Agency Program Activity Architecture

Agency Planned and Actual Spending by Program Activity

The following table identifies the planned and actual 2007–08 spending for each of the Agency’s program activities and identifies priorities for each.


Strategic Outcome: A modern, professional Public Service dedicated to the public interest and supporting ministers in democratic governance, representative of the Canadian public and serving Canadians with excellence in the official language of their choice, with employees effectively and ethically led in a high-quality work environment respectful of their linguistic rights.

Program Activity

Key Results Areas from
the Report on Plans and Priorities

Planned Spending ($000)

Total Authorities ($000)

Actual Spending ($000)

1. Modernized HR management and strengthened accountability 1.1. Enable and embed HR modernization and Public Service renewal

1.2. Modernize the Public Service Classification System

1.3. Strengthen HR planning, accountability, reporting and transparency

15,115

42,518

41,562

2. Effective, ethical leadership and a quality work environment 2.1. Foster strong, effective learning and ongoing leadership renewal

2.2. Promote and embed Public Service values and ethics at all levels

42,907

44,027

41,908

3. A representative and accessible Public Service 3.1. Achieve and maintain employment equity plans and priorities

3.2. Achieve and maintain official languages plans and priorities

11,238

10,386

9,909

Total for Agency   69,260 96,931 93,379
Note: Totals may differ between and within tables due to rounding.

Departmental Performance

Highlights of the Agency’s Context and Performance

As noted in the Clerk of the Privy Council’s Fifteenth Annual Report to the Prime Minister on the Public Service of Canada, major demographic pressures face the federal public service, including the following:

  • 66 percent of the Public Service is over 40 years old, compared with 42 percent in 1983;
  • more than 25 percent of all public servants and almost 50 percent of current executives will be eligible to retire without penalty by 2012; and
  • Canada is becoming more diverse and the Public Service needs to continue to build on the significant improvements it has already made to reflect this growing diversity.

To address these demographic pressures, the Clerk of the Privy Council has identified Public Service renewal as a priority for all departments and agencies. Public Service renewal aims to make improvements in the following broad areas:

  • planning: integrating business and HR planning to ensure capacity is in place to meet the needs of the Government and Canadians;
  • recruitment: renewing and sustaining capacity at all levels to ensure the Public Service has the right people and skills it needs now and in the future;
  • employee development: fostering leadership at all levels and ensuring that employees have meaningful work to do in a supportive environment; and
  • enabling infrastructure: putting in place the systems and processes to support efficient, user-friendly planning, recruitment and development.

As the focal point for people management in the federal public service, the Canada Public Service Agency has a crucial role to play in supporting Public Service renewal. The Agency has therefore focused on and integrated Public Service renewal as the driver for all of its activities. In order to deliver results, the Agency works in close collaboration with the Treasury Board Secretariat, the Public Service Commission, the Canada School of Public Service, and other departments and agencies with different accountabilities in the human resources equation.

What follows is a high-level account, organized by program activity, of the results the Agency has achieved in its efforts to support Public Service renewal and deliver on its plans and priorities. Details are outlined in Section II of this document. Examples of lessons learned are also identified.

Program Activity 1. Modernized HR management and strengthened accountability.

Results: The Agency, in partnership with the Public Service Commission, held a series of workshops for managers across the country on the Public Service Modernization Act and staffing flexibilities under the Act. The Agency has also helped build organizational capacity by simplifying human resources management processes. Other initiatives have created Public Service-wide efficiencies; for instance, the Agency developed an Employee Passport to transfer electronic employee records securely between departments. It has also reduced the number of work descriptions from 1,500 to 45, thus reducing the workload of managers and improving the consistency of job evaluations.

Example of lessons learned: We learned that departments and agencies are vitally interested in understanding best practices, rather than receiving direction that constrains their actions. As a result, we developed the Gold Standard for executive performance management, a key element in promoting excellence in the Public Service, to provide best practices to departments.

Program Activity 2. Effective, ethical leadership and a quality work environment.

Results: A disclosure regime created by the Public Servants Disclosure Protection Act has been implemented, including the establishment of Public Sector Integrity Canada.  Essential training initiatives and support for departmental Senior Officers responsible for disclosure have been developed and delivered. These initiatives have established a secure and confidential process for public servants to disclose serious wrongdoing in the workplace and protect them from acts of reprisal.

Deputy ministers have increased authority to manage executive human resources and were provided with an Assistant Deputy Minister talent management tool that has helped support them with this accountability. The Agency has also supported improved management of Public Service executives through implementation of the Policy on the Management of Executives. Revisions to the Management Accountability Framework assessment tool for values and ethics are providing consistent and credible performance evidence that is systematically collected and used for departmental performance monitoring and deputy minister accountability.

Example of lessons learned: The trend of high turnover in human resources professionals in departments caused concern for sustaining adequate services to individuals participating in the Management Trainee Program. As a result, the Management Trainee Program Guide was developed to provide departments/agencies with guidelines on required learning, training and development.

Program Activity 3. A representative and accessible Public Service.

Results: A greater diversity of views linguistically, geographically and culturally contributes to the development of better policies, improved and more responsive program design, and the delivery of more effective services for all Canadians. The Agency’s efforts in delivering conferences and workshops raised the awareness and provided tools to 400 national managers related to policies on and expectations for employment equity and duty to accommodate. Using technology, an official language dashboard was launched to provide departments and agencies with a planning tool and a vehicle for auditing their performance on official languages.

Example of lessons learned: Rights and obligations under the Official Languages Act are sometimes misunderstood, and misperceptions about legal and policy obligations persist within and outside the Public Service. This has been addressed at numerous events that promoted sharing of best practices from both national and regional perspectives, with participation from human resources specialists, training coordinators, official language specialists and managers.

From an overall Agency perspective, a survey of the Agency’s clients revealed high levels of client satisfaction with the Agency. This is an indication that the Agency is delivering results in its efforts to support departments and agencies. A great majority of respondents (84 percent) were satisfied with the overall quality of the programs, tools and services offered by the Agency. As well, 77 percent of respondents agreed that the programs, tools and services offered by the Agency met their needs.

That said, the Agency recognizes that there are areas where more work remains to be done. As part of building an effective, enabling HR infrastructure, the Agency is focusing on reducing the reporting burden it places on departments and agencies. While some progress has been made in reducing this burden, the Agency needs more focused efforts in the next year to align and streamline reporting requirements. To this end, in 2008–09 it will initiate a three-pronged strategy to streamline HR-related reporting and ensure value-added and outcomes-based measurement. The Agency is also aiming to develop a portfolio-based approach to assessing departmental performance of people management in order to provide better support to deputy ministers and improve its understanding of the state of people management. In this regard, efforts are also under way to look at the core variables of successful people management and to use this information to guide survey research efforts, as well as potentially inform redesign of people management elements of the Management Accountability Framework.


Agency Priorities and Performance Status

The following table provides a quick snapshot of the Agency’s priorities as identified in the Agency’s 2007–08 Report on Plans and Priorities and the performance status associated with each priority.

name

Type

Performance Status

1. Modernized HR management and strengthened accountability

Ongoing

Progressed as planned with challenges in specific areas

1.1 Enabling and embedding HR modernization and Public Service renewal

  • HR modernization
  • Renewal of the Public Service

 

Ongoing

Ongoing

Progressed as planned

1.2 Modernize the Public Service classification system

  • Policies and guidelines are renewed
  • Classification learning programs and support services are provided
  • Effective monitoring and cost-tracking systems are in place

 

Spring–Winter 2007

2007–08

2007–09

Progressed as planned with challenges in specific areas

1.3 Strengthen HR accountability, performance measurement and reporting

  • Setting expectations for HR management across the Public Service
  • Improved information management through the Employee Passport initiative to transfer electronic employee records securely between departments
  • Assessing and enhancing HR management across the Public Service
  • Reporting on HR management across the Public Service

 

2007–08 Ongoing

2007–08

2007–08 Ongoing

2007–08 Ongoing

Progressed as planned with challenges in specific areas

 


name

Type

Performance Status

2. Effective, ethical leadership and a quality work environment

Ongoing

Progressed as planned with challenges in specific areas

2.1 Foster ongoing leadership renewal and strong, effective learning

  • Renewed management of the executive cadre, supporting Public Service renewal and increased deputy head delegation and accountability
  • Enhanced leadership development programs and initiatives, contributing to renewal of the Public Service
  • Effective implementation of the Policy on Learning, Training and Development

 

2007–09

2007–09

2007–09 Ongoing

Progressed as planned with challenges in specific areas

2.2 Promote and embed Public Service values and ethics at all levels

  • Through a comprehensive and sustained learning and communications strategy, create widespread employee awareness, understanding and application of Public Service values and ethics, including obligations under the Values and Ethics Code for the Public Service
  • Additional support is provided to departments and agencies for meeting their accountabilities
  • Key Treasury Board policies that support a culture of Public Service values and ethics are in place and effectively implemented
  • Support is provided to government on legislation for disclosure of wrongdoing, including protection from reprisal for those who make disclosure

 

2007–09

2007–09

2007–09

2007–09

Progressed as planned with challenges in specific areas

 


name

Type

Performance Status

3. A representative and accessible Public Service

Ongoing

Progressed as planned with challenges in specific areas

3.1 Achieve and maintain employment equity plans and priorities

  • Public Service is representative and inclusive
  • The public service has access to modern and fully integrated employment equity policies, directives, tools and support
  • Results are more transparent and accessible to Canadians

 

2007–08 Ongoing

2007–08 Ongoing

Ongoing

Progressed as planned with challenges in specific areas

3.2 Preserve and achieve official languages plans and priorities

  • Service and accountability to Canadians with regard to official languages are improved
  • Stronger shared vision of service delivery to Canadians in both official languages and of a bilingual workplace in regions designated as bilingual, based on underlying Public Service values
  • Objectives are met for increasing bilingual capacities within executive and executive feeder groups, thereby fostering the use of both official languages in the workplace in regions designated as bilingual

 

2004–09

2004–09

2004–09

Progressed as planned with challenges in specific areas