We are currently moving our web services and information to Canada.ca.

The Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat website will remain available until this move is complete.

Succession planning and management guide

Archived information

Archived information is provided for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. It is not subject à to the Government of Canada Web Standards and has not been altered or updated since it was archived. Please contact us to request a format other than those available.

Critical success factors

Consultations with various stakeholders and research on effective succession planning and management pointed to the following success criteria. You may want to consider these points as your organization builds or improves existing succession planning strategies:

  • Senior executives communicate the importance of succession planning and management as an organizational priority and are actively involved in the process.
  • Succession planning is aligned with business plans and to the broader HR planning process and activities, including performance, development, learning, and recruitment.
  • A fair, accessible, and transparent process is used.
  • Planning extends to all levels of the organization rather than remaining limited to senior executive positions. There is collaboration among key players and buy-in from stakeholders.
  • Employees are assessed through multiple sources of data, and critical development opportunities are identified early.
  • Experiential learning is encouraged and is supported by coaching and evaluation of progress.
  • A range of developmental activities is employed. These activities are individually tailored to address gaps in skills and competencies.
  • Competencies and skills for key positions are reinforced in various HR systems such as recruitment, learning, development, and performance management.
  • Mechanisms are in place to ensure the full realization of employment equity and diversity goals.
  • A good communications plan is in place.
  • Managers and employees participate in workshops and information sessions to learn about the succession planning process and their role in it.
  • Tools that support the process are easy to use and accessible.
  • The process is ongoing, monitored, evaluated, and refined based on feedback from stakeholders, leading research, and new developments in technology.

Date modified: