Rescinded - Deployment Policy

Provides information on the policy objectives, requirements, responsibilities , directives for deployment and recourse, and deployment guidelines. The purpose of the policy is to enable deployment of employees to meet operational needs, or career development and individual needs of employees; to develop the skills and abilities required by organizations in the longer term; and to foster the achievement of employment equity goals.
Date modified: 2000-06-01

This page has been archived on the Web

Information identified as archived is provided for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. It is not subject 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.

Print-friendly XML

Note to reader

Notice to the reader: This document is no longer in effect. It has been archived online and is kept purely for historical purposes.

Effective date

This policy takes effect June 1, 2000.


The Treasury Board, as employer of the Public Service, is committed to providing policies and provisions designed to allow employees to enhance their work life and develop themselves, while at the same time assisting departments in meeting their business objectives.

Providing an environment that encourages the movement of employees in order for them to develop and to meet organizational needs can result in benefits to organizations such as the following:

  • a competitive edge for attracting and retaining highly skilled individuals;
  • reduced levels of employee stress and conflict;
  • higher levels of productivity and output;
  • higher levels of employee satisfaction and motivation; and
  • a more satisfying work environment.


A deployment is the move of an employee from one position to another within the same occupational group or, where authorized by regulations of the Public Service Commission of Canada (PSC), to another occupational group. A deployment may be made for an indeterminate or a specified period and, unlike assignments or secondments, an employee gains incumbency in the position to which he or she is deployed and therefore assumes the classification level and any terms and conditions of employment of the new position. A deployment cannot result in a promotion or a change of tenure. A deployment requires the consent of the employee concerned except in those situations where a willingness to be deployed is a condition of employment of his or her current position.

Policy objective

To promote the efficient and timely movement of employees to new job responsibilities to meet either operational or individual needs or both.

Policy statement

It is government policy to deploy employees to meet operational needs; to fulfil the career development and individual needs of employees; to develop the skills and abilities required by organizations in the longer term; and to foster the achievement of employment equity goals.


This policy applies to all organizations listed in Part I of Schedule I of the Public Service Staff Relations Act for which the Treasury Board is the employer and where staffing is conducted in accordance with the Public Service Employment Act.

Policy requirements

Deployments are to be made in a fair, reasonable, and transparent manner, taking into account the needs of the organization and the legitimate career interests and aspirations of employees.

Departments must establish deployment policies and procedures that respect the directives made by the Treasury Board pursuant to sections 34.2(1), 34.3(1), and 34.3(3) of the Public Service Employment Act (see Appendix A), or any regulations made under section 37.1(1) of that Act and that:

  • take into consideration the needs and rights of employees subject to workforce adjustment;
  • include criteria for determining which positions, if any, in the organization shall require an agreement to be deployed as a condition of employment;
  • provide instructions for departmental complaint processes and procedures;
  • take into account the policy requirements for deployments in the Executive Group.

Departments must consult with their bargaining agents on the establishment of their deployment policies and procedures.

A signed letter of offer will act as the 'certificate of appointment' for pay purposes for deployments.


The Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat may periodically evaluate the effectiveness of this policy. Information will be collected annually from the PSC and other information systems and periodically from internal and PSC audits.

Departments must regularly monitor and evaluate their deployment policies against Treasury Board policy requirements. Departments must provide, at the request of the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, the number of complaints on deployments lodged by employees and the number of these accepted or rejected by the Deputy Head.

For each complaint, departments must maintain information regarding the reason for the complaint, the nature of the Deputy Head's decision, the corrective action taken, and the length of time taken to dispose of the complaint.



This policy is issued pursuant to the Public Service Employment Act, subsection 2(1), sections 34.1 to 34.6, subsection 37.1(1), and section 37.2.

Relevant legislation

Public Service Employment Regulations, sections 2, 6 and 29 and Schedule I

Treasury Board policy

Staffing of Bilingual Positions Policy

Policy on Deployment of Executives


Enquiries relating to this policy should be referred to the responsible officer designated in departmental/organizational headquarters, who in turn may direct questions regarding interpretation to the Human Resources Branch of the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat.

Appendix A - Treasury Board directives for deployment and recourse


Deputy heads shall deploy employees only if they meet the security, medical, and conflict of interest requirements, have eligibility for any mandatory occupational certification requirements and meet any standard created by the Public Service Commission of Canada (PSC) for the purpose of the provisions of the Public Service Employment Regulations relating to inter-group deployment, for the positions to which they are being deployed.

These requirements apply to both inter-group deployments and deployments within the same occupational group.

Deputy heads shall deploy employees in accordance with the Treasury Board Policy on the Staffing of Bilingual Positions.


Employees being deployed, and employees in the work unit to which a deployment has been made or is about to be made, shall be informed that the deployment has taken place, or will take place, no later than 10 working days from the effective date of the deployment and shall be given no less than 10 working days from the date they have been so informed within which to lodge complaints.

The Deputy Head must review complaints and inform the concerned parties in writing of the proposed disposition of the complaint or any corrective action to be taken within 20 working days from the receipt of the complaint. 'Concerned parties' means the employee(s) lodging the complaint, the employee(s) being deployed, and the manager responsible for the deployment.

If, in the opinion of the Deputy Head, the review cannot be completed within 20 working days, the Deputy Head may extend the process until all concerned parties have had a reasonable opportunity to state their positions and the Deputy Head has had the opportunity to reach a decision. All concerned parties must be informed in writing of any extension before the expiry of the initial 20-day period and the date by which the review will be completed. Notwithstanding the possibility of extension, the Deputy Head is to complete the review as quickly as possible and to inform the concerned employees about the disposition or corrective action so that they may refer their complaints to the PSC if they are not satisfied.

The Deputy Head must inform, in writing, the employee being deployed and all employees who have lodged complaints, of their right to refer a complaint to the PSC within the time period established by the PSC, if they are not satisfied with the proposed disposition or corrective action to be taken by the Deputy Head.

Appendix B - Deployment guidelines

Since deployment is one of a variety of staffing processes available to managers, deputy heads may wish to consider delegating deployment authority to those managers who have sub-delegated authority for other staffing activities.

Because the tenure of an employee cannot be changed by a deployment, an indeterminate employee who is deployed into a specified period (term) position retains indeterminate status and there should be an agreement at the time of the deployment about the action to be taken at the end of the specified period. As the tenure of a specified period employee is for the duration of their term appointment, the deployment of a specified period employee cannot extend their employment beyond the end date of their appointment.

In order to keep the deployment process fair, reasonable, and, most of all, transparent, managers should make efforts to ensure that employees are made aware of upcoming staffing opportunities where the intention is to use deployment. This could involve such activities as announcements at staff meetings, e-mail, or asking employees periodically about their career interests.

Given that the circumstances and needs of occupational groups may differ, departments may wish to consider adopting different deployment policies or procedures for different occupational groups. When determining criteria for deciding which positions require, as a condition of employment, an agreement to be deployed, departments may wish to consider historical work patterns, employee development needs, the lack of other practicable means to meet needs, and, particularly, the nature of the work itself. The condition of employment may be applicable only to deployment within a particular location or region, to a prescribed time period, or to other limiting criteria that are appropriate. The application of this condition should be based on objective criteria and it should not be used to respond simply to unforeseen and unlikely circumstances.

The Public Service Employment Act gives deputy heads authority to specify 'work units' that determine the eligibility of employees to access the deployment recourse process. Every effort should be made to establish a consistent approach within the department when specifying work units for deployment recourse. If the Deputy Head does not specify a work unit, for purposes of determining access to the recourse process, the work unit will be the entire department.

Deputy heads may delegate their authority to review deployment complaints and to determine corrective action. Employees are entitled to be represented during the deployment recourse process.

Deputy heads or their delegates have an obligation under the law to review all complaints received in order to determine their jurisdiction as part of the deployment complaint process. Whether or not the department believes the complaint is relevant as a deployment complaint, the complainant and any other concerned parties must be informed in writing of the deputy head's decision.

Date modified: