ARCHIVED - Human Resources and Skills Development Canada 2005-2006

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2005-2006 Fact Sheet

Factors and criteria

Summary of substantiating data



a) An accountability framework, an action plan and accountability mechanisms are in place (5%)

Note: On December 12, 2003, the Government of Canada announced the reorganization of Human Resources Development Canada (HRDC) into two separate departments: Human Resources and Skills Development (HRSDC) and Social Development Canada (SDC). Following this change, HRSDC had to update the policies and the various tools developed by HRDC and adapt them to its new environment.

Following the launch of Service Canada on September 14, 2005, a significant part of HRDC’s workforce moved to Service Canada. This evaluation deals with the situation which existed within HRSDC in 2005 before the launch of Service Canada in September 2005.

HRSDC is using the HRDC accountability framework, which included official languages (OL) indicators. This document was distributed to all senior managers. In conjunction with Service Canada, HRSDC has developed an OL action plan (2005-2008), while indicating that the next action plan (2006-2009) will reflect the new department.

HRSDC was very actively involved in the development of the Performance Measurement Framework of the Action Plan for Official Languages and contributed significantly to the development of performance indicators for evaluating implementation of this plan.

Senior managers are accountable for the attainment of OL objectives in their performance agreements.

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b) Visibility of official languages in the organization (5%)

There are references to OL in the 2005-2006 Report on Plans and Priorities and in the 2004-2005 Performance Report. They include the Department’s commitment to providing services to the public in both OL and to the implementation of section 41 of the Official Languages Act.

Although the institution is working to enhance its audit and evaluation function, OL are not included in internal audits.

The former Deputy Minister informed members of the management team about the impact of the government’s new OL policies on departmental activities. The committee approved his recommendation that effective April 2004, all EX-2 and EX-3 positions be staffed imperatively, which is a more proactive approach than the official government policy, which called for a gradual approach for this level.

OL files are discussed by the Management Committee. The OL champion was at the Associate Deputy Minister level and sat on the Management Committee. She also provided coordination for Parts IV, V, VI and VII of the Act.

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c) Complaints (5%)

In the new structure, the person responsible for OL receives complaints, ensures that the managers responsible are involved in seeking lasting solutions and also ensures that lessons learned are shared.

A quarterly complaints report is distributed to senior managers and these complaints are discussed during monthly conference calls in which departmental representatives from the various regions across Canada participate.

The Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages (OCOL) notes that the following systemic problems still exist at HRSDC: Labour Market Development Agreements still do not take into account the Commissioner's recommendations that date back to 1997; the establishment of the single-window network does not always take the needs of official language minority communities into account, and despite significant progress in that regard, the quality of machine translations of certain job offers still leaves something to be desired.

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Service to the public - Part IV

a) Bilingual services advertised to the public and sufficient bilingual staff (4%)

Bilingual services are listed in BUROLIS and in the Blue Pages of telephone directories. The list of bilingual service points is also advertised in minority language newspapers. The official languages symbol is posted in visible locations at offices and points of service.

87% of the incumbents of bilingual positions serving the public meet the language requirements of their position. (Source: Position and Classification Information System (PCIS), March 31, 2005)

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b) Findings on active offer and service delivery (15%)

According to observations of in-person service made by OCOL in the fall of 2005, active visual offer was present in 77% of cases, active offer by staff was made by staff in 31% of cases, while service in the language of the linguistic minority was adequate in 89% of cases.

According to observations of service on the telephone made by OCOL in the fall of 2005, active offer of service by staff or by an automated system was made in 91% of cases, while service in the language of the linguistic minority was adequate in 94% of cases.

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c) The service agreements delivered by third parties or in partnership provide for the delivery of bilingual services (2%)

The guidelines on grants and contributions deal explicitly with OL obligations. Service agreements with third parties include a clause on the provision of bilingual services. There are no monitoring mechanisms to measure the quality of the services provided in both OL by third parties.

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d) Bilingual services quality monitoring (4%)

OL are part of orientation for new employees and are included in individual electronic learning programs. In addition, the Department frequently reminds employees serving the public of their obligations to provide service in both OL.

There are regular audits of bilingual offices to confirm that signage, as well as documentation on display, are in both OL.

The Department evaluates the quality of bilingual services through client satisfaction surveys in some regions (for example, in Prince Edward Island, the institution verified whether the services provided in French meet clients’ needs and whether they are of comparable quality to the services provided in English) and through complaints analysis. The quarterly complaints report distributed to senior managers and the monthly discussion of complaints during conference calls in which departmental representatives from the various regions across Canada participate are also used to monitor the quality of bilingual services.

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Language of work - Part V

a) Adequate bilingual supervision and language of work policy (12.5%)

84% of executives who hold bilingual positions are bilingual, while 87% of supervisors in bilingual regions meet the language requirements of their position. (Source: PCIS, March 31, 2005)

The Department must update HRDC’s language of work policy, as well as the various tools used to raise employee awareness of their rights and responsibilities with respect to language of work. These tools include a brochure for managers explaining their language of work obligations, an information brochure for managers in unilingual regions and regular messages entitled, “Think Official Languages” that periodically address language of work.

Translation and revision services are available at headquarters and in the bilingual regions. The Department also provides access to part-time language courses, during and after working hours. The Intranet site also provides information on language of work, with links to second-language learning sites, OL games and a Frequently Asked Questions section.

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b) Establishment of an environment conducive to both official languages (12.5%)

Employees and managers have received reminders about their OL and language of work rights and responsibilities. Updates have been posted on the Web site and “Think Official Languages” reminder e-mails have been sent.

There are posters in meeting rooms in the NCR to encourage employees to use their OL of choice during meetings. Management Committee meetings are held in both OL.

The only mechanisms for determining the language of work situation in the Department are complaints analysis, discussions during the monthly conference calls and the results of the Public Service survey.

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Equitable participation - Part VI

a) Percentage of Francophone participation throughout Canada (5%)

Francophones account for 33.6% of HRSDC’s workforce as a whole. (Source: PCIS, March 31, 2005)

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b) Percentage of Anglophone participation in Quebec (5%)

Anglophones account for 3% of HRSDC’s workforce in Quebec. (Source: PCIS, March 31, 2005)

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Development of minority language communities and promotion of linguistic duality - Part VII

a) Strategic planning and the development of policies and programs take into account the development of minority language communities (12.5%)

The OL Division reviews Treasury Board submissions to ensure that they take into account the development of OL minority communities. There are also regular consultations with colleagues responsible for Part VII of the Act. Twenty-one submissions were reviewed during the past year.

The Department submits an action plan concerning Part VII of the Act to Canadian Heritage. It actively contributes to the development of OL minority communities, for instance by: participating in the work of the Citizenship and Immigration Canada - Francophone Minority Communities Sub-committee; granting funds to organizations representing the communities under the Support Fund for Community Economic Development and Human Resources Development; funding the participation of community representatives in programs that fall under its mandate, such as the allocation of funds to 25 community projects across Canada through the National Literacy Secretariat; and funding of activities enabling 998 young people from OL minority communities to gain work experience under the Youth Employment Strategy. The Department obtained a total of $36 million from Treasury Board over a three year period to finance the Enabling Fund. The Department has also worked with Canadian Heritage and other federal institutions to develop measures aimed at providing OL minority communities with easier access to appropriate and effective family literacy programs and tools, especially within Francophone communities. To this end, and in response to the Action Plan for Official Languages, the Department has committed $7.4 million for the next five years.

The Department has provided financial support to the Regroupements de développement économique et d’employabilité (RDÉEs) and the Community Economic Development and Employability Committees (CEDECs) through contribution agreements. This helps ensure the continuing operation of organizations that promote human resources development, economic growth, and job creation and retention in OL minority communities.

The Department’s communications practices comply with the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada concerning the purchase of space and time in media serving OL minority communities.

In most regions, senior management participates in the work of the OL committees of the Federal Councils and the regional networks. Employees are informed about the needs of the OL minority communities during general OL awareness sessions, during the monthly conference calls and through the network of coordinators for Part VII.

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b) Strategic planning and the development of policies and programs take into account the promotion of linguistic duality (12.5%)

The OL Division reviews Treasury Board submissions to ensure that they take into account the promotion of linguistic duality. There are also regular consultations with colleagues responsible for Part VII of the Act. Twenty-one submissions were reviewed during the past year.

HRSDC, through the national committees on economic development and employability, is improving access to federal programs and services by providing facilitation, consultation, planning and information dissemination services. This ensures better horizontality in coordinating the activities of federal departments and agencies in order to more effectively support economic development, human resources development and community capacity building activities.

During the 2005 Les Rendez-vous de la Francophonie, the institution participated in the interdepartmental committee responsible for organizing the official launch of the event, which was held at the Canadian Museum of Civilisation. An event to celebrate these Rendez-vous was organized internally, in partnership with other departments.

The Coordination Division of the English Linguistic Community planned, organized and participated in the meetings of the Government Table and the National Anglophone Committee. It provided strategic and operational advice to federal representatives and informed the representatives of the National Anglophone Committee about the programs and services provided by the Department.

Examples of the promotion of linguistic duality include bilingual student employment officers visiting French-language high schools to provide students with information on the Hire-a-Student Program. The regional OL units in Alberta, Northwest Territories and Nunavut circulate Alberta’s weekly French-language newspaper among its employees and send e-mails to raise awareness about both OL.

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