ARCHIVED - Industry Canada 2007-2008

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 Report Card 2007–2008
Industry Canada

Factors and Criteria

Summary of Substantiating Data


Management (15%)

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

The Official Languages Reference Manual serves as the accountability framework for Industry Canada (IC). This document describes all official languages (OL) roles and responsibilities and specifies how obligations pursuant to Parts IV, V, VI and VII of the Official Languages Act (the Act) are to be fulfilled.

The Human Resources Branch OL Unit establishes an annual action plan which includes a list of activities, objectives, responsibilities, timelines and performance indicators that is approved by senior management. New to this year is the integration of OL in the Department’s triennial HR planning process (2007–2010).  The OL Action Plan template was approved by the Deputy Minister and identifies four key objectives: accountability through leadership and commitment; ensuring a more proactive approach to communications with and services to the public; ensuring a work environment conducive to the use of both OL in bilingual regions; and organizational capacity to provide bilingual services. Guiding principles were drafted and shared with persons responsible for preparing sector- (or region-) specific action plans.

The Department also has an action plan on Part VII (2004–2008) on which it reports annually to Canadian Heritage.

A HR-related clause (including OL issues) may be included in EX performance agreements, based on organizational requirements, at management's discretion, as appropriate. During the course of the performance review process, all EXs are evaluated on the whole on their sound HR management practices, which include OL, even in cases where clauses are not officially incorporated in the agreement.

The achievement of Action Plan objectives for Parts IV, V and VI is assessed while preparing the OL Annual Review, which is submitted to the Canada Public Service Agency (CPSA). An IC officer is responsible for reporting on progress to senior management. The Review is posted on the Human Resources Branch intranet site.

Commitments related to OL obligations are included in many performance agreements.


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

The 2007–2008 Report on Plans and Priorities refers to the OL objectives and describes the activities and investments planned for the economic development of official language minority communities (OLMCs). OL are mentioned in the 2006–2007 Departmental Performance Report. Official languages are integrated into internal audits.

The Executive Committee discusses OL two to three times throughout the year. The OL Champion, an assistant deputy minister, addresses OL issues at this committee, as the need arises. Communications concerning OL issues are sent by HR DG or by the OL Champion. OL-related messages are also conveyed  to employees via the electronic newsletter, This Week @IC.

The Part VII Coordinator and the manager responsible for Parts IV, V and VI of the Act maintain regular contact.


(c) Complaints and follow-up (5%)

The complaint handling system is explained in the Administrative Guidelines on the Investigation and Resolution of Official Languages Complaints.

Complaints from the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages (OCOL) are systematically forwarded to the OL Unit, which serves as a liaison between managers and OCOL. Managers are responsible for handling and resolving complaints, preparing responses and implementing corrective measures as needed.

The Human Resources Branch keeps a record of all complaints and an annual report is presented to senior management. Industry Canada also reports on complaints received in its Annual Review to CPSA.

OL information campaign presentations to sector/branch management tables began in the spring of 2007.  An electronic copy of the 20-minute presentation and a copy of the newly-updated brochure entitled ‘English and French Makes Good Business Sense’ were provided to all attendees. Current trends relating to OL complaints were discussed in the context of addressing departmental challenges (active offer and correctly identifying the language requirements of bilingual positions). Managers were encouraged to share the presentation with their staff.  Facilitators also available to present the deck at future all-staff meeting (or focus days).




Service to the public—Part IV (25%)

(a) Bilingual services advertised to the public and sufficient bilingual staff (3%)

Designated bilingual offices are identified in Burolis, in the blue pages and on the IC Web site.

A total of 95% of employees in bilingual positions serving the public meet the language requirements of their position (Source: Position and Classification Information System [PCIS], March 31, 2007).


(b) Observations on active offer and service delivery

According to observations of in-person service made by OCOL between mid-June and mid-July 2007, an active visual offer was present in 86% of cases; an active offer by staff was made in 24% of cases, while service in the language of the linguistic minority was adequate in 72% of cases.

According to observations of service on the telephone made by OCOL between mid-June and mid-July 2007, an active offer by staff or by an automated system was made in 77% of cases, while service in the language of the linguistic minority was adequate in 88% of cases.


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

The Official Languages Reference Manual specifies that the obligation regarding service to the public applies to contractors or third parties that communicate with or provide services to the public on behalf of IC. There is also an OL clause in contribution agreements. Program officers check for the presence of this clause and verify the contents. Complaints received by the Department, contribution reports and reports from contractors and third parties serve as indicators of the quality of services delivered in both OL.


(d) Policy on service to the public and bilingual services quality monitoring (5%)

The Official Languages Reference Manual contains a section on communication with and services to the public that establishes the requirements related to communications and bilingual service delivery. It also raises employee awareness regarding IC’s commitment to respect the equality of English and French. The Manual is posted on the IC intranet site.

Managers are responsible for training, informing and supervising employees regarding active offer of service in both OL and service delivery in the clients’ language of choice. Each office is responsible for assessing client satisfaction. OL awareness presentations to managers during the spring and summer included an overview of Parts IV, V, VI and VII of the Act. 

Using Burolis listing effective November 2007, the OL Unit conducted its own audit over the telephone of all IC offices identified as providing bilingual services. Findings will be examined early in 2008 and will be used as a means of identifying problem areas and used as a base line measure to identify progress following the implementation of the Department’s OL Communications Strategy (Parts IV, V, and VI) for fiscal years 2007–2008 and 2008–2009.

The newsletter, This Week @ IC, provides language tips for all employees every week. The individual HR plans of each sector and region incorporate OL, including a review of the linguistic capacity of their work unit.

In preparing the Annual Review for the CPSA, managers are required to report on service to the public. The Review is posted on the IC intranet site.




Language of work—Part V (25%)

(a) Language of work policy and adequate bilingual supervision (12.5%)

The Official Languages Reference Manual contains a section on language of work, which outlines the rights and obligations related to internal communications, obtaining personal and central services, work instruments and computer systems, supervision, language of meetings, as well as training and development.

Management committees have identified sources of funding to support second language training for professional development and skills retention initiatives. The issue was also raised at a recent executive meeting to review equity issues and address the Canada School of Public Service (CSPS) mandate changes effective April 1, 2007 in an effort to establish a more standardized  approach to second language training for career development purposes. Some of the initiatives launched in the sectors and regions include: private language training, group sessions for various levels in either official language, lunch-and-learn sessions, 6 to 8-week summer immersion courses, reimbursement of fees by management for courses taken after work hours and training methods selected by employees.

IC has finalized a Request for Standing Offer (RFSO) for full-and part-time language training for IC (NCR). Departmental representatives also participate in discussions relating to the RFSO for full-time second language training services in the NCR. 

Centralized translation and document editing services are provided through a contract with the Translation Bureau. The intranet site, Mon Cicérone, provides employees with a user-friendly guide that helps them integrate language training into their daily activities. 

A total of 98% of senior management and 94% of supervisors in bilingual positions in bilingual regions meet the language requirements of their position (Source: PCIS, March 31, 2007).


(b) Use of each official language in the workplace (12.5%)

Employees and managers are reminded of their OL rights and obligations at meetings or through  electronic communications. Signs are posted in meeting rooms to encourage participants to use their OL of choice. As an awareness measure, persons in charge of OL give information sessions and use internal electronic communications such as This Week @ IC to inform employees of their language rights.

The Executive Committee uses both OL during meetings. Participants are encouraged to communicate in their language of choice during meetings and the meeting chair ensures that all participants can follow the discussions.

A report on the language status of all senior management members is produced annually.

The institution uses complaints received and central agency survey results (e.g. the Public Service Employee Survey and the expected results  of the OCOL Language of Work Survey) as indicators of the implementation of the Policy on Language of Work and reports on this in its Annual Report to CPSA.

The OL Champion promoted the survey by communicating directly with all staff concerned, inviting them to participate in the survey  and providing contact information for questions/comments.

The survey conducted by Statistics Canada on behalf of OCOL showed that overall, 73% of Francophone respondents in the National Capital Region (NCR), New Brunswick and bilingual regions of Ontario "strongly agreed" or "mostly agreed" with the language of work policy. Due to the small number of Anglophone respondents in the bilingual regions of Quebec, OCOL was not able to use the results of the survey for this assessment.




Equitable participationPart VI (10%)

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

Overall, the workforce is 40% Francophone (Source: PCIS, March 31, 2007).


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

In Quebec, the workforce is 7.2% Anglophone (Source: PCIS, March 31, 2007).


Development of official language minority communities and promotion of linguistic duality—Part VII (25%)


The 2004–2008 Action Plan for the Implementation of Section 41 of Part VII of the Act is still in effect, but is expiring soon. It was developed following official consultations organized by Industry Canada, regional development agencies (RDAs) and representatives of official language minority communities (OLMCs).

In response to recommendations made during the formative evaluation of the Industry Canada Action Plan, an internal discussion network on official languages was established. The network will serve as a mechanism to identify, study, implement and assess official languages activities within the Department. It will advise the Champion on the following components: service to the public, language of work, equitable participation, and OLMC economic development.

The Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM), Regional Operations Sector, is the Official Languages Champion at Industry Canada. His role is to ensure that the Department meets its official languages obligations. The OL Champion sits on the Board of Directors of IC programs and services in order to ensure that section 41 of the Official Languages Act is included in documents submitted to the Treasury Board Secretariat.

The national coordination team manages issues related to Part VII of the Act. It also relies on a network of coordinators and advisors in the regions (Atlantic Region, Quebec, Ontario, Prairies/North, Pacific Region), which maintains a good relationship with OLMCs. 

An evaluation mechanism to assess the impact of the Department’s initiatives to meet the conditions of the accountability framework for the Official Languages Action Plan has been designed. This tool will help in analyzing the impact of initiatives on communities. It will also help managers better understand the requirements of the Act and better identify the communities’ priorities.

Senior management is made aware of the Act through the ADM’s participation in various departmental committees, the discussion network on official languages, the launch of the socio-economic analysis on OLMCs in view of supporting the renewal of the Official Languages Action Plan and the “Official Languages Pay!” awareness-raising campaign organized by the national coordination team.

The formative evaluation of the 2006 Action Plan looked at the extent of the impact of policies and programs on the economic development of OLMCs. These recommendations were accepted by the Management Committee, and the national coordination team finished implementing the communication products and strategy and the awareness-raising activities, as well as setting up the discussion network and identifying performance measures.

In its 2004–2008 Action Plan, IC indicates that its mission concerning section 41 is to contribute to making its programs and services accessible to OLMCs, thereby supporting their contribution to Canada’s economic development in the language of the minority. Industry Canada is reviewing various tools and options to help it assess the impact of its policies and programs on OLMCs. Based on a list of departmental policies, programs and services, the national section 41 coordination team is working to optimize participation of OLMCs in departmental initiatives.

The Memorandum of Understanding signed by the Department with RDAs contains two initiatives intended mainly for OLMCs: pilot teletraining and telelearning projects, designed to ensure access to state-of-the-art technology and services delivered using technology. Over $2.2 million was invested in 24 projects during the last fiscal year, and the Youth Internship initiative provided 45 young people from OLMCs with a work experience that integrated IT training.


(a) Development of official language minority communities (12.5%)


For the fourth consecutive year, Industry Canada held formal consultations with OLMCs in partnership with the RDAs. This year, the agenda was established jointly by the government agencies and the OLMCs. Industry Canada ensured that national agencies representing OLMCs (Réseau national de développement économique et d'employabilité, Fédération des communautés francophones et acadienne, Community Table, Quebec Community Groups Network), as well as regional, provincial and territorial agencies devoted to the economic development of OLMCs took part in these talks. This major activity helped IC find out about minority community views on promotion of linguistic duality and determine whether its actions have a positive impact on these communities.

Consideration of the OLMCs’ point of view in departmental consultations, research, studies and surveys encourages information sharing. Discussions within the network of regional coordinators and advisors promote cooperation. IC’s participation in the Comité national de développement économique et d’employabilité and in large-scale activities such as the Francophonie Summit and the Symposium on Official Languages ensures the Department’s visibility. According to IC, these factors show that a feedback mechanism is in place.


(b) Promotion of linguistic duality (12.5%)


Although the 2004–2008 Action Plan does not include a specific section on the promotion of linguistic duality, it sets out positive measures to promote English and French. Industry Canada has conducted a formative evaluation of its action plan and intends to submit a report on the activities completed.

The Department recently completed a research project that resulted in the production of a DVD that provides a socio-economic profile of OLMCs, with a view to better targeting the programs and services provided. This interactive tool will not only help OLMCs gain a better understanding of their socio-economic situation within the country, but it will also be useful to IC and other public service institutions.

Industry Canada has provided financial support to OLMC businesses through the Language Industry Program.

Industry Canada posts its OL Action Plan as well as its Achievement Report on its Web site, which contains a link to the site. The latter is an online resource centre that provides information on Government of Canada programs and services that support the economic development of OLMCs. As a result, minority language communities have access to information on activities related to official languages and are informed of steps taken to contribute to the vitality of their respective communities. According to the information collected during previous years, the site received an estimated 75,000 hits per year, and this Web site supports Canada’s linguistic duality.