Following completion of Taking Care of Business 5 early in the year, the ICCS initiated the Citizens First 8 study by completing the sponsor recruitment process and launching a series of consultations with key stakeholders. In April, the project was formally launched with an ideation session whose aim was to obtain sponsors’ input on the proposed approaches and identify the key areas of interest for the study. This was followed by extensive one-on-one consultations with the eleven participating jurisdictions to further inform the overall direction of the survey and its various components. The key changes to the study compared to the previous iteration included a revised Client Satisfaction Index, closer alignment with the CMT, and introduction of behavioural science-based approaches to identifying barriers to increased online use. After finalizing the questionnaires, data collection was conducted between December 2017 and February 2018, with over 5,600 Canadians having been interviewed in that period.
On the international front, the ICCS continues its collaboration with Singapore’s Civil Service College, which has renewed its Citizens First license for another year. The initial iteration of the Singapore version of the study, under the name of ‘Satisfaction with Public Services’, was completed toward the end of 2017.
In addition, the ICCS has been actively engaged in outreach activities aiming to promote both Citizens First and Taking Care of Business. This included presenting at meetings and conferences such as the Spring Conference of the Local Government Management Association of British Columbia in April.
The ICCS continues to provide Secretariat support to two National Councils - the Public Sector Service Delivery Council (PSSDC) and the Public Sector Chief Information Officer Council (PSCIOC).
The PSSDC and PSCIOC come together as the “Joint Councils”, to address issues of common concern and interest. The two Councils collaborate to enhance the efficacy of public service to the Canadian public.
There are a number of sub-committees and working groups of the Joint Councils, PSCIOC and PSSDC focused on key priority areas. The PSCIOC, PSSDC and the Joint Councils, in collaboration with the ICCS, exemplify a unique pan-Canadian model of inter-jurisdictional cooperation and collaboration.
As a neutral Federal Provincial Territorial and Municipal (FPTM) platform for collaboration and shared learning in support of the work of the Joint Councils, the ICCS provides support services in the following business areas of responsibility:
- Management and Administration
- Liaison and Relationship Building
- Financial Management
The ICCS Secretariat organizes and manages the Joint Councils’ bi-annual in-person meetings. In 2017-2018 fiscal year, the ICCS organized and managed the Charlottetown September 2017 and the Toronto February 2018 in-person meetings in addition to monthly teleconferences.
Work of the Joint Councils
Joint Councils members are working on a roadmap to effectively support Canada’s next generation of Digital Government. The main priority areas of the Joint Councils are:
Development of a roadmap to make digital identity real across jurisdictions and service channels.
Development of a plan to guide digital transformation efforts and promote jurisdictional alignment.
Client Centric Services
Applying client centric principles and best practices to cross-jurisdictional initiatives in Canada and ensuring that the customer is at the centre of everything that government does.
An example of the work being carried out by the Joint Councils is the Death Registration and Notification project. The Joint Councils Death Notification Working Group have developed a blueprint and current state maps for Death Registration and Notification practices in Canada. This information is an important step toward improving the timeliness of Death Registration and Notification across Canada and as a result will drive changes that improve citizens’ service experience and the integrity of key government programs.
The PSSDC’s main priorities are:
Client Centric Services
This is a shared priority with the Joint Councils which ensures that the customer is at the entre of everything that government does.
Service Network Collaboration
Improving the client experience by leveraging each other’s service delivery network strengths and maximizing their efficiencies.
Service to Business
Sharing information and experiences, and exploring opportunities and challenges in improving public sector service delivery for business clients.
The PSSDC through its Channel Shifting Working Group have developed a Bevaroural Insights Playbook which focuses on designing solutions with the client in mind, first and foremost. This Playbook focuses on how to leverage behavioural insights in order to shift citizens to the online channels.
The PSCIOC’s main priorities are
IT Procurement and Identity Management
Federal, Provincial, Territorial and Municipal governments are working together to protect Canadians and critical infrastructure from cyber threats.
Common Measurements Tool
The ICCS continues to provide ongoing support to existing and potential users of the Common Measurements Tool (CMT). In the course of the year, a number of jurisdictions and organizations representing all levels of government have renewed their licenses. These include Alberta Labour, BC Stats, Region of Peel, Service Canada, and Workers’ Compensation Board of Alberta. In addition, Transport Canada came on board as a new CMT licensee. It should be of particular note that BC Stats has opted for a new agreement that has extended its license period to five years, thus confirming its long-term commitment to using the CMT in its survey work.
The CMT is also being employed by organizations from other countries, including Australia and New Zealand. The ICCS has renewed its partnership with CSBA, which works with a range of municipal governments across Australia and has been using the ICCS’ survey tool in its research. The instrument is also employed at the state-level by South Australia. Another jurisdiction that continues its commitment to the ICCS’ research solutions is New Zealand, where the State Services Commission has been promoting the use of the CMT and making it available across the national government departments and agencies for over a decade.
The ICCS also continues to provide a benchmarking service to those CMT users who want to compare their results to those of similar entities. Among Canadian organizations who have requested and received CMT benchmarking data in 2017-2018 are BC Stats, Service New Brunswick, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, and Workers’ Compensation Board of Alberta. In addition, the Institute has completed a customized benchmarking analysis for the Social Security Board of Belize, which was one of the deliverables stipulated under the partnership agreement signed back in 2016. Looking ahead, the ICCS has also been taking steps to initiate collaboration with external consultants with a view to enhancing the quality of the benchmarking service through introduction of new features, such as the self-service option.
In the course of the year, the ICCS has delivered CMT training and information sessions to organizations that include Alberta Labour, BC Stats, and the City of Edmonton.