2013-14 Departmental Performance Report
Ministers’ messages and section I
Departmental Performance Reports are part of the Estimates family of documents. Estimates documents support appropriation acts, which specify the amounts and broad purposes for which funds can be spent by the government. The Estimates document family has three parts.
Part I (Government Expenditure Plan) provides an overview of federal spending.
Part II (Main Estimates) lists the financial resources required by individual departments, agencies and Crown corporations for the upcoming fiscal year.
Part III (Departmental Expenditure Plans) consists of two documents. Reports on Plans and Priorities (RPPs) are expenditure plans for each appropriated department and agency (excluding Crown corporations). They describe departmental priorities, strategic outcomes, programs, expected results and associated resource requirements, covering a three-year period beginning with the year indicated in the title of the report. Departmental Performance Reports (DPRs) are individual department and agency accounts of actual performance, for the most recently completed fiscal year, against the plans, priorities and expected results set out in their respective RPPs. DPRs inform parliamentarians and Canadians of the results achieved by government organizations for Canadians.
Additionally, Supplementary Estimates documents present information on spending requirements that were either not sufficiently developed in time for inclusion in the Main Estimates or were subsequently refined to account for developments in particular programs and services.
The financial information in DPRs is drawn directly from authorities presented in the Main Estimates and the planned spending information in RPPs. The financial information in DPRs is also consistent with information in the Public Accounts of Canada. The Public Accounts of Canada include the Government of Canada Consolidated Statement of Financial Position, the Consolidated Statement of Operations and Accumulated Deficit, the Consolidated Statement of Change in Net Debt, and the Consolidated Statement of Cash Flow, as well as details of financial operations segregated by ministerial portfolio for a given fiscal year. For the DPR, two types of financial information are drawn from the Public Accounts of Canada: authorities available for use by an appropriated organization for the fiscal year, and authorities used for that same fiscal year. The latter corresponds to actual spending as presented in the DPR.
The Treasury Board Policy on Management, Resources and Results Structures further strengthens the alignment of the performance information presented in DPRs, other Estimates documents and the Public Accounts of Canada. The policy establishes the Program Alignment Architecture of appropriated organizations as the structure against which financial and non-financial performance information is provided for Estimates and parliamentary reporting. The same reporting structure applies irrespective of whether the organization is reporting in the Main Estimates, the RPP, the DPR or the Public Accounts of Canada.
A number of changes have been made to DPRs for 2013-14 to better support decisions on appropriations. Where applicable, DPRs now provide financial, human resources and performance information in Section II at the lowest level of the organization’s Program Alignment Architecture.
In addition, the DPR’s format and terminology have been revised to provide greater clarity, consistency and a strengthened emphasis on Estimates and Public Accounts information. As well, departmental reporting on the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy has been consolidated into a new supplementary information table posted on departmental websites. This new table brings together all of the components of the Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy formerly presented in DPRs and on departmental websites, including reporting on the Greening of Government Operations and Strategic Environmental Assessments. Section III of the report provides a link to the new table on the organization’s website. Finally, definitions of terminology are now provided in an appendix.
Our Government is committed to maintaining Canada’s economic stability by creating jobs, growth and long-term prosperity through our Economic Action Plan.
Canada’s success depends on the competitiveness of its businesses and industries. That is why, in 2013-14, the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) continued to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to innovate and commercialize their products and services, to enhance their business skills and productivity, and to sharpen their competitive edge in domestic and global markets. The Agency also worked to identify opportunities and challenges related to the growth and sustainability of communities, particularly those in rural areas, and the resource sectors on which many rely.
In New Brunswick, ACOA supported the growth of an early stage technology company, Introhive, as it commercialized its innovative software platform. This Fredericton-based firm has quickly expanded from nine employees to more than 40 and is poised for continued growth, particularly in the export market. In Lunenburg, N.S., the Agency supported Composites Atlantic in improving its internal processes, thereby increasing its productivity and competitiveness. This manufacturer of parts for the aeronautic, space and defence industries provides employment to more than 370 people.
ACOA helped Royal Star Foods of Tignish, P.E.I., to expand its capacity and strengthen its ability to compete in the global seafood market. With up to 290 employees at peak periods, this rural company is one of the largest seafood processors in the region. The Agency’s support to the internationally recognized Ocean Sciences Centre at Memorial University of Newfoundland helped enhance its capacity to respond to the needs of the provincial aquaculture industry, a sector that provides approximately 1,000 direct and indirect jobs, mostly in rural areas.
I am pleased to present ACOA’s 2013-14 Departmental Performance Report, which outlines, in more detail, the Agency’s success in promoting economic development in Atlantic Canada.
Bernard Valcourt, PC, QC, MP
Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development
In 2013-14, ACOA continued to help SMEs and communities throughout Atlantic Canada to create and maximize opportunities for economic growth.
ACOA continued to support SMEs in projects designed to increase their productivity and competitiveness. These initiatives included the acquisition of new technology, the expansion and modernization of their businesses, and the marketing of their products and services within Canada and abroad.
The Agency also continued to work with provincial partners, industry, professional organizations and other stakeholders to help SMEs prepare for significant emerging opportunities, such as those expected from the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement. This historic agreement will give Atlantic SMEs greater access to the lucrative European market and is expected to inject $12 billion a year into the Canadian economy. ACOA also organized seven events under the Atlantic Shipbuilding Action Plan to help SMEs prepare for business opportunities related to the renewal of Canada’s naval and coast guard fleets. These events attracted 355 SME representatives and led to 145 one-on-one meetings with major marine and defence contractors.
ACOA continued its work to strengthen the economic base of rural and urban communities by collaborating with partners such as community colleges, provincial governments, industry associations and Aboriginal stakeholders on ways to maximize and diversify economic development opportunities, including those related to local resource industries. Moreover, as a result of ACOA’s support to the region’s Community Business Development Corporations, more than 1,400 new jobs were created in rural communities across Atlantic Canada.
Within the Agency, initiatives were implemented to enhance internal innovation and efficiency in order to ensure that ACOA continues to excel in providing timely, relevant and effective services and support to this region and its people.
Rob Moore, PC, MP
Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency)
Appropriate Minister: The Honourable Bernard Valcourt, PC, QC, MP
Minister of State: The Honourable Rob Moore, PC, MP
Institutional Head: Mr. Paul J. LeBlanc, President
Ministerial portfolio: Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Enabling Instrument: Part I of the Government Organization Act, Atlantic Canada 1987, R.S.C, 1985, c. 41 (4th Supp.), also known as the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency Act. See the Department of Justice website for more information.
Year of Incorporation: 1987
Other: Mr. Gerald Keddy is the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue and for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.
Information regarding the Repayable Contributions Portfolio of ACOA’s Business Development Program is available on the Agency’s website.
Established in 1987 (Part I of the Government Organization Act, Atlantic Canada 1987, R.S.C., 1985, c.41 [4th Supp.], also known as the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency Act), the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) is the federal department responsible for the Government of Canada’s economic development efforts in the provinces of New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador.
The Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) is responsible for this organization.
ACOA works to create opportunities for economic growth in Atlantic Canada by helping businesses become more competitive, innovative and productive, by working with diverse communities to develop and diversify local economies, and by championing the strengths of Atlantic Canada. Together with Atlantic Canadians, ACOA is building a stronger economy.
ACOA plays an important role in developing and supporting policies and programs that strengthen the region’s economy. Its responsibilities are stated in the Agency’s legislation, which mandates the organization “to increase opportunity for economic development in Atlantic Canada and, more particularly, to enhance the growth of earned incomes and employment opportunities in that region.”[i] Although the Agency’s policies and program tools have evolved since its inception, the overall goal remains constant. ACOA is dedicated to helping the Atlantic region realize its full economic potential in terms of productivity, innovation, competitiveness and growth. This is achieved by addressing structural changes in the economy, helping communities and businesses to overcome challenges, and capitalizing on opportunities. ACOA is committed to helping the region build its capacity and make the transition to a stronger economy.
The Agency provides services through its head office in Moncton, N.B., and throughout the four Atlantic provinces, with regional offices located in each of the provincial capitals and 24 local field offices. With its Ottawa office, ACOA ensures that Atlantic Canada’s interests are reflected in the policies and programs developed by other departments and agencies of the federal government.
Strategic outcome and program alignment architecture
ACOA’s strategic outcome – a competitive Atlantic Canadian economy – and its program alignment architecture (PAA) can be found below. The PAA is based on the results of policy research and analysis, the periodic assessment of program relevance and performance, ongoing dialogue with stakeholders in the region, and the priorities and directions of the Government of Canada.
- Strategic Outcome: A competitive Atlantic Canadian economy
1.1 Program: Enterprise Development
1.1.1 Sub-Program: Innovation and Commercialization
1.1.2 Sub-Program: Productivity and Growth
1.1.3 Sub-Program: International Business Development
1.2 Program: Community Development
1.2.1 Sub-Program: Community Mobilization
1.2.2 Sub-Program: Community-based Business Development
1.2.3 Sub-Program: Community Investment
1.2.4 Sub-Program: Infrastructure Programming
1.3 Program: Policy, Advocacy and Coordination
1.3.1 Sub-Program: Policy
1.3.2 Sub-Program: Advocacy
1.3.3 Sub-Program: Coordination
All organizational priorities support the Agency’s strategic outcome: a competitive Atlantic Canadian economy. This outcome reflects the Agency’s legislative purpose to enhance the growth of earned incomes and employment opportunities and to advocate on behalf of Atlantic Canada, affecting national policy.
|Focus ACOA’s programs and services on initiatives that encourage Atlantic Canadian businesses to become more innovative, productive and competitive in the global marketplace.||Ongoing||Enterprise Development
|Summary of Progress|
|What progress has been made toward this priority?
In 2013-14, ACOA supported a broad range of projects to enhance the competitiveness and productivity of businesses, leading to improved growth and ultimately increased wealth, thus ensuring dynamic and sustainable communities in Atlantic Canada.
|Develop strategies, policies and programs that recognize the distinct economic development needs and opportunities of Atlantic Canadian communities, with a particular focus on rural businesses and communities.||Ongoing||Community Development Enterprise Development|
|Summary of Progress|
|What progress has been made toward this priority?
In 2013-14, ACOA worked closely with numerous stakeholders to identify and develop key initiatives that served to strengthen and enhance the economic foundations and the sustainability of communities throughout Atlantic Canada.
|Leadership through coordination and engagement with business, government and other stakeholders throughout the region to enable businesses to capitalize on emerging opportunities and address key challenges in areas such as skills.||New||Policy, Advocacy and Coordination|
|Summary of Progress|
|What progress has been made toward this priority?
|Continually improve the internal management of the organization and maintain employee engagement to excel in serving Canadians.||Ongoing||Internal Services|
|Summary of Progress|
|What progress has been made toward this priority?
|Risk||Risk Response Strategy||Link to PAA|
|Organizational Change Management
The risk that organizational change management efforts may not be sufficient to sustain and enhance productivity and overall effectiveness.
|ACOA supported opportunities for dialogue and engagement around change management, including implementation of Blueprint 2020 initiatives and of key risk management action plans. Operational planning documents provided concrete evidence of mitigation strategies to manage organizational change. The Agency focused on ensuring managers are properly equipped to lead change management efforts and to assume increased responsibilities resulting from the various organizational changes already introduced (e.g. conflict management tools, training on the Directive on Performance Management). A number of frameworks, tools and processes were also implemented (e.g. kaizen events, new social media guidelines, the fast-track staffing tool, and the ACOA Travel, Hospitality, Conference and Event Expenditures Framework) to empower employees to be creative, and to build on best practices to create efficiencies and support productivity.||Internal Services|
|Information Tools and Systems
The risk that an up-to-date suite of modern, compatible information tools and systems may not be developed in a timely manner, which may affect the effectiveness and efficiency of portfolio management and decision making.
|The Agency undertook a comprehensive internal review to confirm business needs and technology gaps. The information gathered was used to develop a new IT solutions strategy aimed at developing a more effective approach to providing standardized tools while respecting the government’s goal of realizing cost efficiencies. Training sessions were held throughout the Agency to address employee knowledge and skills gaps with the use of key corporate systems and tools as well as with a focus on promotion of tools and practices that facilitate information management. Further, the Agency continued to exchange information on best practices and tools with other government departments on a regular basis to improve its strategies and plans for the reduction of implementation costs and risks.||Internal Services|
The risk that existing evaluation, project selection, disbursement, monitoring and portfolio management activities may not be sufficient to manage portfolio risk, ensure an optimal level of collections and control the level of write-offs, resulting in lost opportunities for reinvestment and potential impact on the Agency’s overall effectiveness and reputation.
|ACOA improved work processes, enhanced guidance and reference materials that support program delivery, and expanded the availability and adequacy of tools to better support monitoring and oversight of portfolio activities. It continued focusing on training activities, sharing lessons learned and enhancing integration and collaboration across the Agency. It also focused on continuing development and enhancement of dashboards to support management information needs.||Enterprise Development
|Response to Opportunities and Management of Stakeholder Expectations
The risk that the Agency may not be able to effectively respond to opportunities and manage increasing client and stakeholder expectations.
|ACOA mitigated this risk through continued monitoring, effective communication, collaboration with stakeholders at the Agency’s many points of contact, and greater integration of the Agency’s planning and strategic decision-making processes.||Enterprise Development
After posting a decline in 2012, Atlantic Canada’s real gross domestic product (GDP) rose by 2.6% in 2013,[iv] higher than the average national increase of 2%,[v] supported by strong growth in Newfoundland and Labrador due to increased offshore oil production and continued investment spending in the resource sector. Economic growth in the other three Atlantic provinces was more subdued, with real GDP only advancing by a combined 0.5%.[vi]
The world economy continued to expand in 2013 but at a slower pace than in 2012, a downward trend observed since 2010. Despite the weakness in external markets, Atlantic Canadian exports increased in 2013, with growth in non-energy exports outpacing the national rate.
Increased global competition is requiring businesses in Atlantic Canada to become more competitive and productive. The R&D performance in Atlantic Canada (an indicator in understanding innovation and productivity levels) rose by an annual average of 4.9% from 2001 to 2011, exceeding the national increase of 2.9% – with improvement occurring in the private and higher education sectors. This is expected to contribute to addressing the results of a recent Statistics Canada survey from 2010 to 2012 (looking at businesses that introduced at least one type of innovation, whether product, process, organizational or marketing) that showed that enterprises in Atlantic Canada lag behind the national average in this area.
During fiscal year 2013-14, ACOA continued to demonstrate a strong commitment to delivering quality results for Canadians, with a focus on becoming more efficient and effective through transformed internal business processes and training. The Agency benefited from a strengthened integrated-risk-management (IRM) function, which helped focus efforts and distribute resources in areas where risks were greatest. ACOA updated its Corporate Risk Profile through a comprehensive and consultative assessment approach, and communicated risk management information, direction and accountabilities for IRM across the organization. Through the work of its Risk Management Committee and the engagement of its management team, ACOA demonstrated leadership and commitment to the implementation of a proactive and systematic approach to risk management.
Budgetary financial resources (dollars)
|2013-14 Main Estimates||2013-14 Planned Spending||2013-14 Total Authorities Available for Use||2013-14 Actual Spending (authorities used)||Difference: (actual minus planned)|
Human resources (full-time equivalents – FTEs)
|2013-14 Planned||2013-14 Actual||Difference (actual minus planned)|
Budgetary performance summary for strategic outcome and programs (dollars)
|Strategic Outcome, Programs, and Internal Services||2013-14 Main Estimates||2013-14 Planned Spending||2014-15 Planned Spending||2015-16 Planned Spending||2013-14 Total Authorities Available for Use||2013-14 Actual Spending (authorities used)||2012-13 Actual Spending (authorities used)||2011-12 Actual Spending (authorities used)|
|Strategic Outcome: A competitive Atlantic Canadian economy|
|Policy, Advocacy and Coordination||10,855,783||10,855,783||11,351,591||11,351,591||11,764,232||10,634,165||12,403,955||13,646,372|
|Internal Services Subtotal||27,606,110||27,608,110||25,145,234||25,145,234||30,141,664||28,746,598||34,881,448||40,023,217|
In 2013-14, planned spending of $300.0 million increased by $18.4 million, resulting in total authorities of $318.4 million. This occurred due to the following changes in authorities:
- Increases in spending authorities:
- $4.4 million reprofiled in support of the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund;
- $5.2 million made available from the collection of repayable contributions;
- $3.7 million for operating budget carried forward from 2012-13;
- $4.0 million for severance pay, parental leave and collective agreement increases; and
- $0.3 million for renewal of the Roadmap for Canada’s Official Languages (2013-2018).
- Transfers from other departments, including $1.2 million for advocacy activities related to international security. Transfers to other departments totalled $0.3 million for various initiatives.
- The foregoing increases in authorities were offset by travel reductions, which resulted in savings of $0.1 million.
Actual spending of $314.2 million resulted in a surplus of $4.2 million from total authorities of $318.4 million. The Agency will access a portion of this surplus through an operating budget carry forward of $3.4 million.
Alignment of 2013-14 Actual Spending with the Whole-of-Government Framework (dollars)
|Strategic Outcome||Program||Spending Area||Government of Canada Outcome||2013-14 Actual Spending|
|A competitive Atlantic Canadian economy||Enterprise Development||Economic Affairs||Strong Economic Growth||180,674,018|
|Community Development||Economic Affairs||Strong Economic Growth||94,103,327|
|Policy, Advocacy and Coordination||Economic Affairs||Strong Economic Growth||10,634,165|
Total Spending, by Spending Area (dollars)
|Spending Area||Total Planned Spending||Total Actual Spending|
The figure below illustrates the Agency’s actual spending from 2011-12 to 2013-14 and planned spending from 2014-15 to 2016-17.
The Agency’s planned spending levels stabilized in 2014-15 after declining from 2011-12 to 2013-14, largely due to sunsetting programs. The sunsetting funding of the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund decreased ACOA’s spending levels by $12.7 million in 2013-14. Other decreases in spending were mostly due to strategic savings identified in Budget 2011 and Budget 2012. The Agency continues to identify and implement cost efficiencies as well as improve the effectiveness of operations and programs to ensure value for taxpayers’ money.
For information on ACOA’s organizational votes and/or statutory expenditures, see the Public Accounts of Canada 2014 on the Public Works and Government Services Canada website.
[i] Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency Act, R.S.C., 1985, c. 41, 4th Supp.
[ii] “Type” definitions:
- New: newly committed to for fiscal year 2013-14
- Previously committed to: committed to one or two fiscal years earlier (i.e. 2011-12 or 2012-13
- Ongoing: committed to at least three fiscal years earlier (i.e. 2010-11 or earlier)
[iii] Kaizen is a Japanese word that means improvement. Kaizen is recognized worldwide as an important pillar of an organization’s long-term competitive strategy. ACOA has adapted this process to address a particular issue over the course of a week by asking employees to evaluate a specific process with improvement in mind and implementing the changes during the same time period.
[iv] Calculations by ACOA using Statistics Canada data, CANSIM Tables 379-0030 and 379-0031.
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