Joint Audit and Evaluation of the Department’s Electronic Document Management System (SharePoint)

Final Report

Prepared by:
Internal Audit Directorate

August 31, 2020

Table of Contents

Executive Summary

What we examined

This joint audit and evaluation engagement (engagement) examined the Department of Finance Canada (the department)’s new electronic document management system (SharePoint) to assess whether SharePoint is achieving results as the department expected and whether there are mechanisms in place to ensure that the transition to SharePoint is being effectively managed.

Why it is important

The department relies heavily on the availability and accessibility of information to conduct its business and to achieve its goal of creating a healthy economy for all Canadians. Employees require modern and practical tools to enable them to readily access information and work effectively and collaboratively. These tools need to be interconnected, intuitive and accessible, and include updated business processes to make day-to-day work efficient and value added.Footnote 1 It is important that employees be trained in their use and functionality, and that these tools work properly and are well managed.

In 2017, the department implemented SharePoint, a new electronic document management system, with the objective of enabling collaboration, workflow, digitalization, and search capabilities. A transformation initiative, SharePoint introduced new software, tools, and processes to employees to help the department modernize its work practices. The successful implementation of SharePoint within the department and its continued use, including exploring new opportunities to leverage the use of the tool, are important in helping the department achieve its business goals.

What we found

Overall, we found that the SharePoint transformation initiative has made an important positive difference in collaboration across the department, however, with further exploration and employee awareness, more can still be achieved from its use.

To assess the performance of SharePoint in fulfilling its expected results, the engagement team, in consultation with the department’s Information Management and Technology Directorate (IMTD), identified the intended outcomes that were expected to be achieved by SharePoint at the department level.Footnote 2 This was necessary so that the evaluation could be performed, as the department did not define the intended outcomes of the SharePoint initiative at the outset of this project.

We found that important intended outcomes were achieved, including increased collaboration and improved compliance with some Treasury Board policy requirements. However, less progress was being made regarding the specific intended outcome related to information dissemination (for example, one branch has developed a portal to enable the outward sharing of its information). Also, branches were investing limited time and resources with the purpose of identifying other potential uses of SharePoint to help modernize their work practices. This will influence SharePoint’s success in achieving its long-term outcomes and contribution to the department’s business goals.

We found that mechanisms were in place to manage the department’s transition to SharePoint. Even though most of these mechanisms (i.e. roles and responsibilities for governance and change management, plans, guidance and training) were defined, implemented and monitored by IMTD, we found that direct input from the branches would have been beneficial. We also found that the guidance, training and information management best practices provided could have been more aligned to employee needs. The reason for this is that about half of the branches had not proceeded with assessing their specific SharePoint needs, nor had they developed business rules to allow them to identify their particular training needs or to capitalize on the transition to the SharePoint environment. Without the necessary effort by all stakeholders to determine department’s specific document management needs and to seek expertise and guidance on the work practices, it will be difficult for the department to achieve all the intended outcomes of the SharePoint initiative. Moreover, this could hinder the department’s ability to leverage additional opportunities to use SharePoint to transform the way it conducts business.

We found that no Champion or governance committee was formally assigned to coordinate and oversee the transition to SharePoint at the departmental level, including the horizontal oversight of branch activities and expected deliverables. As a result, the department’s approach to planning, monitoring and reporting was not comprehensive and systematic. Although IMTD led much of the planning, monitoring and reporting at the outset of the initiative, this was limited to project level outcomes specific to IMTD’s activities. The department did not give consideration to the planning, monitoring and reporting related to the activities and deliverables of all SharePoint stakeholders (senior management, IMTD, branch management and end users) who would have been expected to contribute to achieving SharePoint's departmental-level outcomes.

A formalized, comprehensive, and systematic approach to monitoring is necessary to assess the department’s progress against the intended outcomes of SharePoint, to identify gaps and opportunities, to evaluate plans and priorities, and to make sound decisions for the future of SharePoint.

The findings and recommendations arising from this engagement may be applied to future transformational initiatives undertaken by the department.

Original signed by:

Kari Swarbrick
Chief Audit Executive

Background

  1. This assurance engagement of the department’s Electronic Document Management System (SharePoint), was conducted in accordance with the Department of Finance Canada’s 2019–2020 to 2021–2022 Risk-based Audit Plan which was approved by the Deputy Minister on July 12, 2019.  

Information Management and Governance

  1. The Deputy Minister is the administrative head of the department. He chairs the Executive Committee, which has final approval of matters related to corporate management policy, stewardship, and key strategic decisions.
  2. The Deputy Minister is responsible for the effective and well coordinated management of information throughout the department. There are two additional groups of stakeholders with roles and responsibilities for information management (IM) within the department. The first group is the Information Management and Technology Directorate (IMTD), which is managed by the Chief Information Officer. IMTD is responsible for providing effective and innovative information and technology management solutions in support of the department’s business objectives. This includes providing support and guidance to employees to carry out their document management responsibilities. The second group of stakeholders are branch employees (branch management and end users) who use information and are responsible for document management of their specific business lines.
  3. Some Assistant Deputy Ministers (ADMs) or Associate ADMs are appointed by the Deputy Minister as Champion(s). Each Champion plays a key role in providing leadership on a variety of issues associated with corporate priorities. The Workplace Champion chairs the Workplace Committee. The Committee’s mandate is to promote better work tools and work processes to improve employee productivity and happiness. Its range of responsibilities covers the evaluation of information technology, IM, and work processes, including providing guidance on suggested SharePoint improvements and priorities.
  4. In October 2015, the Executive Committee approved an IM strategy with an objective of moving the department to an electronic document and records management system.Footnote 3 To support the IM strategy, in October 2016, the department announced that it would acquire the SharePoint software to manage its electronic documents. Since December 2017, SharePoint has been fully accessible across the department’s networks.
  5. The SharePoint implementation is a transformative initiative with the goal of improving collaboration and information sharing across the department, while facilitating document review and approval. SharePoint is a system that manages the collection, creation, organization and dissemination of documents, however, it has very limited features to manage the retention and disposition of records.Footnote 4
  6. Given the scale and impact of this transformation initiative, it was decided that this engagement would contain both an audit and evaluation component. This joint audit and evaluation would permit the Internal Audit Directorate (IAD) to evaluate to what extent the department has successfully transitioned to the new SharePoint platform and to audit whether the department has the mechanisms in place to ensure it can leverage SharePoint’s capabilities to meet its evolving needs.

Objective

  1. The objective of this joint audit and evaluation engagement (engagement) is two-fold:
    1. Assess the performance of the Department of Finance Canada (the department)’s new electronic document management system (SharePoint) against the stated key objectives and the extent to which departmental activities are advancing the stated objectives and fulfilling its expected results.
    2. Provide reasonable assurance that the transition to SharePoint has been effectively managed to meet its objectives.

Scope

  1. The engagement scope includes an evaluation of the results of SharePoint’s implementation to date, as well as an audit of the processes and support mechanisms in place to optimize the utilization of SharePoint going forward.
  2. The engagement scope does not include:
    • Consideration of Budget SharePoint, which was covered by the recent Audit of Information Management of the Federal Budget Process; and
    • Activities related to the SharePoint-GCDocs implementation/integration project, as these activities are being managed as a separate project.

Approach

  1. This engagement was completed by IAD staff and an external evaluation consultant.
  2. Our work on this audit and evaluation included:
    • A review and analysis of project-related documentation;
    • A review of external documentation relevant to SharePoint implementation in other government departments and to the management of transformation projects in general;
    • Interviews with management and staff of the department;
    • Development of a logic model illustrating SharePoint’s activities, outputs, and outcomes (Annex B) to inform the evaluation criteria; and
    • A survey of selected departmental employees who have been playing an active role in their branches’ transition to SharePoint.
  1. This joint audit and evaluation was conducted with a goal of minimizing the duplication of work. Where possible, staff members were interviewed only once by both audit and evaluation, however all document review, surveys and analyses were performed separately. The resulting joint conclusion and recommendations are presented in this report.
  2. The fieldwork for this engagement was substantially completed on February 19, 2020.

Opinion

  1. Sufficient and appropriate procedures were performed and evidence gathered to support the accuracy of the engagement’s conclusion. The engagement findings and conclusion are based on a comparison of the conditions that existed at the date of the engagement, against established criteria that were agreed upon with management.
  2. The findings and conclusion are only applicable to the entity examined and for the scope and time period covered by the engagement.

Statement of Conformance

  1. The engagement was conducted in conformance with the International Standards for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing and in accordance with both the Treasury Board Policy on Resultsand the Policy on Internal Audit.
  2. The reporting was supported by the Internal Audit Directorate’s quality assurance and improvement program.

Joint Detailed Findings and Recommendations of the Audit and Evaluation

Governance and Change Management

  1. The Department of Finance Canada (the department)’s new electronic document management system (SharePoint) was approved as a transformation initiative in support of the department’s organizational priorities.
  2. One of the objectives of this engagement was to assess whether processes and mechanisms were in place to ensure the department is effectively managing the transition to SharePoint to achieve its organizational goals.

Roles and responsibilities were generally identified and communicated, but they were not clearly defined for department-wide oversight

  1. We expected to find that roles and responsibilities related to governance and change management were clearly defined and communicated.
  2. We found that IMTD identified and communicated the expected roles and responsibilities for all SharePoint stakeholders. This included IMTD's specific roles and responsibilities at a functional-level and in regards to change management, and those of senior management and branches for change management. However, we found that no specific roles were identified and communicated for the coordination and oversight of SharePoint department-wide and for the oversight of branch activities. While the Workplace Committee played an advisory role during the implementation and adoption of SharePoint, it had no formal monitoring responsibilities, enforcement or decision-making powers, to ensure that necessary changes were implemented. 
  3. We found that IMTD had both monitored and reported to senior management committees on the progress and achievements it made regarding technical and functionality improvements to SharePoint. IMTD had also presented on available training and necessary change management initiatives.
  4. In 2018 presentations to the department’s Executive Committee and the Management Advisory Committee, IMTD recommended actions for senior management and branches to ensure a smooth transition to SharePoint. It was recommended that stakeholders :
    • develop and document branch specific business rules and best practices to apply in the SharePoint environment;
    • identify needs and request SharePoint features to meet business needs;
    • identify and support branch “super users”; and
    • create branch “Tiger Teams” to lead the SharePoint implementation and coordinate these responsibilities.
    We found that these recommended actions had not been adopted by all branches and we could not find evidence that they had been formally and systematically monitored and reported at any level.
  1. We found that less than half of branches had developed branch-specific business rules to leverage SharePoint for their needs. Also, the interviewees in half of the branchesFootnote 5 could not identify who the super users were in their respective branch. Additionally, some individuals were generally regarded as “super users” because of their role in attending information management-related meetings and not because of their SharePoint expertise.
  2. Comprehensive and systematic oversight for a large transformation initiative such as the SharePoint implementation is important to ensure that the department has all the information necessary to assess department-wide progress. This oversight would ensure ongoing monitoring of stakeholder involvement in identifying:
    • issues unique to specific branches; and
    • opportunities for improvement at the branch and department-wide level.
    Regular reporting on progress to senior management is also necessary to ensure accountability for a project of this magnitude.

Recommendation #1
The Departmental Coordinating Committee should designate a Champion or a governance committee to oversee the department’s transition to SharePoint and to regularly report on its progress against the intended results.

Plans are being developed for the SharePoint initiative, but they could be improved by including branch activities and expected deliverables

  1. We expected that plans were developed to identify the remaining work required to improve SharePoint features and their usage, to ensure that the initiative is generating intended departmental-level outcomes.
  2. We found that IMTD had developed strategic plans for the department’s overall IM practices, and functional level plans for specific SharePoint implementation and improvements activities. We found that these plans were aligned with the business objectives attributed to SharePoint, specifically the enabling of workflow, collaboration, digitalization and search capabilities.
  3. We found no evidence that other SharePoint plans were developed within the department to provide a comprehensive overview of all the necessary deliverables and stakeholder outputs that were expected to contribute to achieving SharePoint's departmental-level outcomes, including the role that branch users would play in the improvement of the SharePoint tool.
  4. During the course of this engagement, the departmental Workplace Committee developed terms of reference and a work plan that includes the responsibility to provide “guidance on prioritization improvements to SharePoint (usage, permissions, search function, etc.).” Also, IMTD and the Workplace Champion have begun to work together to discuss options going forward to address opportunities and to prioritize future SharePoint improvement initiatives.
  5. Recognizing that the success of this transformation initiative is dependent on the commitment of all stakeholders involved (senior management, IMTD, branch management and end users), it is particularly important that future SharePoint improvement initiatives capture all stakeholders’ planned activities and deliverables. This would increase the department’s ability to make informed decisions and to undertake timely corrective action to achieve intended departmental-level outcomes.

Recommendation #2
The Champion or governance committee responsible for department-wide oversight should establish the mechanisms required to facilitate further comprehensive SharePoint planning that includes all stakeholders’ contributions, and regular measurement and reporting at the departmental-level. 

Achievement of Outcomes

  1. One of the objectives of this engagement was to evaluate SharePoint performance to date and determine the extent to which departmental activities were advancing the stated objectives (to enable collaboration, workflow, digitalization, and search) and achieving intended outcomes (in other words fulfilling its expected contribution to the department).
  2. The evaluator reviewed records prepared by the department at the outset of the SharePoint transformation initiative. These records disclosed information on SharePoint’s “objectives”, “results”, and project-level “outcomes”; however, the records did not clearly define the intended outcomes at the departmental level.
  3. The engagement team, in consultation with IMTD, developed a logic model (Annex B) to facilitate this evaluation. This helped the department to clarify the SharePoint initiative’s intended outcomes and to help the evaluator assess achievements to date. This logic model provides a visual illustration of activities, outputs, and outcomes (short-term, medium-term and long-term) for the initiative. The intended outcomes stated in this logic model form the basis for assessing SharePoint’s success as a transformation initiative to date. The logic model was shared with the ADM Corporate Services Branch, as well as with the Champion and Vice-Champion of the Workplace Committee.

Important intended outcomes for SharePoint are being achieved

  1. The engagement team assessed the department's achievement of short-term and medium-term outcomes identified in the logic model.Footnote 6
  2. Regarding short-term outcomes, we found that the SharePoint software had been successfully installed and deployed, making all its document management features available to staff. Further, we found that IMTD had developed and provided a comprehensive set of training materials and courses to enable staff to understand and use the software. Hence, the short-term intended outcomes had been achieved.
  3. Regarding medium-term outcomes, we found that SharePoint had made an important positive difference in terms of improving collaboration in preparing documents within the department. All branches reported that they have benefitted from the SharePoint-enabled capacity to edit documents jointly and to control document versions better than they could before.
  4. SharePoint is contributing in important ways to the applicable policy requirements concerning document handling and management. For example, SharePoint is facilitating the secure sharing of documents across the department.Footnote 7 SharePoint is also helping to ensure that mechanisms are in place to support information and data life cycle management.Footnote 8 Specifically, it requires authors to classify documents as either transitory, corporate, administrative or reference material.
  5. SharePoint provides the department with a technology platform that allows for the addition of new software products that have the potential to improve departmental operations. This is identified as an intended medium-term outcome. The addition of an enhanced software to manage “workflow” is an example of a new functionality that was considered and implemented on the SharePoint platform. The department is also exploring an add-on software to enhance auto-tagging and auto-classification functionality in SharePoint.
  6. SharePoint works in an integrated manner with some business tools, such as Microsoft Office Suite, which is also identified as an intended medium-term outcome.

Less progress is being made toward some intended outcomes

  1. We found that many branch users do not yet understand the full potential of SharePoint. Therefore these users cannot fully assess whether SharePoint might offer additional benefits to their operations. While some branches have come up with innovative ways to use SharePoint’s information dissemination capability – for example, one branch has developed a portal to enable the outward sharing of its information, and another branch reported they had developed a group homepage to assist with document control – most branches are not using SharePoint to its fullest capabilities. Most branch users interpreted “information dissemination” to simply mean the ability to provide a document’s link in an email, rather than sending the document as an attachment. As a result, only a small number of dissemination innovations have been implemented. Also, only one of the department’s branches indicated that it was planning to explore new areas for the SharePoint application. Therefore, potential future innovation is limited in the area of information dissemination.
  2. One of SharePoint’s intended long-term outcomes is for the department to leverage modern information management tools and technologies to contribute to departmental efficiency and effectiveness. However, in order to achieve this outcome, branches will need to identify what changes to their business processes would contribute to better program delivery performance and better understand the full potential of SharePoint to modernize their workplace environment.
  3. We found that users from more than half of the branches indicated that the department’s SharePoint system was not meeting all their basic functionality needs (for example, collaboration constraints to use Excel in SharePoint) and/or they are experiencing operational performance difficulties with SharePoint (for example, difficulty in using the Search feature to find documents). Some users may be less willing to explore new SharePoint-supported capabilities until their basic needs are being met. We note that there are collaborative efforts underway between the branches, the Workplace Committee and IMTD to address these issues.
  4. For the department to benefit fully from its investment in SharePoint, branch users need to explore how the tool could increase their respective and collective effectiveness and efficiency. Decisions on whether or not to make investments would then be based on more complete information.
  5. Each branch needs to conduct its own analysis, by exploring new SharePoint features and capabilities, assessing the potential benefits and costs of their implementation, and potential innovative uses, in order for the department to achieve all its outcomes related to SharePoint. To facilitate this assessment, branch users would benefit from expert advice and assistance to understand more fully how SharePoint could support their respective needs and benefit their operations. Also, in order to conduct these assessments and obtain the desired improvements to operations, senior management would have to give consideration and allocate sufficient time to this activity.
  6.  There may also be department-wide benefits from SharePoint. A department-wide coordination of branch assessments could help to identify potential solutions that reflect branch needs while considering department-wide opportunities. IMTD could facilitate this process by providing assistance and advice on the feasibility of the proposed branch-level solutions and how multi-level branch solutions could benefit the entire department. Concurrently, the designated SharePoint oversight Champion or governance committee would provide broader guidance and leadership on these solutions across the department. These coordinated actions could help ensure that SharePoint’s intended outcomes are achieved to the optimal benefit of branches and the department.

Recommendation #3
The Champion or governance committee should oversee branch actions and progress in defining their document management needs and exploring how SharePoint could increase their operational effectiveness and efficiency.

Training, Guidance and Best Practices

Training and guidance tools are available but they could be better aligned with individual branch needs

  1. Training and guidance tools are a major component of the successful implementation of a transformation initiative. The expectation was that adequate training and guidance tools were available to employees to allow them to use and benefit from the new electronic document management system.
  2. While guidance has been accessible and training has been offered to employees, we found that these tools could have been more aligned to the needs of employees. We found that many branches requested additional SharePoint training tailored to their specific business needs and best practices around information management and collaboration. Alternatively, tailored training and guidance to suit all users’ needs may be difficult to provide, unless branch users define and communicate their document management needs. 
  3. The vast majority of departmental employees participated in training provided by IMTD on the basic functions of SharePoint and document management practices of the new environment during a six-month period in 2017, prior to SharePoint’s roll-out on the department’s networks. Since that time, the department has offered two types of introductory training to employees, one on SharePoint and another on information management, which are both mandatory for new and returning employees. While invitations were sent to new and returning employees to attend the information management training, employees had to make a request to attend the SharePoint training. Our review of available data confirmed that employee uptake for both types of training was limited, even upon receiving invitations (initial and follow up email notices) to take the courses:
    • Between January and October 2019, only 40% of the new and returning employees who were invited to take the information management introductory course had attended it. The attendance rate between March 2018 and December 2019 was 47%.
    • Between January and October 2019, 67% of the employees who requested the SharePoint training had attended it. Data was not available to assess the attendance rate between March 2018 and December 2019.
  1. Aside from the introductory training on SharePoint and information management, employees were able to request more in-depth group training on SharePoint’s features. In 2018, 45 branch workshops were conducted on four different topics.Footnote 9 Since then, the number of workshops requested by branch employees has dropped, with only five workshops requested in 2019.
  2. In October 2019, IMTD staff began the annual update of their three-year plan and, as part of this process, they conducted a survey and consulted with branch representatives to better understand their current IM/IT needs. Results of this assessment showed that about half of the responding branches requested more SharePoint training or expressed the need to develop more expertise within branches. Given that participation to available training remains limited, employees could benefit from better communication of corporate training offerings. As a result of their annual update of their three-year plan, IMTD sought the Workplace Committee’s agreement to play a role in strengthening the decision-making processes related to SharePoint moving forward. In January 2020, the Workplace Committee provided IMTD with their top three SharePoint priorities and revised its structure to include a Steering Group, with representatives from every branch and various occupational groups, to coordinate the development and implementation of initiatives.
  3. Also, in conjunction with the Workplace Committee, IMTD was exploring options to improve awareness and best practices, increase uptake, including additional training and identification of SharePoint “super users” in each branch, as a mean to increase overall SharePoint knowledge across the branches. Our engagement consultations revealed that some branch representatives did not know the functionalities that SharePoint could offer them and accordingly they did not know what training to ask for. Thus a gap has been created between the knowledge needed and the guidance and training being provided.

There are opportunities to better leverage lessons learned and best practices

  1. Our expectation was that branches and the department were leveraging lessons learned and identifying best practices to achieve SharePoint’s key objectives.
  2. We found that during the initial phases of the SharePoint implementation and improvement initiatives (between October 2016 and April 2018), lessons learned sessions at the functional-level were conducted by IMTD and results were used to inform the focus of future phases of the project. In addition to considering these lessons learned, we also found that IMTD identified information management best practices for SharePoint users. These best practices had been communicated through postings on the department’s intranet and through targeted discussions between branches and IMTD. We found that new and relevant best practices may not be captured and shared as the last posting of best practices on the department’s Infosite was in February 2018 and the last shared updates of best practices on SharePoint occurred in July 2018. Subsequently, short video tutorials reiterating these best practices were displayed on the department’s television screens.
  3. We found that during 2018, SharePoint knowledge and best practices were shared through the Information Management Community of Practice (IM CoP), which was created at the suggestion of IMTD to maximise the uptake of SharePoint within the department. This forum was intended for the branches to discuss common SharePoint adoption issues and help foster the use of SharePoint across the department. The IM CoP was chaired by a business-branch lead, comprised of branch representatives, and supported by IMTD. According to its terms of reference, the IM CoP served to identify and prioritize pre-existing issues; generate and test solutions; ensure consistent IM and SharePoint usage approaches across the department; and provide an inter-branch forum for discussion. By the end of 2018, branch participation had significantly decreased and the IM CoP ceased its activities, thus further reducing opportunities for branches to proactively exchange knowledge, ideas, and best practices. As a result, branches’ interest in these learning opportunities to better understand how SharePoint works and how it could increase their operational effectiveness and efficiency could not be sustained.
  4. We found that information about branch “Tiger Teams” was not readily available. However, through interviews with selected branch representatives, we were able to determine that most branches did not create SharePoint “Tiger Teams” or similar working groups. Where branches created these groups, we were told that they had been inactive for some time, leaving users without a forum to discuss SharePoint-related issues or best practices, either within their branch or between branches.
  5. Training, guidance, and best practices have to be further aligned with branch and departmental business needs to facilitate the proper management of the SharePoint transformation initiative department-wide. While branches have to play a lead role in defining their document management needs, they will benefit from continued IM and IT expertise. Until this happens, it would difficult to tailor training and guidance to suit users’ needs.

Recommendation #4
The Corporate Services Branch (the Information Management and Technology Directorate and the Human Resources Learning Group), if necessary with the assistance of outside expertise, should provide branches with advice, solutions, and training tailored to their specific SharePoint needs to improve their document management practices.

Conclusion

  1. While the department did not clearly identify its intended outcomes for SharePoint at the outset, the engagement team, in consultation with IMTD, was able to produce a logic model to help evaluate the implementation of SharePoint and conclude that it has made an important positive difference in terms of improving collaboration in preparing and handling documents. There are still expected medium-term and long-term outcomes that can be achieved through further exploration and awareness, including information dissemination and leveraging SharePoint to implement other advances in IM/IT technology. There are still functionality and operational performance limitations and/or issues to resolve that may hinder opportunities to implement more sophisticated SharePoint solutions.
  2. The department has established several processes and mechanisms to support the utilization of SharePoint and to leverage the tool to meet the transition’s objectives. Nevertheless, there are opportunities for improvement related to the initiative’s oversight, its comprehensive planning, and further branch engagement in the identification of document management needs.

Management Response and Action Plans

Overall Management Response
Management agrees with all recommendations.
Recommendations Management Response and Action Plans
The Departmental Coordinating Committee should designate a Champion or a governance committee to oversee the department’s transition to SharePoint and to regularly report on its progress against the intended results. Management Response:
The Departmental Coordinating Committee agrees with the recommendation.

Action Plan:
  • At its meeting on July 15, 2020, the Departmental Coordinating Committee decided to designate the Workplace Committee Champion to oversee the department’s transition to SharePoint and to regularly report on the progress made against the intended results.
Lead:
Workplace Committee Champion

Target Date:

Achieved on July 15, 2020
The Champion or governance committee responsible for department-wide oversight should establish the mechanisms required to facilitate further comprehensive SharePoint planning that includes all stakeholders’ contributions, and regular measurement and reporting at the departmental-level.  Management Response:
The Workplace Committee agrees with this recommendation.

Action Plan:

The Workplace Committee will develop the mechanisms required to facilitate further comprehensive SharePoint planning that includes all stakeholders’ contributions, and regular measurement and reporting at the departmental-level. 
  • The Workplace Committee will ensure that future SharePoint planning includes the activities and contributions expected from all stakeholders (i.e. senior management, IMTD, branch management and end users). These plans will be clearly and timely communicated to all stakeholders. 
  • The Workplace Committee will establish a performance measurement, monitoring and reporting framework for the continued transition to SharePoint (by Q3 2021–22). This framework will include:
    • Agreed-upon expected department-wide outcomes/results;
    • Performance indicators and targets to measure progress against the expected stakeholders’ activities; and
    • Contributions identified in the SharePoint plans.
  • The Workplace Committee Champion will report to the Management Advisory Committee, the Departmental Coordinating Committee and/or to the Executive Committee on the progress made by the department on its transition to SharePoint. The frequency of this reporting will be determined by the committee.
Lead:
Workplace Committee Champion

Target Date:
Ongoing commitment
The Champion or governance committee should oversee branch actions and progress in defining their document management needs and exploring how SharePoint could increase their operational effectiveness and efficiency. Management Response:
The Workplace Committee agrees with this recommendation.

Action Plan:
  • The Workplace Committee will solicit, collect and analyse information from branches on the progress the branches have made in defining their document management needs. To facilitate this process, a tracking tool will be developed by Q1 2021–22.
Lead:
Workplace Committee Champion

Target Date:
Ongoing commitment
The Corporate Services Branch (the Information Management and Technology Directorate and the Human Resources Learning Group), if necessary with the assistance of outside expertise, should provide branches with advice, solutions, and training tailored to their specific SharePoint needs to improve their document management practices. Management Response:
The Assistant Deputy Minister of the Corporate Services Branch agrees with this recommendation.

Action Plan:
  • CSB will consult with the Workplace Committee Champion or governance committee (identified by Recommendation 2) to solicit branch requirements for training tailored to their specific SharePoint needs to improve their document management practices (Q3 2020–21).
  • CSB will develop and implement renewed learning offerings based on feedback received from branches (Q4 2020–21).
  • Upon the identification by branches of the challenges they are facing in adapting their business processes to a document management and collaboration environment supported by SharePoint, CSB will provide the necessary assistance and guidance to branches (including organizing workshops and guiding them towards appropriate resources) on their specific SharePoint and document management needs (ongoing commitment).
Lead:
Assistant Deputy Minister, Corporate Services Branch

Target Date:

March 31, 2021

Annex A: Engagement Criteria

Evaluation Criterion: SharePoint is achieving its expected objectives.

Audit Criterion: The department has processes and support mechanisms in place to optimize the utilization of SharePoint.       

Annex B: Logic Model – The department’s Electronic Document Management System (SharePoint)

Logic Model – The department's Electronic Document Management System (SharePoint).
  • text version

    Logic Model

    Activities

    • Install and configure a new electronic document management solution and provide access
    • Define, review and update business processes and practices as required
    • Manage change, and increase employee's skills, IM knowledge and awareness
    • Monitor and assess activities and changes at the individual and organizational level

    Outputs

    • Implemented software
    • Materials for communications, hands-on training, workshops, guidance/meetings with teams, etc.
    • Corporate-level governance, expectations, configuration

    Outcomes
    Short-Term
    1 year

    Improved information and document management, including

    • A more unified document repository
    • Version control, tracking change history, audit
    • Ease of use
    • Standardized management practices
    • Improved IM practices (e.g., tagging)
    • Improved security practices

    New business tools are available to employees (e.g., information dissemination, work collaboration, co-authoring, search capability)

    Outcomes
    Medium-Term
    3-5 years

    The department’s document handling and management practices reflect current IM/IT and business expectations (i.e., multiple systems/tools working seamlessly together), and conform more to policy expectations

    The department is benefiting from new ways of working, including improved:

    • Collaboration, co-authoring
    • Information dissemination

    The department is levering SharePoint to implement other advances in IM/IT technology

    Outcomes
    Long-Term
    5+ years

    • Information management (IM) and information security is modernized
    • The department levers modern IM tools and technologies to contribute to departmental efficiency and effectiveness

Annex C: Acronyms And Definitions

Acronym Name in Full
ADM Assistant Deputy Minister
IM CoP Information Management Community of Practice
IM/IT Information Management / Information Technology
IMTD Information Management and Technology Directorate
TBS Treasury Board Secretariat of Canada
Term Definition
SharePoint stated key objectives SharePoint’s objectives as stated in departmental documents (presented to the Management Advisory Committee in 2015): to enable collaboration, workflow, digitalization, and search capabilities.
Expected results /
Expected objectives
The end results expected from implementation of the new electronic document management system (SharePoint), its intended outcomes; SharePoint’s expected contribution to the department.
Intended outcomes The end results expected from implementation of the new electronic document management system (SharePoint), its expected contribution to the department.

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