Strategic framework – 2020 Welcome binder

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

Priorities for transformation 2019 to 20

Cross cutting themes

  • Indigenous Reconciliation
  • Vulnerable Groups
  • Gender Impact and Equality
  • Policy-Service Integration
  • Innovation and Experimentation
  • Accessibility

Policies and programs: Growth that benefits all

Diversity and growth

Support well-being and full and equal participation in Canada’s prosperity.

  • Support government investments in early learning and childcare including in Indigenous and Official Languages Minority Communities, and invest in early learning and child care innovation and reporting to support gender equality at home and in the workplace.
  • Pursue implementation of a new Indigenous Skills and Employment Training (ISET) Program to reduce the gaps between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians.
  • Reduce and prevent poverty and homelessness through the implementation of Opportunity for All, Canada’s first poverty reduction strategy and Reaching Home, Canada’s homelessness strategy.
  • Promote income security for Canadian seniors by implementing the Canada Pension Plan enhancement, Triennial Review reforms and proactive enrollment for contributors over the age of 70, as well as enhancing the Guaranteed Income Supplement earnings exemption to allow low-income seniors to keep more income from work.
  • Promote the well-being of seniors by using the New Horizons for Seniors Program to support projects that enhance the social inclusion of seniors and by engaging with Canadians, experts, and domestic and international partners on issues of interest to seniors.
  • Help to create a barrier-free Canada by implementing the Accessible Canada Act and complementary initiatives, introducing measures to increase the production of accessible materials for persons with print disabilities, and ensuring that the Canada Disability Savings Grant and the Canada Disability Savings Bond respond to the needs of persons with disabilities.
  • Strengthen the Social Security Tribunal of Canada’s recourse process to ensure it is responsive to the needs of Canadians.
  • Implement the foundational elements of a Social Innovation and Social Finance Strategy to generate inclusive economic growth alongside positive social and environmental impacts.
  • Invest in projects and capital assistance to celebrate, share knowledge and build capacity in Black Canadian Communities.

Adapting to a changing labour market

Help Canadians succeed in an evolving economy and changing labour market.

  • Help Canadians get the skills they need to succeed by supporting the introduction of the Canada Training Benefit.
  • Expand the Student Work Placement Program to provide access to students in all disciplines to work-integrated learning.
  • Make Canada Student Loans more affordable by lowering interest rates and by making the six-month non repayable period interest free, and more accessible by responding to the needs of vulnerable student loan borrowers, including those facing challenging life or financial circumstances.
  • Develop and manage a funding agreement with Indspire to provide Indigenous students with additional bursaries and scholarships to facilitate their participation in post secondary education.
  • Help adults return to school to retrain or upksill through Skills Boost.
  • Develop a framework for a new Apprenticeship Strategy to better support those aspiring to the skilled trades and employers who face challenges in hiring and retaining apprentices.
  • Establish the Global Talent Stream as a permanent program to help Canadian companies access top global talent.
  • Increase supports to vulnerable and under-represented youth to successfully transition into jobs through the modernized Youth Employment and Skills Strategy.
  • Scale up the Canada Service Corps to increase the skills and civic engagement of more youth.

A fair and safe workplace

Promote equality in the workplace and combat unsafe and unfair practices.

  • Address the gender wage gap, move forward with the bringing-into-force of the Pay Equity Act and implement pay transparency requirements.
  • Protect employees from harassment and violence in federally regulated sectors, including the federal public service and Parliament Hill.
  • Better protect workers and set the stage for good quality jobs by implementing amendments to modernize federal labour standards, supporting further study by an expert panel of complex issues related to federal labour standards, and strengthening the capacity of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.
  • Implement new measures to enhance compliance with, and enforcement of, the Canada Labour Code.
  • Expand the Wage Earner Protection Program to provide greater support to workers during difficult transitions.

Transforming our services


A world-class service experience with benefits and services delivered when needed.

  • Improve client satisfaction with the online experience by making online products easy to understand and easy to find/access.
  • Simplify and improve the experience of applying for programs or using services (e.g. standardize info and service tools, provide step-by-step and how-to video, simplified applications).
  • Make providing/receiving information fast and convenient (e.g. upload of documents for CPP-D, telephone self-service, proactive communication with clients).
  • Improve client engagement and feedback (e.g. client centric policy) to improve the service experience for Canadians and businesses.
  • Improve information sharing between programs and across departments to enable efficiencies for citizens and employers to “tell-us-once”.
  • Leverage artificial intelligence (AI) and emerging technologies in service delivery.
  • Strengthen the recourse process for EI, CPP, and OAS and make it easier to navigate and more responsive to client needs.


Accurate and consistent service.

  • Pursue service improvements (e.g. Benefits Delivery Modernization and OAS Stabilization initiatives) in support of modernizing benefits delivery platforms for ESDC’s statutory programs (EI, Pensions).
  • Implement Integrity Case Management.
  • Improve reporting against service standards to Canadians.
  • Develop an enterprise-wide Quality Framework to embed quality considerations in a consistent fashion at each stage of the policy-program-service continuum.
  • Strengthen tools and processes to safeguard the integrity of programs, services and operations.
  • Adopt the Business Number as the single identifier for employers/businesses.
  • Implement the Integrated Labour System.
  • Refresh the Identity Management Policy.


Issues resolved at first point of contact.

  • Leverage existing information to auto-enrol clients.
  • Improve response time by streamlining application processes and leveraging digital technology for service delivery.
  • Invest resources in areas of existing and potential inventories (e.g. EI processing and services, OAS and CPP application processing) and call centre improvements.
  • Explore reduction of administrative reporting burden for businesses/employers.
  • Migrate Service Canada’s call centres to more modern phone and information technology platforms.
  • Enhance Service Channels (In-person network, 1 800 O-Canada reprocurement, Channel Management Centre).
  • Enhance TFWP System and Web Service 2.0.
  • Establish modern business practices and improve clients’ service experience through implementation of the Integrated Channel Management Strategy (ICMS).


Services are accessible to all, with digital by choice

  • Improve access to agents by expanding Video Chat in SC Centres and moving forward with service improvements to Call Centres.
  • Expand efforts and pursue partnerships that allow us to serve groups and communities that are hard to reach and clients that have particular needs (e.g. Indigenous communities outreach, persons with disabilities, mobile outreach, P/T partnerships to service remote areas, authorize use of delegates to assist clients) to receive benefits (e.g. Canada Child Benefit).
  • Support digital service delivery through development of digital identity validation approaches and undertake pilots with My Service Canada Account (MSCA).
  • Provide more convenient access to information (e.g. enhanced Benefits Finder tool, Job Bank mobile app, Veterans Affairs).
  • Enhance self-service capabilities through an online portal to manage student loans and grants (e.g. reprocurement of CSLP services).
  • Enhance the delivery of social services at the community level by helping community organizations build capacity.
  • Help clients access the right services at the right time, encourage uptake and identify avenues to engage clients through enhanced service marketing.
  • Leverage our in-person network for service partnerships (e.g. Business Transformation Strategy for Passport services, biometrics data collection with IRCC).

Mobilizing our organisation

Evidence-based decision making

Develop the infrastructure, tools, skills and processes to modernize the way that data and analytics are used to make informed evidence-based decisions to improve programs and services.

  • Implement a Data Strategy with a focus on increasing access and security, building analytics capabilities and establishing modern data governance.
  • Develop a strategy and improve capacity to better measure gender and diversity outcomes in skills programs.
  • Develop and implement a new 3-year Research Strategy.
  • Support the government’s Open Data initiative.
  • Modernize privacy governance to enhance the use of data while ensuring the protection of personal information.

Modern and secure technology

Develop and implement modern and secure IT infrastructure that enables digital services and effective access to information.

  • Ensure that the benefits delivery systems are stable in advance of Benefits Delivery Modernization.
  • Provide employees with secure, flexible, accessible and adaptable tools that will encourage collaboration and increase productivity.
  • Advance information management practices so that our information and data assets can be used more effectively in support of our mandate.
  • Establish strong relationships with technology partners to increase responsiveness and ability to provide solutions to evolving business needs.
  • Enhance the Department’s emergency management and operational capacity through the implementation of an Emergency Management Application System and modernization of the National Operation Centre.

A productive and inclusive workplace

Support our workforce through transformation and ensure a safe, healthy workplace.

  • Strengthen the Workforce for the Future.
  • Enable a healthy, performing and inclusive workplace.
  • Modernize HR service and program delivery
  • Support the GoC and ESDC HR-to-Pay initiative.
  • Support the delivery of service excellence by ensuring our employees have all the structures and supports in place, through a holistic Service Excellence Workforce Framework.
  • Strengthen the continuity of service and enhance the physical security of employees, clients, information and facilities.

Resource management excellence

Strengthen project management and investment planning to direct resources to emerging priorities and deliver results.

  • Continue to strengthen and further integrate departmental Investment Planning, Performance Management and Enterprise Project Management practices.
  • Expand efforts to innovate the workplace and generate savings in our departmental accommodations.
  • Strengthen the integration and consistency of risk management across ESDC and enhance the use of risk information in decision making.
  • Ensure that Change Management strategies are incorporated to enable service transformation projects.

Departmental results framework at a glance

Figure 1: Departmental results framework at a glance
Figure 1: description follows
Figure 1: Departmental results framework at a glance – Text version

Core responsibility 1: Social development


Increase inclusion and opportunities for participation of Canadians in their communities.

Departmental results

  • Homelessness in Canada is prevented and reduced
  • Not for profit organizations, communities and other groups have an enhanced capacity to address a range of social issues such as the social inclusion of people with disabilities, the engagement of seniors, and support for children and families
  • Access to early learning and childcare is increased
  • Barriers to accessibility for people with disabilities are removed
  • Clients receive high quality, timely and efficient services that meet their needs

Program mapping

  • Reaching Home
  • Enabling Accessibility Fund
  • New Horizons for Seniors Program
  • Social Development Partnerships Program
  • Early Learning and Child Care
  • Canadian Benefit for Parents of Young Victims of Crime
  • Indigenous Early Learning and Childcare Transformation Initiative
  • Sustainable Development Goals Funding Program
  • Accessible Canada Initiative

Core responsibility 2: Pensions and benefits


Assist Canadians in maintaining income for retirement, and provide financial benefits to survivors, people with disabilities and their families.

Departmental results

  • Seniors have income support for retirement
  • People with disabilities and their families have financial support
  • Clients receive high quality, timely and efficient services that meet their needs

Program mapping

  • Old Age Security
  • Canada Pension Plan
  • Canada Disability Savings Program

Core responsibility 3: Learning, skills development and employment


Help Canadians access post-secondary education, obtain the skills and training needed to participate in a changing labour market, and provide supports to those who are temporarily unemployed.

Departmental results

  • More students from low- and middle-income families access and participate in post-secondary education.
  • Canadians receive financial support during employment transitions such as job loss, illness, or maternity/parental leave.
  • Canadians access education, training, and life-long learning supports to gain the skills and work experience they need.
  • Canadians participate in an inclusive and efficient labour market.
  • Clients receive high quality, timely and efficient services that meet their needs.

Program mapping

  • Employment Insurance
  • Labour Market Development Agreements
  • Workforce Development Agreements
  • Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities
  • Youth Employment Strategy
  • Canada Service Corps
  • Indigenous Skills and Employment Training Strategy
  • Skills and Partnership Fund
  • Union Training and Innovation
  • Literacy and Essential Skills
  • Future Skills Program
  • Enabling fund for Official Language Minority Communities
  • Canada Student Loans and Grants and Canada Apprentice Loans Program
  • Canada Education Savings Program
  • Apprenticeship Grants
  • Job Bank
  • Sectoral Initiatives Program
  • Skilled Trades and Apprenticeships (Red Seal Program)
  • Foreign Credentials Recognition Program
  • Temporary Foreign Worker Program
  • Student Work Placements
  • Skilled Trades Awareness and Readiness (STAR) Program

Core responsibility 4: Work conditions and relations


Promotes safe, healthy, fair and inclusive work conditions and cooperative workplace relations.

Departmental results

  • Work conditions are fair and inclusive
  • Labour relations are cooperative
  • Workplaces are safe and healthy
  • Clients receive high quality, timely and efficient services that meet their needs

Program mapping

  • Labour Relations
  • Occupational Health and Safety
  • Federal Workers' Compensation
  • Labour Standards
  • Workplace Equity
  • International Labour Affairs
  • Wage Earner Protection Program

Core responsibility 5: Information delivery and services on behalf of other Government departments


Provide information to the public on the programs of the Government of Canada and the department, and provide services on behalf of other government departments.

Departmental results

  • Clients receive high quality, timely and accurate government information and services that meet their needs
  • Canadians can obtain an error-free passport within Canada in a timely manner

Program mapping

  • Government of Canada Telephone General Enquiries Services
  • Government of Canada Internet Presence
  • In-Person Points of Service
  • Passport
  • Other Government Department Programs

Internal services

  • Management and Oversight
  • Communications
  • Legal
  • Human Resources Management
  • Financial Management
  • Information Management
  • Information Technology
  • Real Property Management
  • Acquisition Management
  • Materiel Management

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