LHHR 13-08: Sample Letter from Deputy Heads to Employees

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Enhancements to the Policy Framework on Priority Appointments

I am writing today to inform you of enhancements to the policy framework on priority appointments in the public service and to encourage you to take the time to familiarize yourself with the existing policy requirements and roles and responsibilities in administering priority entitlements.

As you know, following the implementation of Spending Review 2012, your senior management team has been committed to supporting employees whose positions have been affected by workforce adjustment. We have been working within our organization and with the Public Service Commission (PSC) to place as many persons with a priority for appointment as quickly as possible in order to meet our collective goal of ensuring continuity of employment for these employees. The placement of priority persons helps the public service retain the valuable knowledge, skills and experience of its employees.

Working in concert with our organization, the PSC has undertaken several initiatives over the past year to support the placement of as many priority persons as possible.  These initiatives have included system upgrades to improve transparency and efficiency and achieve better matches between priority persons and vacant positions.

Another initiative has been to find ways to continue to improve the overall awareness and understanding of existing policy requirements and roles and responsibilities in administering priority entitlements – a need that has been expressed by managers, priority persons and human resources (HR) personnel. The PSC developed and conducted extensive consultations on proposals with deputy heads, heads of HR, managers and bargaining agents.

While there have been no substantial changes to the policy framework or roles or responsibilities in administering the priority system, important clarifications have been made to better support our organization.

As a result, I am pleased to share with you today the key elements of the enhanced policy framework on priority appointments in the public service:     

  • The Priority Appointment Policy that provides in one document all of the existing PSC Appointment Policy requirements related to considering and appointing priority persons;
  • The Priority Administration Directive that outlines existing roles and responsibilities of the PSC, organizations and priority persons in administering priority entitlements and forms part of the Priority Appointment Policy; and,
  • The revised Resourcing Model that has been re-designed to improve understanding that considering priority persons is an independent step that should be undertaken prior to proceeding with an appointment process.

A description of each policy instrument or tool and Internet links is provided below.

In addition to describing roles and responsibilities, the Priority Administration Directive includes a Manager’s Attestation Form that managers will be required to sign to attest that we would be prepared to appoint the priority person to a suitable position in our organization, commensurate with their qualifications, if such a position were available. This document formalizes the attestation that organizations have been providing to the PSC informally, to date, when registering a priority person in the system for referrals.

The Priority Appointment Policy and the revised Resourcing Model reflect existing requirements that are already in effect. The Priority Administration Directive will be in effect on September 12, 2013 .

Information sessions and tools to help you understand the enhanced policy framework on priority appointments will be provided by/can be accessed by contacting (insert name of HR directorate contact here).

Continuing to improve our overall awareness and understanding of existing policy requirements and roles and responsibilities in administering priority entitlements will help support the placement of the more than 2 700 priority persons currently registered with the PSC for referral to vacant positions. Of this total, close to 1 000 persons have a surplus or lay-off priority for appointment as a result of workforce adjustment.

Priority appointments are an important way to ensure continuity of employment for employees whose positions have been affected by workforce adjustment. The placement of priority persons also helps the public service retain the valuable knowledge, skills and experience of its employees.

Please join me in ensuring that we do everything possible as an organization to support priority persons and to appoint them to vacant positions when they meet the essential qualifications of a position being staffed in our organization.

Sincerely,

Name and title of deputy head

Attachments:

Highlights of the Enhanced Policy Framework on Priority Appointments

  1. Priority Appointment Policy:
    The Priority Appointment Policy brings together into one document all of the existing policy requirements related to considering and appointing priority persons.   It sets out the expectations that must be met, including:
    • Respecting any requirements and procedures implemented to administer priority entitlements;
    • Ensuring that persons entitled to a priority entitlement have access to continued employment opportunities;
    • Ensuring the timely assessment of priority persons with regard to essential qualifications;
    • Appointing a priority person before any other appointment process is initiated unless appointing this person would result in another person having a priority entitlement;
    • Respecting the order of precedence of priority entitlements; and
    • Respecting the Public Service Commission’s (PSC’s) Appointment Policies.
  2. Priority Administration Directive:
    The Priority Administration Directive forms part of the Priority Appointment Policy and sets out how expectations are to be met.  It outlines the roles and responsibilities of the PSC, organizations, and priority persons at key steps, including:
    • Registration of priority persons;
    • Providing support to priority persons;
    • Referrals of priority persons;
    • Assessing and providing feedback to priority persons;
    • Priority clearance;
    • Resolving issues; and
    • Appointment.
    Managers play an important role in supporting priority persons in their search for continued employment and in providing meaningful work opportunities and references to hiring organizations. The Directive also includes a Manager’s Attestation Form that managers must sign prior to registering a priority person to attest that the home organization would be prepared to appoint the employee to a suitable position in that organization, commensurate with their qualifications, if such a position were available.  For more information on the Manager’s Attestation Form, please consult section 1.4 of the Guide on Priority Administration as well as the Questions and Answers for managers.
  3. Revised Resourcing Model:
    The revised Resourcing Model is intended to improve awareness and understanding that considering priority persons is an independent step that should be undertaken prior to proceeding with an appointment process. In situations where no priority persons are found qualified for appointment, the manager would then proceed with another type of appointment process. 
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