Simulation Exercise for Senior Executives, Level 3

As of June 30, 2023, this assessment centre will no longer be available. 

Target group

Federal public servants, preferably at the EX-2 level and external candidates at equivalent levels or higher.

Purpose of the Simulation Exercise

The Simulation Exercise for Senior Executives, Level 3, may be one component of the selection process for EX-3 level positions. The Simulation Exercise provides information on key leadership competencies and behaviours of candidates at that level. Information from the Simulation Exercise is used in combination with information from other sources to make selection decisions.

Key leadership competencies

The Simulation Exercise has been developed to assess the five key leadership competencies: Create Vision and Strategy, Mobilize People, Uphold Integrity and Respect, Collaborate with Partners and Stakeholders and Achieve Results.

Create Vision and Strategy

Leaders define the future and chart a path forward. They are adept at understanding and communicating context, factoring in the economic, social and political environment. Intellectually agile, they leverage their deep and broad knowledge, build on diverse ideas and perspectives and create consensus around compelling visions. Leaders balance organizational and government-wide priorities and improve outcomes for Canada and Canadians.

Mobilize People

Leaders inspire and motivate the people they lead. They manage performance, provide constructive and respectful feedback to encourage and enable performance excellence. They lead by example, setting goals for themselves that are more demanding than those that they set for others.

Uphold Integrity and Respect

Leaders exemplify ethical practices, professionalism and personal integrity. They create respectful and trusting work environments where sound advice is valued. They encourage the expression of diverse opinions and perspectives, while fostering collegiality. Leaders are self-aware and seek out opportunities for personal growth.

Collaborate with Partners and Stakeholders

Leaders are deliberate and resourceful about seeking the widest possible spectrum of perspectives. They demonstrate openness and flexibility to forge consensus and improve outcomes. They bring a whole-of-government perspective to their interactions. In negotiating solutions, they are open to alternatives and skillful at managing expectations. Leaders share recognition with their teams and partners.

Achieve Results

Leaders mobilize and manage resources to deliver on the priorities of the Government, improve outcomes and add value. They consider context, risks and business intelligence to support high-quality and timely decisions. They anticipate, plan, monitor progress and adjust as needed. Leaders take personal responsibility for their actions and outcomes of their decisions.


Multiple assessment techniques are used to assess candidates on the competencies and behaviours underlying the competencies. These exercises include a written summary, a presentation and a question period.

Written summary and presentation

In this exercise, the candidate is given the opportunity to deal with a number of issues and problems presented in the form of emails, letters and reports. While working alone, the candidate has to prepare and submit a written summary of the actions and the rationale, they intend to take on the issues and problems presented. Subsequently, the candidate makes an oral presentation to an assessment board, based on this material.

Question period

After the presentation, the assessors ask the candidate to answer a series of questions. These questions are based on the presentation and all material pertaining to it. The purpose of this question period is to clarify and/or challenge the courses of action chosen by the candidate.

Features of the Simulation Exercise

A written Assessment Report will be produced shortly after participation in the Simulation Exercise. The report will give a description of the competencies assessed, the candidate's ratings on each of the competencies and a summary of the candidate's performance.

Accommodation for persons with disabilities

If a candidate has special needs requiring accommodation, they should contact Assessment Services, PPC, at 819-420-8777 as soon as possible so that appropriate arrangements can be made.

If you would like any additional information, please contact:

Consultation Services
Personnel Psychology Centre
Public Service Commission of Canada
22 Eddy Street
Gatineau, Quebec  K1A 0M7

Telephone: 819-420-8671

Fax: 819-420-8594


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