Putting people first at the Canada Revenue Agency

People First Story

We will remember the COVID-19 pandemic as a time of great change. The word "pivot" became known as more than a basketball move where you plant one foot and rotate your body around it as you look for the perfect pass. Barmak is an outreach officer for the Canada Revenue Agency who works in Montreal's regional Tax Services Office, and he knows all about the power of a good pivot.

Across Canada and throughout the year, organizations host free tax clinics through the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program, where trained volunteers prepare taxes for eligible individuals. Melissa Valencia is a program officer in the Community Outreach and Support Division at the Canada Revenue Agency, which offers guidance and support to the program, to ensure it is in tune with the needs of the organizations, volunteers, and clients it serves. In the simplest of terms, Melissa spends the better part of her day doing whatever she can to make tax-filing easier for people. She believes that a sensitive and kind approach allows her to learn from program participants and advocate on their behalf.

Yash knew that Microsoft Teams instant messaging and captioned video calls would be a game changer for the way people communicated within the workplace, formally and informally. As an employee with a hearing impairment at the Canada Revenue Agency, Yash understood how the Microsoft Teams chat platform would make his everyday work so much easier.

In March, the COVID-19 pandemic suddenly changed how the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and its employees had to operate. Many shifted to working virtually and had to rely on online collaboration. John began working remotely seven years ago, so he knew what the CRA workforce would be facing. John is a technical program manager for the CRA’s Information Technology Branch (ITB) and has been a leader in the development of the CRA’s online work environment implementation of Microsoft Teams.

Last December, the Finance and Administration (FAB) Branch launched the Service Enhancement project in support of the Canada Revenue Agency’s (CRA’s) service transformation agenda and People First philosophy. Paula, a team member on the project, knows that in order to provide better tax services to Canadians, internal services such as FAB, must embrace the People First philosophy and place their internal clients at the centre of everything they do.  

There is never a dull moment in my work as a Senior Public Consultations and Stakeholder Engagement Advisor at the Public Affairs Branch (PAB) at the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)! I help the Agency put people first by planning, designing, and implementing public consultations that help us interact with Canadians from various walks of life, as well as those who interact with the Agency on their behalf. It's my job to help internal partners think about the best time, place, and way to reach Canadians' in a meaningful way, and keep their voices at the centre of everything we do.

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