CSIS is a true national service, and, as such, its resources and personnel are geographically dispersed across Canada. The geographic configuration, illustrated below, allows CSIS to closely liaise with its numerous federal, provincial and municipal partners on security issues of mutual interest.
The people of CSIS are a highly committed and professional group who work day in and day out to keep Canadians safe, while safeguarding their rights and freedoms.
Just like the people of Canada, we are a diverse workforce. Our diversity allows us to better understand the demographics of the Canadian communities we protect and gives us better tools to collect relevant and accurate intelligence.
With this in mind, CSIS continues to attract and retain a top performing and diverse workforce. Our team is passionate about promoting and maintaining a culture of operational excellence, employee engagement and inclusiveness where work is meaningful, employees are valued, and collaboration is celebrated.
CSIS has been recognized for innovation and leadership in the area of mental health and wellness. By building employee resilience and ensuring the well-being of our employees, CSIS is strategically situated to serve Canada and Canadians to the best of our abilities, while ensuring everyone is fully able to contribute to the fulfilment of our mission.
CSIS has adopted a holistic, team approach by taking into account the organizational efforts of prevention, promotion and intervention, while also considering the physical and psychological well-being of individual employees in the organization. Underpinning this approach are fundamental principles including diversity, communication, engagement, values and ethics, respect and civility, and leadership at all levels. At CSIS, everyone has a responsibility to ensure a healthy, safe and respectful work environment.
In an effort to promote culture change around mental health, CSIS developed and designed a Psychological Health and Safety Toolkit for Managers. This innovative and introspective tool was designed to provide managers and supervisors with questions to ask themselves around the thirteen psychosocial factors listed in the National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety. Answering these questions gives direction to managers on how they can support and promote a psychologically healthy, safe and respectful workplace. Due to overwhelmingly positive feedback, a second toolkit was created in 2017 – A Toolkit for Employees.
CSIS launched the Road to Mental Readiness (R2MR) Training for all employees in September 2017 as a preventative initiative to develop resilience in employees and destigmatize mental health issues in the workplace. This initiative helps reduce the potential of developing operational stress injuries, including post- traumatic stress, of personnel working in a high-stress environment. The Department of National Defence, which created and developed R2MR, provided “Training for Trainers” at CSIS. CSIS also hosted representatives from several other government departments in this training.
The Mental Health Commission of Canada published the Final Report for the Case Study to Implement the National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety. This concluded a three year research project in which CSIS, as one of 40 organizations across Canada, participated in the process of implementing The National Standard. The initial results of the Case Study Research Project showed that CSIS made substantial implementation progress across all five elements of the Psychological Health and Safety Management System. The final report provides a summary of promising practices and lessons learned in the journey to promote employee psychological health and safety.
In order to sustain these implementation efforts, CSIS signed on to participate in a Sustainability Project. The final results of the Sustainability project are available at
CSIS recruiting staff regularly attend events across Canada to find talent. They participate in information panels, promote CSIS careers at networking events, and, participate in university and college job fairs across the country.
CSIS has added a pilot to its proactive recruiting model by including on-site interviews. These give hiring managers valuable face-to-face time with potential applicants and, in turn, provide future hires with the opportunity to ask questions in person.
CSIS continues to foster recruiting partnerships with our federal partners through joint job fairs across Canada. Branded as the Federal Safety Security and Intelligence Career Fair (FSSI), the partners are committed to sharing best practices and recruiting talent to work in public safety. The partners include the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Public Safety (PS), Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), Correctional Service Canada (CSC), Communications Security Establishment (CSE) and the Department of National Defence (DND).
The Government of Canada expects that all policy proposals brought forward for consideration are informed and shaped by robust gender-based analysis. GBA+ is an analytical process used to assess how diverse groups of women, men and non-binary people may experience policies, programs and initiatives. The “plus” in GBA+ acknowledges that GBA goes beyond biological (sex) and socio-cultural (gender) differences. GBA+ also considers many other identity factors, like race, ethnicity, religion, age, and mental or physical disability.
To that end, CSIS has taken steps towards decision-making based on subject matter expertise, assessments and qualitative and quantitative analysis. This approach helps ensure that efforts are focused on threat activities and do not target Canadian communities based on bias or assumptions.
Consideration of GBA+ identity factors has been incorporated in our planning and program decisions in a number of areas. For example, CSIS currently delivers unconscious bias training to all new employees, supervisors and interviewers. A CSIS task force has been looking at areas where a formal GBA+ framework can be applied to ensure that CSIS effectively prioritizes its resources and investigative efforts.
GBA+ will specifically assist CSIS in:
Prioritizing and focusing operational activities based on evidence-based decision-making.
Supporting operational desks with enhanced resourcing / targeting / collection initiatives;
Better understanding CSIS targeting activities, allowing for refined initiatives;
Enforcing the compliance with policies and procedures in place to protect rights and freedoms.
CSIS will continue to make efforts to allow for more strategic and comprehensive integration of GBA + across the Service.