Evaluation of the Official Languages Centre of Excellence Initiative

In support of the Horizontal Evaluation of the Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality 2008–2013: Acting for the Future

Final Report
Approved on

Internal Audit and Evaluation Bureau

Table of Contents


Abbreviations and Acronyms
CALDECH Centre d'avancement et de leadership en développement économique communautaire de la Huronie
CPSA Canada Public Service Agency
FAA Financial Administration Act
HRMAF Horizontal Results-Based Management and Accountability Framework
OCHRO Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer
OLA Official Languages Act

OLB

Official Languages Branch
OLCE Official Languages Centre of Excellence
Roadmap Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality 20082013: Acting for the Future
Secretariat Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat

Executive Summary

The Internal Audit and Evaluation Bureau conducted an evaluation of the Official Languages Centre of Excellence (OLCE) Initiative within the Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer (OCHRO) of the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat (the Secretariat). The evaluation was part of the Secretariat's five-year evaluation plan and was carried out in accordance with the Treasury Board Policy on Evaluation.

The purpose of the evaluation was to assess the relevance and performance of the OLCE Initiative for the period from 2008 to 2012 and to meet the accountability requirements of the Horizontal Evaluation of the Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality 2008–2013: Acting for the Future (the Roadmap) led by Canadian Heritage.

Profile of the OLCE Initiative

The Roadmap represents a $1.1 billion government-wide investment over five years to enhance and expand action across the Government of Canada to increase the benefits of linguistic duality and extend them to all Canadians. The commitment included $17 million ($3.4 million annually) for the OLCE Initiative to undertake activities that would support the Roadmap and that would allow the Treasury Board fulfill its responsibilities under Part VIII of the Official Languages Act (OLA). Under Part VIII of the OLA, the OLCE Initiative was expected to provide general direction and monitor, on behalf of the Treasury Board, the implementation of the Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA in federal institutions:

  • Communications with and services to the public (Part IV);
  • Language of work (Part V); and
  • Participation of English-speaking and French-speaking Canadians (Part VI).

Evaluation Context

The evaluation was conducted between and and assessed the relevance and performance (effectiveness, efficiency and economy) of the OLCE Initiative from 2008 to 2012. It also examined to what extent the OLCE Initiative's governance, accountability and service delivery structures enabled it to achieve its outcomes and the immediate Roadmap result of "reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service."

The lines of evidence consisted of a document and file review, an online questionnaire, a discussion group, interviews and two case studies.

Methodological limitations included limited program documentation and data due to various reorganizations, and the absence of a performance measurement strategy linked to the OLCE Initiative's expected outcomes over the five-year period. To mitigate these limitations, more emphasis was placed on qualitative data and on the triangulation of the various data sources to validate the results.

Relevance

The evaluation revealed an ongoing need for the OLCE Initiative to support the government, the Treasury Board and federal institutions in responding to Canadians' needs with respect to Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA.

The OLCE Initiative aligns with government and Secretariat priorities, roles and responsibilities. Under Part VIII of the OLA, the Treasury Board has responsibility for the general direction and coordination of the policies and programs of the Government of Canada relating to the implementation of Parts IV, V and VI in all federal institutions subject to the OLA. The OLCE Initiative also aligns with the Secretariat's strategic outcome of "government is well managed and accountable, and resources are allocated to achieve results" through its People Management program activity.

The OLCE Initiative is therefore relevant because it addresses a continued need, aligns with government and Secretariat priorities, and is mandated by legislation as a federal responsibility.

Performance (Effectiveness, Efficiency and Economy)

Achievement of Immediate Outcomes

Although the OLCE Initiative has undergone some reorganizations and transformations since 2008, the evaluation results showed that it has made progress on the following immediate outcomes, which are outlined in the OLCE Initiative logic model:

  • Better understanding of the linguistic duties of federal institutions under the OLA and its Regulations;
  • Sharing of best practices relative to official languages; and
  • Greater dialogue with key stakeholders and target groups.

The evaluation results were mixed regarding progress on the other immediate outcomes:

  • Greater knowledge by the Secretariat and federal institutions concerning the official languages situation in federal institutions; and
  • Greater knowledge by the Secretariat, target groups and key stakeholders concerning OCHRO's official languages files, challenges, priorities and accomplishments.

In addition, the evaluation showed that a number of federal institutions and some interviewees have concerns about the approach used to inform them on the official languages situation in the public service. In their view, the current approach does not provide a full picture of the official languages situation, results from institutions are not verified, and the data are difficult to compare year over year.

Achievement of Intermediate and Final Outcomes

It was still too early to fully assess the extent to which the intermediate and final outcomes were being achieved. However, the evaluation indicated that some progress has been made on the following intermediate outcomes:

  • Federal institutions more committed to ensuring linguistic duality in the federal public service;
  • Federal institutions better able to comply with Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA and its Regulations; and
  • Secretariat better able to support the President and the Treasury Board in exercising their roles.

Some evidence also demonstrated progress toward achieving the final outcome of "better application of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA and its Regulations within federal institutions." Almost half of federal institutions and interviewees believed that the OLCE Initiative supported the achievement of this outcome. In addition, despite certain concerns raised about the service delivery model, nearly half of federal institutions, with some variation, believed that the OLCE Initiative was an effective mechanism for achieving the intermediate and final outcomes. However, federal official languages champions and the Commissioner of Official Languages have expressed concern about how past reorganizations of the OLCE Initiative will affect the application of the OLA by federal institutions.

Because compliance with Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA and its Regulations is intrinsically linked to the concept of reinforced linguistic duality in the public service, it is reasonable to expect that the OLCE Initiative is contributing to the Roadmap's immediate result.

The enabler model adopted by the Secretariat represents a major transformation for the OLCE Initiative. The contribution of that model to the intermediate and final outcomes is therefore not expected to be fully evident for several years. A future evaluation, supported by a robust performance measurement strategy, would be well positioned to fully assess the extent of the OLCE Initiative's contribution in this regard.

Contribution of the OLCE Initiative's Governance Structure, Service Delivery and Accountability Model to Outcomes

Based on the evaluation, the OLCE Initiative's placement within the Secretariat was appropriate and somewhat effective; however, its placement within OCHRO presents certain challenges related to visibility and to effectiveness in supporting the achievement of intermediate and final outcomes given the Secretariat's role.

Federal institutions and interviewees expressed mixed views about the appropriateness of the service delivery model and, specifically, about the level of support provided to federal institutions. Although some respondents from the target groups believed that the enabling role complemented the role of institutions, other interviewees thought that the OLCE Initiative could fulfill its role more effectively by adopting an approach that balances horizontal and customized support.

The OLCE Initiative's accountability model aligns with the model proposed by the Roadmap and with the Secretariat's enabler role. The OLCE Initiative reported its performance through the Roadmap's performance measurement strategy, which was linked to the activities and outputs of the 2008 logic model and not to the outcomes of the updated logic model.

Demonstration of Efficiency and Economy

The resources for the OLCE Initiative are part of the Secretariat's ongoing reference levels. Because they were not broken down by activity in the updated logic model, it was not possible to attribute specific outputs and outcomes to budget items in the OLCE Initiative. In 2011, the Secretariat created a fund centre exclusively for the OLCE Initiative to help plan and monitor expenses incurred.

The OLCE Initiative used all of its resources to produce the expected outputs, which supported the achievement of expected outcomes. Based on the data collected, the OLCE Initiative could not have achieved the same results with fewer resources. Nevertheless, federal institutions had mixed views as to whether the OLCE Initiative could have achieved better results with the same resources.

The evaluation made five recommendations:

  1. Develop and communicate a formal strategic plan for the OLCE Initiative.
  2. Review the existing logic model to ensure that it continues to reflect key activities and outputs and that these are clearly linked to expected outcomes.
  3. Develop a performance measurement strategy that aligns with the logic model, and communicate it to federal institutions and key stakeholders.
  4. Develop and implement an engagement approach that would do the following:
    • Clarify current and emerging challenges faced by federal institutions; and
    • Enhance federal institutions' understanding of the OLCE Initiative's mandate, structure, delivery approaches, products and services.
  5. Examine opportunities for improving the tracking and reporting of OLCE Initiative expenditures that correspond to the components outlined in the logic model.

A Management Response and Action Plan have been developed to address these recommendations.

1. Introduction

The Internal Audit and Evaluation Bureau conducted an evaluation of the Official Languages Centre of Excellence Initiative (OLCE Initiative) within the Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer (OCHRO) of the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat (the Secretariat). The evaluation was part of the Secretariat's five-year evaluation plan, and was carried out in accordance with the Treasury Board Policy on Evaluation.

The purpose of the evaluation was to assess the relevance and performance of the OLCE Initiative for the period from 2008 to 2012 and to meet the accountability requirements of the Horizontal Evaluation of the Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality 2008–2013: Acting for the Future (the Roadmap) led by Canadian Heritage.1

Specifically, the evaluation was to report to the Secretariat and to Canadian Heritage on the contribution of the OLCE Initiative to "reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service," a stated immediate result of the Roadmap.

This report is organized as follows: section 2 provides the Initiative's profile; section 3 describes the evaluation context; section 4 presents the key findings; section 5 provides the conclusions and recommendations; and section 6 presents the Management Response and Action Plan.

2. Profile of the OLCE Initiative

2.1 Context and Description

Recognition of the equal status of English and French in Canada dates back to Confederation, when the Constitution Act of 1867 recognized the use of both languages in Parliament and in federal courts. That status was reinforced in 1969 by the first Official Languages Act (OLA) and in 1982 by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (the Charter). The Charter declares English and French as Canada's official languages and provides for their equality of status in Parliament and in the Government of Canada.

The new OLA of 1988 expanded on the principles set out in the Charter and in earlier legislation and clarified requirements with respect to the following:

  • Communications with and services to the public (Part IV);
  • Language of work (Part V); and
  • Participation of English-speaking and French-speaking Canadians (Part VI).

It also set out the responsibilities of the Treasury Board (Part VIII), in particular, those related to the establishment of policies to give effect to Parts IV, V and VI in federal institutions2 and the monitoring, audit and evaluation of the effectiveness and efficiency of federal institutions' policies and programs relating to official languages.

From the 1970s to 2003, the Treasury Board was supported by the Official Languages Branch (OLB) of the Secretariat in carrying out its responsibilities. As the Treasury Board's centre of expertise for official languages, the OLB was mandated to support federal institutions by doing the following:

  • Developing policies and regulations;
  • Providing advice on the implementation of the OLA;
  • Sharing information; and
  • Undertaking audit and monitoring activities.

In addition, the President of the Treasury Board tabled in Parliament, annual reports on the status of official languages in federal institutions.

The OLB's service delivery approach was based on customized services provided by portfolio officers. Each portfolio officer was responsible for a certain number of institutions that were subject to the OLA. The portfolio officers provided advice and feedback to the institutions and evaluated and monitored the performance of official languages programs.

In 2003, the Action Plan for Official Languages was established, representing an investment of additional funds in the OLB over five years. That same year, the OLB's responsibilities were transferred to the Public Service Human Resources Management Agency of Canada, which subsequently became the Canada Public Service Agency (CPSA). In 2008, the CPSA's responsibilities for official languages were integrated into the commitments of the Roadmap through the OLCE Initiative.

As announced in the 2007 Speech from the Throne and Budget 2008, the Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality 2008–2013: Acting for the Future represented a $1.1-billion government-wide investment over five years to enhance and expand action across the Government of Canada to increase the benefits of linguistic duality and extend them to all Canadians. The Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages coordinated the implementation of the Roadmap, supported by the concerted efforts of 15 federal institutions. The investment included a $17 million commitment for the OLCE Initiative to undertake activities that would support the Roadmap.

Accountability for the OLCE Initiative was outlined in the Roadmap's Horizontal Results-Based Management and Accountability Framework (HRMAF). Specifically, the OLCE Initiative was to undertake activities that would contribute to the Roadmap's immediate result of "reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service." That contribution was to be made through activities that support the Treasury Board in fulfilling its responsibilities under Part VIII of the OLA. Under Part VIII provisions, the OLCE Initiative was expected to provide general direction and monitor, on behalf of the Treasury Board, the implementation of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA in federal institutions so that:

  • Canadians can communicate with and receive services from federal institutions in either official language (Part IV, "Communications with and Services to the Public");
  • English and French are the languages of work in federal institutions (Part V, "Language of Work"); and
  • English-speaking and French-speaking Canadians have equal opportunities for employment and advancement in federal institutions, and the composition of the workforce of federal institutions tends to reflects the presence of both official language communities of Canada, taking into account the characteristics of individual institutions, including their mandates, the public they serve and their location (Part VI, "Participation of English-speaking and French-speaking Canadians").

In 2009, the CPSA was reorganized and became the Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer (OCHRO) as a result of the recommendations made by the Prime Minister's Advisory Committee on the Public Service. This reorganization led to a major transformation of the OLCE Initiative that involved the following:

  • The refocusing of key activities and the adoption of a new service delivery model to better ensure that deputy heads have the flexibility to assume full responsibility for managing their official languages programs;
  • Significant workforce reduction; and
  • Transfer of certain related functions and the staff associated with them to other programs in OCHRO.

The OLCE Initiative's service delivery model shifted from one focused on customized services provided by portfolio officers to one focused on the following:

  • Developing policy instruments and regulations;
  • Providing horizontal interpretation and advice;
  • Developing tools;
  • Monitoring performance;
  • Preparing an annual report on the status of official languages in federal institutions; and
  • Supporting the President of the Treasury Board in exercising his official languages responsibilities.

The intent of this shift was to provide institutions direction, coordination, as well as monitoring and reporting tools. The new approach was aligned with the Secretariat's transition to an enabling approach that supports deputy head accountability.

2.2 Reach

The OLCE Initiative interacts with federal institutions that are subject to Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA, various target groups, stakeholders and other interested parties that are influenced by and benefit from its expertise and support.

Target groups include the following:

  • The President of the Treasury Board and senior management of the Secretariat and OCHRO;
  • Program sector analysts at the Secretariat who review Treasury Board submissions from federal institutions; and
  • Policy sector analysts at the Secretariat.

Key stakeholders include the following:

  • Canadian Heritage (including the Official Languages Secretariat);
  • Public Service Commission of Canada;
  • Canada School of Public Service;
  • Translation Bureau;
  • Department of Justice Canada;
  • Privy Council Office; and
  • Council of the Network of Official Languages Champions.

Interested parties include the following:

  • National Joint Council;
  • Fédérations des communautés francophones et acadienne du Canada; and
  • Quebec Community Groups Network.

2.3 Governance

The OLCE Initiative is managed by the Governance, Planning and Policy Sector within OCHRO and reports on its results to the Official Languages Secretariat of Canadian Heritage. The OLCE Initiative's governance structure and its relationship to the Roadmap are shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1: OLCE Initiative Governance Structure
OLCE Initiative Governance Structure. Text version below:
Figure 1 - Text version

This graphic illustrates the governance structure of the Official Languages Centre of Excellence Initiative (hereinafter the OLCE Initiative) as well as the Roadmap for Canada’s Linguistic Duality 2008-2013: Acting for the Future (hereinafter the Roadmap).

The graphic indicates that the OLCE Initiative is within the Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer of the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat (hereinafter the Secretariat).

Under the OLCE Initiative, the Secretariat contributes to the Roadmap, especially to its immediate result of: "Reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service". This immediate result of the Roadmap aims to contribute to its intermediate result of: "Strengthened capacity of the Government of Canada on official languages". As well as, its intermediate result aims to contribute to the Roadmap ultimate result of: "Canadians enjoy the benefits of linguistic duality, live and work in communities that reflect Canadian values with respect to the use of English and French, and have access to government services in the language of choice".

This graphic illustrates also that the Secretariat reports on the achievement of the OLCE Initiative to Canadian Heritage through the Canadian Heritage Departmental Performance Reports, the horizontal evaluation and the final Roadmap report. The Secretariat reported also to the Interdepartmental Committees.

Regarding the Roadmap, the graphic illustrates that it is coordinated by Canadian Heritage. In addition, Canadian Heritage coordinates the interdepartmental committees, the Departmental Performance Reports, the horizontal evaluation and the final Roadmap report. Under the Roadmap, Canadian Heritage reports to Parliament through its Departmental Performance Report and its Roadmap Final Report.

The Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages is supported by the Committee of Assistant Deputy Ministers on Official Languages (CADMOL), which acts on behalf of the Roadmap's 15 federal partners. CADMOL provides direction to official languages programs in the federal public service. It is supported by three interdepartmental committees:

  • The Interdepartmental Policy Committee, which offers an information-exchange forum for the federal partners in support of a coordinated approach to the Official Languages Program;
  • The Interdepartmental Management Committee for the Official Languages Program, which facilitates and structures interdepartmental coordination for the Official Languages Program, and specifically for the Roadmap, by assessing its implementation and strengthening the management and reporting processes; and
  • The Coordinating Committee on Official Languages Research, which ensures that official languages research is coordinated and that all findings are widely distributed.

2.4 Accountability

The OLCE Initiative reports on its performance through the following:

  • The Secretariat's Reports on Plans and Priorities and Departmental Performance Reports;
  • Canadian Heritage's Reports on Plans and Priorities and Departmental Performance Reports; and
  • An evaluation of its relevance and performance.

The OLCE Initiative's activities are reported on in the President of the Treasury Board's annual report on the implementation of official languages programs in federal institutions (part of the President's responsibilities under section 48 of the OLA). Furthermore, under subsection 56 (1) of the OLA, it is the duty of the Commissioner of Official Languages to ensure that federal institutions comply with the Act. The standing committees on official languages of the House of Commons and the Senate, in accordance with section 88 of the OLA, review on a permanent basis any regulations and directives made under the OLA and the reports of the Commissioner, the President of the Treasury Board and the Minister of Canadian Heritage.

2.5 Resources

A total of $17 million over five years was committed to the OLCE Initiative to support the implementation of activities that contribute to the Roadmap's immediate result of "reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service." This funding was allocated to four activities:

  • Monitoring ($4.5 million);
  • Developing policy instruments ($5.8 million);
  • Support and guidance ($4.5 million); and
  • Information sharing ($2.2 million).

2.6 Logic Model

The logic model is a visual representation of the OLCE Initiative. It identifies the links between its activities and the achievement of its outcomes.

The OLCE Initiative's logic model was first developed in 2008 to illustrate the commitments of the CPSA related to the above-mentioned allocation of funds. Figure 2 shows the 2011 update of the logic model and is a graphic depiction of how the activities and outputs of the OLCE Initiative relate to the following:

  • The immediate, intermediate and final outcomes, including the strategic outcome of the Secretariat; and
  • The immediate result of the Roadmap.
Figure 2: Logic Model of the OLCE Initiative
Logic Model for the Official Languages Centre of Excellence Initiatives. Text version below:
Figure 2 - Text version

This graphic illustrates the results chain of the logic model of the Official Languages Centre of Excellence Initiative (hereinafter the OLCE Initiative). The logic model shows that the final outcome of the OLCE Initiative is "Better application of Parts IV, V and VI of the Official Languages Act and its Regulations within federal institutions"

This final outcome aims to contribute to the immediate result of the Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality 2008-2013: Acting for the Future as follows: "Reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service". The final outcome aims also to contribute to the strategic outcome of the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat (hereinafter the Secretariat: "Government is well managed and accountable, and resources are allocated to achieve results".

The OLCE Initiative has three intermediate outcomes which aim to contribute to its final outcome and are presented as follow: "Federal institutions more committed to ensuring linguistic duality in the federal public service"; "Federal institutions better able to comply with Parts IV, V and VI of the Official Languages Act and its Regulations"; and "Secretariat better able to support the President and the Treasury Board in exercising their roles".

Five immediate outcomes aim to contribute to the intermediate outcomes. The first three immediate outcomes aim to contribute to first two intermediate outcomes and are: "Better understanding of the linguistic duties of federal institutions under the Official Languages Act and its Regulations"; "Sharing of best practices relative to official languages"; and "Greater dialogue with key stakeholders and target groups". A fourth immediate outcome aims to contribute to second and third intermediate outcomes and is: "Greater knowledge by the Secretariat and federal institutions concerning the official languages situation in federal institutions". The fifth immediate outcome aims to contribute to third intermediate outcome and is: "Greater knowledge by the Secretariat, target groups and key stakeholders concerning Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer's official languages files, challenges, priorities and accomplishments".

Four outputs clusters aim to achieve the immediate outcomes. The first and second outputs cluster aim to achieve the first third immediate outcomes. The first outputs cluster is "Regulatory proposals; Policy instruments; and Advice on linguistic duties to be included in the instruments of other policy centres". The second outputs cluster is: "Horizontal interpretations of, and advice on, the application of the Official Languages Act, and its Regulations, policy instruments and Appendix E; Advisory committees, Network of Official Languages Champions, Workshops and Best practices forums; and Publications and tools". The third outputs cluster aims to achieve the third immediate outcome and is: "Data from information systems, Performance evaluations of federal institutions, under the Management Accountability Framework; and Annual Reports". The fourth outputs cluster aims to achieve the fourth immediate outcome and is: "Strategic advice to management, target groups and key stakeholders; Public environment analysis; Meetings with target groups, key stakeholders and other interested parties; Briefings and correspondence; Recommendation follow-up; and Representation on various interdepartmental committees".

Four activities aim to achieve the outputs clusters. The first activity aims to achieve the first outputs cluster and is: "Develop and update regulatory instruments and policies on official languages". The second activity aims to achieve the second outputs cluster and is: "Provide support and horizontal advice to federal institutions and Treasury Board Secretariat on the application of the Official Languages Act and its Regulations". The third activity aims to achieve the third outputs cluster and is: "Assess institutions' performance". The fourth activity aims to achieve the fourth outputs cluster and is: "Coordinate parliamentary and strategic activities".

3. Evaluation Context

This section details the evaluation's purpose and scope, issues and questions, methodology and limitations.

The Secretariat's Internal Audit and Evaluation Bureau conducted the evaluation with assistance from an external consulting firm. The evaluation was supported by a working group that included representatives from the OLCE Initiative and from Statistics Canada.

3.1 Purpose and Scope

The evaluation was conducted between and and had a dual purpose. First, it assessed the OLCE Initiative's relevance and performance (effectiveness, efficiency and economy) from 2008 to 2012. Second, it examined the extent to which its governance, accountability and service delivery structures contributed to the achievement of the OLCE Initiative's outcomes and the extent to which these outcomes contributed to the immediate Roadmap result of "reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service."

3.2 Issues and Evaluation Questions

The evaluation addressed the following issues and questions.

Relevance

Continued need for the OLCE Initiative

  • To what extent does the OLCE Initiative continue to address a demonstrable need and is responsive to the needs of Canadians?

Alignment of the OLCE Initiative with government priorities

  • To what extent are the OLCE Initiative's objectives aligned with federal government priorities and the Secretariat's strategic outcome?

Alignment of the OLCE Initiative with federal roles and responsibilities

  • To what extent does the mandate of the OLCE Initiative align with the roles and responsibilities of the federal government?

Performance (effectiveness, efficiency and economy)

Achievement of expected outcomes by the OLCE Initiative

  • To what extent have the OLCE Initiative's activities and outputs contributed to the achievement of the expected immediate outcomes of increased understanding, dialogue, sharing of best practices and knowledge concerning implementation of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA among the target groups and key stakeholders?
  • To what extent has the OLCE Initiative achieved its intermediate and final outcomes, as well as the Roadmap immediate result?

Contribution of the OLCE Initiative's governance structure, service delivery and accountability model to its outcomes

  • To what extent are the governance structure, service delivery model and accountability model appropriate to achieve the OLCE Initiative's outcomes?

Demonstration of efficiency and economy

  • To what extent did the OLCE Initiative's resources contribute to the production of expected outputs and outcomes?

3.3 Evaluation Methodology

The evaluation findings, conclusions and recommendations were based on the analysis and triangulation of information derived from the following multiple lines of evidence:

1. Document and File Review

A document and file review was conducted of the OLCE Initiative. The publications issued by OCHRO, the Secretariat, Canadian Heritage, the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages, and the parliamentary standing committees on official languages and official language minority communities were also reviewed.

Additional documents were reviewed in support of two case studies used in the evaluation, including media articles and the reports of the Prime Minister's Advisory Committee on the Public Service.

2. Online Questionnaire

An online questionnaire was administered to 181 federal institutions subject to the OLA. The response rate was 48% (86 institutions). The purpose of the questionnaire3 was to gather data from federal institutions subject to Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA. It contained 22 multiple-choice questions with optional fields where respondents could insert comments and explanations.

3. Discussion Group

A discussion group consisting of 11 representatives from the federal institutions was formed to clarify and to provide more details on the issues identified in the responses to the online questionnaire.

4. Interviews with target groups, key stakeholders and interested parties

Structured and semi-structured interviews were conducted with representatives from 11 organizations to address issues related to the relevance and performance of the OLCE Initiative. The interview guide contained 18 questions, which guided the discussions. The organizations were as follows:

  • Department of Justice of Canada;
  • Public Service Commission;
  • Canada School of Public Service;
  • Canadian Heritage;
  • Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, which included senior management and program managers and analysts from the OLCE Initiative and policy sectors;
  • Privy Council Office;
  • Translation Bureau;
  • Council of the Network of Departmental Official Languages Champions;
  • National Joint Council Subcommittee on Official Languages;
  • Fédération des communautés francophones et acadienne du Canada; and
  • Quebec Community Groups Network.

5. Case Studies

Two case studies were conducted to obtain a deeper understanding of the OLCE Initiative's performance in relation to its enabling role and its governance structure. Information for the two case studies was obtained from the document review and from the responses to the online questionnaire and the interviews.

The first case study, entitled "Demonstration of the Enabling Role of the Secretariat with Respect to Implementation of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA," was based on the Supreme Court of Canada's decision in DesRochers v. Canada (Industry), also known as the CALDECH decision.4

The case study focused on the role of the OLCE Initiative following the decision in order to analyze the impact of the current service delivery and accountability model on its performance. The case study made it possible to gather information on the following:

  • The enabling role adopted by the OLCE Initiative; and
  • The roles and responsibilities of the OLCE Initiative and its relationships with institutions and stakeholders regarding implementation of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA, both before and after this Supreme Court of Canada decision.

The second case study, entitled "Relevance of the Governance Structure and Its Impact on the Expected Outcomes," provided a means to evaluate the impact of the current governance structure on the OLCE Initiative's performance and understanding of federal institutions and key stakeholders.

3.4 Limitations

As required in all Government of Canada evaluations, pursuant to the Treasury Board Policy on Evaluation, this section describes limitations5 associated with the methodology and the approaches taken to mitigate them. The findings of this evaluation were limited by certain factors listed below.

  • Documentation and data were limited as a result of a few reorganizations of what are now OCHRO and the OLCE Initiative. In particular, limited foundational documentation existed on the OLCE Initiative (e.g., a strategic plan outlining priorities).
  • The absence of a performance measurement strategy linked to expected outcomes limited the types of data that could be collected.
  • Certain interviewees, particularly from the target groups and key stakeholders, were not in a position to respond to questions about logic model outcomes that were internal to the Secretariat.

To mitigate these limitations, the evaluation relied upon various internal documents identified during the document review, and placed additional reliance on qualitative data in some instances. Drawing from the multiple lines of evidence, triangulation of the data sources was used to confirm the validity of the evaluation results.

4. Key Findings

Key evaluation findings are presented below, organized by the core evaluation issues examined. For clarity, "interviewees" refers to the respondents from the target groups, key stakeholders and interested parties who were interviewed as part of the evaluation.

4.1 Relevance of the OLCE Initiative

This section presents the evaluation findings on the continued need for the OLCE Initiative and its alignment with federal priorities, roles and responsibilities.

4.1.1  To what extent does the OLCE Initiative continue to address a demonstrable need and is responsive to the needs of Canadians?

The evaluation results indicated that the OLCE Initiative remains necessary to support federal institutions in responding to the ongoing needs of Canadians6 with respect to Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA.7

  1. Federal institutions need further support, especially with respect to the following:
    • Active offer;
    • The impact of the Web 2.0 environment on communications with and services to the public; and
    • The use of the official language of choice as language of work.
  2. Federal institutions rely on the OLCE Initiative to support them in implementing the requirements arising from Canadian court decisions affecting the application of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA, such as the Supreme Court of Canada's ruling in the CALDECH case.
  3. The government relies on the expertise of the OLCE Initiative to support strategic and ad hoc decision making related to official languages.

Continued Need

In 1988, the new Official Languages Act contained the requirements with respect to communications with and services to the public (Part IV), language of work (Part V) and the participation of English-speaking and French-speaking Canadians (Part VI). It also defined the responsibilities of the Treasury Board in relation to official languages, which are to provide general direction and coordination of the policies and programs relating to the implementation of Parts IV, V and VI of the Act in federal institutions, as well as the responsibilities of the President of the Treasury Board to table an annual report to Parliament on the status of official languages in federal institutions. Institutions are responsible for compliance with and implementation of the requirements of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA within their institutions.

Canadians' need to work and have access to services in their own official language when and where they need them was captured in the 2007 Canada-wide consultations led by Bernard Lord, former premier of New Brunswick.8 This need was embedded in the Roadmap and in the OLCE Initiative's contribution to the achievement of the Roadmap's immediate result of "reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service." The contribution to that outcome was through federal institutions' compliance with the requirements related to Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA.

The results of the document review, interviews and online questionnaire support the continued need for coordination, monitoring and evaluation of the performance of federal institutions. In particular, 54% of institutions that responded to the online questionnaire indicated that the OLCE Initiative "Mostly/Completely" still meets the federal government's current needs, 17% responded that it "Moderately" meets those needs, and 24% responded "Don't know / Not applicable."

Further, based on the results of the online questionnaire and on the interviews, the CALDECH case illustrates the continued need for the OLCE Initiative to respond to court decisions through advice and through the development of tools.

In addition, the OLCE Initiative continues to support strategic and ad hoc decision making on official languages issues, as in the following examples:

  • It provided guidance on the analysis of potential impacts on official languages during the most recent review of direct program spending; and
  • It supported the Public Service Employee Survey by developing the questions related to official languages, interpreting the data and following up on the recommendations.

The document review showed that the President of the Treasury Board's Annual Reports on Official Languages generally painted a positive picture of the status of implementation. However, the 2010-11 Annual Report on Official Languages indicated that federal institutions need to better monitor compliance with language clauses in third-party agreements and contracts, as well as the use of both official languages in meetings. The Annual Reports of the Commissioner from 2008 to 2012 highlighted challenges faced by federal institutions in the following areas:

  • The provision of equal quality services through verbal active offer;
  • The creation of a workplace conducive to the use of both official languages; and
  • The leadership of federal institutions in promoting linguistic duality.

These results were supported by the document review, the online questionnaire results and the interviews, which indicated a need to examine the impact of the Web 2.0 environment on communications with and provision of services to the public, to ensure compliance with language requirements.

Combined, the results of the document review, interviews, online questionnaire and case studies demonstrated a continued need for the OLCE Initiative.

4.1.2  To what extent is the OLCE Initiative aligned with federal government priorities and the Secretariat's strategic outcome?

The OLCE Initiative was found to be aligned with government and Secretariat priorities.

  1. The federal government identified linguistic duality and the Roadmap among its priorities in the Speech from the Throne, the Budget, and the Annual Report to the Prime Minister on the Public Service of Canada by the Clerk of the Privy Council and Secretary to the Cabinet.
  2. Most federal institutions confirmed the alignment with government priorities.
  3. Certain activities relating to the OLCE Initiative were included in the Secretariat's most recent Report on Plans and Priorities.
Alignment with Government Priorities

Evidence from the document review, the online questionnaire and the interviews demonstrated that the OLCE Initiative is aligned with government priorities.

The Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality 2008–2013: Acting for the Future was announced in the 2007 Speech from the Throne and in Budget 2008. Official languages were also highlighted in the 2010 Speech from the Throne, specifically:

We are a bilingual country. Canada's two official languages are an integral part of our history and position us uniquely in the world. Building on the recognition that the Québécois form a nation within a united Canada, and the Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality, our Government will take steps to strengthen further Canada's Francophone identity.

The 2012 Economic Action Plan states that the Roadmap and linguistic duality in the federal public service form part of the government's priorities:

Canada's two official languages are an integral part of Canadian history and identity.… The Government's five-year "Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality 2008–2013" represents the most comprehensive investment in Canada's official languages in Canada's history. Economic Action Plan 2012 will continue support for official languages by maintaining funding to protect, celebrate and enhance Canada's linguistic duality.

Similarly, the Nineteenth Annual Report to the Prime Minister on the Public Service of Canada by the Clerk of the Privy Council and Secretary to the Cabinet (2012) emphasized the importance of supporting the use of both official languages in the workplace. Specifically:

We must not let up our efforts to nurture workplaces that support the use of both official languages, even as we tackle reductions.… This will result in productive and fulfilling work environments, improve our ability to attract and retain great employees, and enable us to better serve Canadians in both official languages.

The OLCE Initiative's alignment with federal government priorities was also confirmed by federal institutions and interviewees. In particular, 53% of institutions that responded to the online questionnaire indicated that the OLCE Initiative "Mostly/Completely" aligned with the government's current priorities, 17 % responded that it is "Moderately" aligned with those priorities, and 29% responded "Don't know / Not applicable."

Alignment with the Secretariat's Priorities

The Secretariat's 2012–13 Report on Plans and Priorities identified, at a high level, certain OLCE Initiative activities as part of its priorities. Specifically, the report states that the Secretariat will do the following:

Continue to support deputy heads in their accountability for effective people management, including ... reviewing the application of official languages policies; and streamlining the suite of Treasury Board policies....

By assuming its mandate, the OLCE Initiative contributed to the Secretariat's strategic outcome through its people management role. The Secretariat's 2012–13 Report on Plans and Priorities stated the following:

The People Management program activity supports efforts across the federal public service to achieve strong leadership and a well-managed workforce and workplace.… In certain instances, this program activity includes efforts that extend beyond the core public administration to separate employers and Crown corporations.

The report also indicated that the People Management program activity supports enabling infrastructure that is underpinned by legislation, including the Official Languages Act.

In addition to the document review, certain interviewees from the target groups concurred that the OLCE Initiative is aligned with the OCHRO's priorities through its people management role.

4.1.3  Is the mandate of the OLCE Initiative aligned with the roles and responsibilities of the Government of Canada?

The OLCE Initiative's mandate was found to be aligned with the roles and responsibilities of the government.

  1. The OLCE Initiative allows the Treasury Board to assume its responsibilities with respect to implementation of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA. While the OLCE Initiative supports federal institutions in implementing Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA, responsibility for actually implementing and complying with them falls on the institutions.
  2. The OLCE Initiative's mandate is aligned with the Secretariat's strategic outcome, through the "People Management program".
  3. Most institutions confirmed the alignment between the OLCE Initiative and the government's roles and responsibilities.
Roles and Responsibilities of the Government

The 1988 Official Languages Act sets out the responsibilities and the OLCE Initiative is aligned with these.

Under Part VIII of the OLA, the Treasury Board has responsibility for the general direction and coordination of the policies and programs of the Government of Canada relating to the implementation of Parts IV, V and VI in all federal institutions subject to the OLA.

In carrying out those responsibilities, the Treasury Board may do the following:

  • Recommend regulations to the Governor in Council to give effect to Parts IV, V and VI;
  • Issue directives to give effect to Parts IV, V and VI;
  • Monitor and audit federal institutions in respect of which it has responsibility for their compliance with policies, directives and regulations of Treasury Board or the Governor in Council relating to the official languages of Canada; and
  • Evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of policies and programs of federal institutions relating to the official languages of Canada.

In addition, the President of the Treasury Board must submit an annual report to Parliament on the status of programs relating to official languages in institutions subject to the OLA.

As the administrative arm of the Treasury Board, the Secretariat supports the President of the Treasury Board and the Treasury Board in assuming its roles and responsibilities. Within the Secretariat, OCHRO supports deputy heads in exercising their responsibilities in human resources management, including official languages. It is in this context that OCHRO, through the OLCE Initiative, supports the Treasury Board and the President of the Treasury Board in fulfilling their responsibilities under Part VIII of the OLA. Through its mandate, the OLCE Initiative is also expected to contribute to the Secretariat's strategic outcome of "government is well managed and accountable, and resources are allocated to achieve results."

Based on evidence from the online questionnaire and the document review, the OLCE Initiative is aligned with the roles and responsibilities of the government because it acts as an intermediary between the Treasury Board and federal institutions. It supports federal institutions in more effectively implementing Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA, which enables the government to comply with the principles of the Charter and to apply the requirements of the OLA. By carrying out its mandate, the OLCE Initiative contributes to the Secretariat's strategic outcome through the "People Management program" activity.

4.2 Performance (Effectiveness, Efficiency and Economy)

This section presents the evaluation findings regarding the achievement of expected outcomes and the demonstration of efficiency and economy.

Effectiveness: Achievement of Expected Outcomes

The findings presented here relate to the OLCE Initiative's effectiveness in achieving its expected immediate, intermediate and final outcomes.

Achievement of Immediate Outcomes

4.2.1  To what extent has the OLCE Initiative increased the understanding, dialogue, sharing of best practices and knowledge concerning the implementation of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA among the target groups and key stakeholders?

The evaluation results indicate that through its activities and outputs, the OLCE Initiative made progress toward achieving its expected immediate outcomes, particularly for increased understanding of linguistic duties, dialogue and sharing of best practices.

  1. Federal institutions better understand their linguistic duties, and the new policy instruments were aimed at contributing to the achievement of this outcome. Nevertheless, views were mixed regarding the sufficiency of horizontal advice.
  2. The OLCE Initiative contributed to sharing best practices and to increasing dialogue through the official languages advisory committees, the champions' network, best practices forums and Clearspace, a virtual collaboration space.
  3. Notwithstanding the above, evaluation results were mixed regarding the degree of progress made toward achieving the following:
    • Greater knowledge among federal institutions concerning the situation of official languages in federal institutions; and
    • Greater knowledge by the Secretariat, targets groups and key stakeholders concerning OCHRO's official languages files, challenges, priorities and accomplishments.

Based on the document review, the OLCE Initiative conducted all four activities and produced its intended outputs (as depicted in its logic model) in support of achieving its immediate outcomes of increased dialogue, sharing of best practices, better understanding of linguistic duties, and knowledge by the Secretariat.

Better Understanding of the Linguistic Duties of Federal Institutions Under the OLA and its Regulations

The OLCE Initiative undertook a comprehensive consultation process in reviewing the Treasury Board Policy on Official Languages, its instruments and directives. This process streamlined the policy suite from 12 instruments to 49 in order to do the following:

  • Clarify language requirements;
  • Harmonize the language requirements with the new human resources management system; and
  • Simplify official languages policy instruments.

The new policy instruments were designed to provide a better understanding of the linguistic duties of federal institutions. Because these new instruments were only approved in 2012, it was too early to fully assess their contribution to the outcomes.

A number of interviewees specified that the OLCE Initiative contributed to a better understanding of the linguistic duties of federal institutions through the official languages advisory committees, through the champions' network and through horizontal advice and interpretation on matters such as the application of the CALDECH decision. Nevertheless, some interviewees stated that some factors such as the turnover rate among staff responsible for official languages and the resulting loss of corporate memory created some challenges in achieving this outcome.

In addition, 55% of institutions that responded to the online questionnaire indicated that the OLCE Initiative "Mostly/Completely" contributed to a better understanding of the linguistic duties of federal institutions, 23% responded that it contributed "Moderately," and 8% indicated that it contributed "Not at all / Slightly." Further, the 2010–11 Annual Report on Official Languages noted that support from the OLCE Initiative in relation to the CALDECH decision helped institutions better understand the effects of the decision and to develop implementation strategies.

Despite these positive results, interviewees expressed mixed views about the horizontal advice and interpretation provided by the OLCE Initiative. More than half of them indicated that the OLCE Initiative provided support and horizontal advice, but a portion of those outside the Secretariat said that the support would be more effective if it were adapted to the institutions' specific needs.10

Sharing of Best Practices in Official Languages

Results from the document review, the online questionnaire and the interviews showed that progress had been made on sharing best practices. Among institutions that responded to the online questionnaire, 64% indicated that the OLCE Initiative "Mostly/Completely" contributed to a sharing of best practices, 17% responded "Moderately," and 5% responded "Not at all / Slightly."

The 2010–11 Annual Report on Official Languages noted that the official languages advisory committees, champions' network and best practices forums contributed to the sharing of best practices between institutions. In addition, a virtual collaboration space known as "Clearspace" was created so that those responsible for official languages within institutions can share ideas, tools, best practices and experience through a social media platform. Federal institutions responding to the online questionnaire, as well as interviewees, confirmed the progress made regarding this outcome and indicated that the following outputs were the most useful:

  • Clearspace;
  • Discussion forums such as the Network of Official Languages Champions, best practices forums, and the official languages advisory committees; and
  • Tools and publications, such as the analytical grid developed in response to the CALDECH decision and the Treasury Board policy instruments.

In addition, from the document review it was found that the new official languages policy instruments were aimed at facilitating the sharing of best practices to enable federal institutions to review, adapt and improve their official languages activities. Nevertheless, as specified previously, it was too early to fully assess the instruments' contributions to the outcomes to date.

Greater Dialogue with Key Stakeholders and Targets Groups

Results from the document review, the online questionnaire and the interviews showed some progress toward achieving this outcome. Of institutions that responded to the online questionnaire, 41% indicated that the OLCE Initiative "Mostly/Completely" contributed to greater dialogue with key stakeholders and targets groups, 21% responded that it "Moderately" contributed, and 31% responded "Don't know / Not applicable." Only 7% indicated that the OLCE Initiative contributed "Not at all / Slightly" to this outcome.

Evidence from the document review indicated that the OLCE Initiative consulted federal institutions, key stakeholders and target groups during the renewal of the official language policy instruments. In addition, the Annual Reports on Official Languages, as well as interviewees, indicated that the official languages advisory committees and best practices forums enabled federal institutions to achieve greater dialogue on official languages.

Specifically, the 2009–10 Annual Report on Official Languages noted the following:

We saw signs of greater collaboration between departments, for instance through the Crown corporations and departmental organizing group, which, based on the needs of the institutions, seeks to identify the topics for discussion and the presentations at the advisory committee meetings. Champions play an increasingly active role as ambassadors of linguistic duality in their institutions.

Further evidence from the document review indicated that the OLCE Initiative and Canadian Heritage collaborated to simplify reporting on Parts IV, V, VI and VII. In 2011–12, the OLCE Initiative implemented a new reporting approach11 under which the Secretariat and Canadian Heritage sent federal institutions a single, joint request to submit their official languages reports to the two departments separately, based on specific roles and responsibilities under the OLA.

Greater Knowledge by the Secretariat and Federal Institutions Concerning the Official Languages Situation in Federal Institutions

The results were mixed on the degree of progress made toward achieving greater knowledge by the Secretariat and federal institutions concerning the official languages situation in federal institutions.

The OLCE Initiative contributed to the achievement of this outcome through the performance assessments of federal institutions under the Management Accountability Framework, as well as through the Treasury Board President's annual report to Parliament on the status of official languages in institutions subject to the OLA. That report is based on the following data information systems:

  • Burolis;12
  • The Position and Classification Information System (PCIS); and
  • The Official Languages Information System II (OLIS II).

Respondents to the online questionnaire expressed mixed views: 29% indicated that the reporting approach used for the annual report "Mostly/Completely" informed federal institutions, 27% indicated "Moderately" did so, 21% indicated "Not at all / Slightly," and 23% indicated "Don't know / Not applicable." Respondents were fairly evenly split on the extent to which they felt informed by the reporting approach.

In this regard, questionnaire respondents and some interviewees expressed notable concern about the three-year reporting approach that has been in place since 2008–09. They indicated that the new approach did not provide a complete picture of the official languages situation, that results were not verified, and that they were difficult to compare year over year. Moreover, some respondents stated that annual feedback on the progress of federal institutions would better enable them to focus on certain issues in the following year. They indicated a need for the OLCE Initiative to provide more rigorous feedback on and verification of the performance reported by institutions.

In addition, the Standing Senate Committee on Official Languages and the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages expressed concern about the reporting of information. For example, in the Fourth Report: The Vitality of Quebec's English-Speaking Communities: From Myth to Reality (), the Standing Senate Committee noted that data in the President of the Treasury Board's 2008–09 Annual Report on Official Languages were incomplete and were not comparable over the time period since the three-year cycle was implemented. Specifically, in 2007–08, data by region were removed from the annual report in keeping with a streamlined approach to reporting. Regional data, however, could still be calculated using provincial data from the report. Information on Part VI continues to be collected from all institutions and reported as such in annual reports.

Greater Knowledge by the Secretariat, Targets Groups and Key Stakeholders Concerning OCHRO's Official Languages Files, Challenges, Priorities and Accomplishments

Results were mixed on the degree of progress made toward achieving greater knowledge by the Secretariat, targets groups and key stakeholders concerning OCHRO's official languages files, challenges, priorities and accomplishments. Although certain respondents from the target groups interviewed said that progress has been made in this regard, key stakeholders interviewed said that they were not aware of progress made towards the achievement of this outcome.

Suggestions for Improvement

Federal institutions that responded to the online questionnaire, as well as interviewees, were asked for suggestions for improvements to the OLCE Initiative. The evaluation did not assess the feasibility or appropriateness of these suggestions. The suggestions provided are as follows:

  • Develop more varied tools to improve use of the language of choice at work, in particular, in relation to holding bilingual meetings;
  • Provide more individual advice and interpretation to institutions, or to certain categories of institutions, that have specific needs in order to strike a balance between customized support and the horizontal role;
  • Make greater use of Web 2.0, such as through GCpedia, GCForums and social networks, and make greater use of Clearspace, which to date has been implemented as a pilot project;
  • Meet more frequently with the Network of Official Languages Champions and the official languages advisory committees, as well as with the key stakeholders and interested parties, to discuss emerging issues and the OLCE Initiative's achievements;
  • Assess institutions' performance based on an annual cycle rather than a three-year cycle, and take into account other official languages data, such as those from the Annual Report of the Commissioner of Official Languages, studies by the parliamentary standing committees on official languages, and the Public Service Employee Survey; and
  • Provide feedback to institutions on their performance based on the annual report data, and verify the data provided in the annual reports.

Achievement of Intermediate Outcomes

4.2.2  To what extent has the OLCE Initiative achieved its intermediate and final outcomes, as well as the Roadmap immediate result?

Although it is too early to fully assess the extent to which the OLCE Initiative had achieved its intermediate and final outcomes, the evidence indicated that some progress had been made, particularly toward achieving the intermediate outcomes.

  1. More progress was made toward achieving the first two intermediate outcomes—greater commitment by federal institutions to ensuring linguistic duality in the federal public service and greater ability of federal institutions to comply with the OLA and its Regulations. There was less evidence, however, of progress on the Secretariat's ability to support the Treasury Board and the President in exercising their roles.
  2. Despite certain concerns raised about the service delivery model, nearly half of federal institutions believed that the OLCE Initiative was an effective mechanism for achieving the intermediate and final outcomes.
  3. The official languages champions and the Commissioner of Official Languages expressed concern about how the reorganization of the OLCE Initiative will affect federal institutions' ability to comply with Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA.
  4. Because the enabler model adopted by the Secretariat represents a major transformation for the OLCE Initiative, more evidence of the achievement of the intended intermediate and final outcomes will need to be collected over the next several years. Notwithstanding this, there is evidence that the OLCE Initiative is making a contribution to the final intended outcome.

The evaluation found that it was still too early to fully assess the extent to which the OLCE Initiative had achieved its intermediate and final outcomes. The evaluation found that more progress had been made toward achieving the first two intermediate outcomes:

  • Greater commitment by federal institutions to ensuring linguistic duality in the federal public service; and
  • Greater ability of federal institutions to comply with the OLA and its Regulations.

There was less evidence to demonstrate progress on the Secretariat's ability to support the Treasury Board and the President in exercising their roles.

In relation to the first intermediate outcome, 38% of federal institutions that responded to the online questionnaire indicated that the OLCE Initiative "Mostly/Completely" enhanced the commitment of federal institutions to ensuring linguistic duality in the federal public service, 24% indicated "Moderately," and 28% indicated "Don't know / Not applicable."

In relation to the second intermediate outcome, 44% of federal institutions that responded to the questionnaire indicated that the OLCE Initiative "Mostly/Completely" enhanced the institutions' ability to comply with their obligations under Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA, 26% indicated "Moderately," and 22% indicated "Don't know / Not applicable."

According to the 2009–10 Annual Report on Official Languages, the sharing of best practices increased institutions' commitment and enhanced their capacity to comply with Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA. In addition, in his annual report for 2010–11, the Commissioner of Official Languages wrote as follows:

Although it is difficult to determine how well institutions are able to take [the DesRochers decision] into account, the Office of the Commissioner finds it encouraging that most of the federal institutions it evaluated this year are casting a critical eye on their services and programs and giving serious thought as to how to provide services of equal quality in both official languages.

Nevertheless, in his annual report for 2009–10, the Commissioner indicated that, because of changes made in 2009, official languages champions are concerned about the loss of overall official languages expertise and the impact that loss could have on institutions' ability to comply with Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA:

Based on the way the federal government is currently implementing these changes, it does not seem concerned about the fact that federal institutions will have to develop their own official languages expertise, which could take years.

There was some support from interviewees that the OLCE Initiative is an effective mechanism, despite the concerns expressed by a number of institutions regarding the service delivery approach. The online questionnaire results revealed that nearly half of federal institutions believed that the OLCE Initiative was an effective mechanism for achieving the intermediate outcomes.

In this regard, 44% of federal institutions indicated that the OLCE Initiative is "Mostly/Completely" an effective mechanism to enable federal institutions to be more committed to ensuring linguistic duality in the federal public service, 24% indicated "Moderately," and 20% indicated "Don't know / Not applicable." In addition, 47% of federal institutions indicated that the OLCE Initiative is "Mostly/Completely" an effective mechanism to increase institutions' ability to comply with their obligations under Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA, 26% indicated "Moderately," and 16% indicated "Don't know / Not applicable." The results appear to indicate a lack of information or certainty among a large proportion of respondents on the extent to which the OLCE Initiative contributed to these intermediate outcomes.

Results from the interviews within the Secretariat revealed some progress on the outcome of "The Secretariat is better able to support the President and the Treasury Board in exercising their role." These interviewees stated that the implementation of the Secretariat's enabling role reduced the number of times that the Secretariat had to intervene with institutions. This new approach was based on all institutions affirming their own leadership in Official Languages rather than waiting for directives from the OLCE before taking action.

Contribution Toward Final Outcome

As mentioned earlier in this report, the immediate outcomes were a direct result of the OLCE Initiative activities, and they indicated a measurable change. In general, the final outcome refers to changes in individual or group behaviour or in community conditions that the OLCE Initiative hopes to achieve over time. Although immediate outcomes are expected to contribute to the achievement of intermediate and final outcomes, other factors and forces also influence achievement of these outcomes. For example, the 2008–09 Annual Report on Official Languages tabled by the President of the Treasury Board notes that the implementation of Parts IV, V and VI depends on the commitment and leadership of federal institutions.

Given that the enabler model adopted by the Secretariat represents a major transformation for the OLCE Initiative, further evidence concerning the achievement of the final outcome will need to be collected over the next several years. The evaluation did, however, find some evidence of progress toward the final outcome of the OLCE Initiative. Results from the online questionnaire showed that 44% of respondents believed that the OLCE Initiative "Mostly/Completely" enabled better application of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA in federal institutions. In addition, 47% believed the OLCE Initiative is "Mostly/Completely" an effective mechanism for facilitating better application of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA in federal institutions.

The 2009–10 Commissioner of Official Languages Annual Report indicated that the reorganization of the OLCE Initiative could have a negative impact on federal institutions' performance in applying Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA and its Regulations in their institutions. However, the Commissioner's Annual Report for 2009–10 stated that it is still too early to determine the final impact of this change on linguistic duality. The Commissioner did not revisit this issue in the following two annual reports.

OLCE Initiative and its Contribution Toward "Reinforced Linguistic Duality in the Federal Public Service"

As stated above, although it is too early to conclude fully on its contribution, some evidence indicates that the OLCE Initiative is contributing to better application of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA and its Regulations by federal institutions. Compliance with these sections of the OLA and its Regulations is intrinsically linked to the concept of reinforced linguistic duality in the public service. It is therefore reasonable to expect that the OLCE Initiative is contributing to the Roadmap's immediate result. Similarly, the link between compliance with the OLA and its Regulations and the Secretariat's strategic outcome of "government is well managed and accountable, and resources are allocated to achieve results" is sound from a program logic perspective. It is therefore reasonable to expect that the OLCE Initiative is contributing to this outcome.

Contribution of the OLCE Initiative's governance structure, service delivery and accountability model to its outcomes

4.2.3  To what extent are the governance structure, service delivery model and accountability model appropriate to achieve the OLCE Initiative outcomes?

Overall, the OLCE Initiative's governance, service delivery and accountability models were found to be appropriate to contribute effectively to the achievement of its outcomes which, in turn, contribute to the immediate result of the Roadmap.

  1. The placement of the OLCE Initiative within the Secretariat was appropriate given the Secretariat's role. However, a number of interviewees and institutions expressed concern about the visibility and effectiveness of the OLCE Initiative because of its placement within the Secretariat. They questioned whether it would be able to influence those organizations for which Treasury Board is not the employer.
  2. Institutions and interviewees had mixed views regarding the appropriateness of service delivery model. Although some respondents from the target groups indicated that the enabling role complemented the roles of institutions, other interviewees indicated that the OLCE Initiative could fulfill its role more effectively by taking an approach that balances horizontal and customized support.
  3. The accountability model aligns with that proposed by the Roadmap. Nevertheless, the OLCE Initiative did not develop an updated performance measurement strategy linked to the new logic model.

The Secretariat put in place a governance structure and a service delivery model that make it possible to carry out the activities aimed at contributing to the Roadmap's immediate result of "reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service."

Governance Structure

The OLCE Initiative's governance structure is outlined in Figure 1. The evaluation found that the placement of the OLCE Initiative within the Secretariat was an appropriate governance model, given the Secretariat's role.

Specifically, the Financial Administration Act (FAA) states that the Treasury Board may act on all matters relating to general administrative policy in federal public administration. Subsection 6 (4.1) of the FAA outlines the Chief Human Resources Officer's role as follows:

The Treasury Board may, subject to any terms and conditions that it considers appropriate, delegate to the Chief Human Resources Officer

(a) any of the powers or functions in relation to human resources management, official languages, employment equity, and values and ethics that it is authorized to exercise under any Act of Parliament or by any order made by the Governor in Council….

Given the Treasury Board's responsibilities, it is well positioned to contribute to the Roadmap's immediate result of "reinforced linguistic duality in the public service within its responsibilities."

In spite of those positive findings, almost half of interviewees, mainly key stakeholders and interested parties, raised questions about the OLCE Initiative's placement within OCHRO. They felt that, given OCHRO's human resources mandate, the positioning of the OLCE Initiative within OCHRO could reduce the Initiative's visibility and effectiveness. Some of these respondents commented on the challenge that the Secretariat faces in influencing those organizations for which the Treasury Board is not the employer but that are nevertheless subject to the OLA. Specifically, OCHRO is responsible for those organizations for which Treasury Board is the employer (close to 80 federal institutions) under the FAA. However, OCHRO targets almost 200 federal institutions in terms of the general development and coordination of federal policies and programs for implementation of Parts IV, V and VI.

Both the online questionnaire and the interviews included questions about the effectiveness of the governance structure in terms of achieving intended outcomes. A number of respondents from the target groups indicated that the governance structure was effective in achieving the expected results, despite concerns raised by interviewees regarding its placement. In addition, based on results from the online questionnaire, a significant proportion of federal institutions indicated that the governance structure was "Mostly/Completely" or "Moderately" effective in achieving intermediate and final outcomes, and those stating "Not at all / Slightly" ranged between 8% and 14%. Nevertheless, as shown in Figure 3, a significant number of respondents could not answer questions in this regard, which may indicate either a lack of understanding of the OLCE Initiative's governance structure or of its link to intended outcomes.

Figure 3: Institutions' Perception of the Effectiveness of the OLCE Initiative's Current Governance Structure to Achieve Intermediate and Final Outcomes
Institutions' Perception of the Effectiveness of the OLCE Initiative's Current Governance Structure to Achieve Intermediate and Final Outcomes. Text version below:
Figure 3 - Text version

This bar diagram illustrates data from the on-line questionnaire administered to federal institutions subject to the Official Languages Act.

Three vertical bars are illustrated in the diagram and show the results of the following question: "To what extent is the existing governance structure of the Official Languages Centre of Excellence Initiative effective in achieving the medium to long-term results?".

The first vertical bar shows the results to the following intermediate outcome: "Federal institutions better able to comply with Parts IV, V and VI of the Official Languages Act and its Regulations". The results from the on-line questionnaire are presented as follow: "28% of federal institutions responded to the on-line questionnaire indicated "Don't know" or "Not applicable"; 11% of federal institutions indicated "Not at all" or "Slightly"; 21% of federal institutions indicated "moderately"; and 40% of federal institutions indicated "mostly" or "completely".

The second vertical bar shows the results to the following intermediate outcome: "Federal institutions more committed to ensuring linguistic duality in the federal public service". The results from the on-line questionnaire are presented as follow: "25% of federal institutions responded to the on-line questionnaire indicated "Don't know" or "Not applicable"; 14% of federal institutions indicated "Not at all" or "Slightly"; 24% of federal institutions indicated "moderately"; and 37% of federal institutions indicated "mostly" or "completely".

The third vertical bar shows the results to the following long-term outcome: "Better application of Parts IV, V and VI of the Official Languages Act and its Regulations within federal institutions". The results from the on-line questionnaire are presented as follow: "33% of federal institutions responded to the on-line questionnaire indicated "Don't know" or "Not applicable"; 8% of federal institutions indicated "Not at all" or "Slightly"; 21% of federal institutions indicated "moderately"; and 38% of federal institutions indicated "mostly" or "completely".

Service Delivery Model

As described earlier, before 2009, the initial service delivery approach was based on customized services provided by portfolio managers who were each responsible for a certain number of institutions subject to the OLA. Under this model, the OLCE Initiative provided recommendations, suggested corrective actions, and on request provided information to partners, the public and parliamentarians.

Following the CPSA's reorganization to become OCHRO in 2009, the service delivery model began to evolve into its current enabler role. The original 2008 logic model was updated in 2011 to reflect this. This shift from a customized to a horizontal approach was intended to align with the Secretariat's transition to an enabling approach that supports deputy head accountability.

Based on the online questionnaire, federal institutions had mixed views regarding the appropriateness of the current service delivery model in terms of supporting their implementation of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA. The results showed that 39% of respondents indicated that the model was "Mostly/Completely" appropriate, 24% indicated "Moderately," almost 25% indicated "Not at all / Slightly" appropriate, and 14% were not in a position to respond to the question (i.e., indicated "Don't know / Not applicable").

These results were consistent with those obtained from the interviews. Some respondents from the target groups viewed the enabling role as complementary to those of institutions, providing an impetus for change and taking advantage of the experience, knowledge, resources and expertise of federal institutions subject to the OLA to benefit the whole of government. Others expressed concern that implementation of Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA would be negatively affected in the absence of customized services (interpretations, advice, etc.) given the perceived limitations in official languages expertise and resources in certain federal institutions. Some respondents also commented that shortcomings need to be addressed in terms of providing guidance, monitoring, audit and evaluation of performance, especially the ability to verify federal institutions' performance in the implementation of Parts IV, V and VI. As well, some interviewees indicated that the OLCE Initiative would fulfill its role more effectively by adopting an approach that balances horizontal and customized support.

Accountability Model

The evaluation found that the OLCE Initiative accountability model is aligned with that proposed by the Roadmap. Based on the document review, the OLCE Initiative reported its achievement through various mechanisms:

  • The 2012–13 Reports on Plans and Priorities of the Secretariat and Canadian Heritage;
  • The Departmental Performance Reports of the Secretariat and Canadian Heritage, in keeping with the expectations of the Roadmap; and
  • The Annual Report on Official Languages issued by the President of the Treasury Board and tabled in Parliament pursuant to section 48 of the OLA.

It was found that, under the OLA, the Annual Reports on Official Languages were reviewed by the Commissioner of Official Languages, as well as by the standing committees on official languages of the House of Commons and the Senate. Under subsection 56(1) of the OLA, the Commissioner of Official Languages ensures recognition of the status of each of the official languages and compliance with the spirit and intent of the OLA in federal institutions. The two parliamentary standing committees on official languages, pursuant to section 88 of the OLA,13 review implementation of the OLA, regulations and directives and the President of the Treasury Board's Annual Reports on Official Languages.

The OLCE Initiative results (since 2008) were also reported in the mid-term report on the Roadmap (issued in 2012), which was tabled in Parliament by Canadian Heritage.

In addition, the OLCE Initiative reported its results through the Roadmap's performance measurement strategy, which was linked to the activity and outputs of the 2008 logic model. An updated performance measurement strategy, including performance objectives, targets and indicators linked to the new logic model and its expected outcomes had not been developed at the time of the evaluation. Such documents would have strengthened accountability by enhancing the link between specific activities and results achieved and would enable regular comparisons between targeted and actual results.

Demonstration of Efficiency and Economy

The evaluation assessed the OLCE Initiative's performance by examining the level of efficiency and economy in the use of resources to produce outputs and achieve expected outcomes.

4.2.4  To what extent did the OLCE Initiative's resources contribute to the production of expected outputs and outcomes?

The evaluation found that:

  1. The OLCE Initiative used all of its resources to produce the expected outputs, which supported the achievement of expected outcomes.
  2. Data limitations prevented a full examination of efficiency and economy; however, most federal institutions and interviewees indicated that if resources were reduced, the OLCE Initiative would be unable to achieve its expected outcomes.
  3. Almost half of federal institutions believed that better results could be achieved with the same resources, and offered suggestions for consideration.
  4. In 2011, a dedicated fund centre was created for the OLCE Initiative to better plan and monitor expenses incurred.
Planned and Actual Expenditures of the OLCE Initiative

In 2008, the Roadmap set out a Government of Canada commitment of $17 million over five years for the OLCE Initiative or $3.4 million annually. These funds were for activities that would contribute to the Roadmap's immediate result of "reinforced linguistic duality in the federal public service."

As per the Roadmap, a logic model was developed for the OLCE Initiative that tied funding and activities to expected results. The funds were allocated as follows over five years:

  • Monitoring: $4.5 million;
  • Policy instrument development: $5.8 million;
  • Support and advice: $4.5 million; and
  • Information sharing: $2.2 million.

Based on the documentation review, the funds allocated for the implementation of the OLCE Initiative are part of the Secretariat's ongoing reference levels, even though the government's specific commitments under the Roadmap are limited to a five-year period.

Although OLCE Initiative expenditures were broken down by activity in the 2008 logic model (as per the Roadmap), this was not done for the logic model updated in 2011. Table 1 shows the evolution in spending based on the Roadmap commitments.

Table 1: Breakdown of OLCE Initiative Expenditures Since 2008
Categories 2008–09 2009–10 2010–11 2011–12 2012–13
Voted credits $3,400,000 $3,400,000 $3,400,000 $3,400,000 $3,400,000
Funds spent from the Roadmap budget $3,354,783 $2,769,094 $3,273,475 $3,776,491 $3,638,939
Variance $45,217 $630,906 $126,525 ($376,491) ($238,939)

As shown in Table 1, the OLCE Initiative spent most of the planned funds according to the government's commitments to the Roadmap. Specifically, between 2008–09 and 2012–13, $16,812,782 was spent versus $17,000,000 planned, representing a variance of less than 1%.

In 2011, the Secretariat created a cost centre exclusively for the OLCE Initiative to more accurately record its financial data and to enhance accountability.

The number of employees dedicated to the OLCE Initiative declined significantly between 2008 and 2012 as a result of the reorganization of the CPSA. Specifically, the OLCE Initiative had 35 employees in 2008–09; that number fell to 23 in 2012–13.

Use of Resources to Produce Expected Outputs and Outcomes

As mentioned earlier in this report, the evaluation was conducted in the absence of a performance measurement strategy linked to the updated logic model and its components. The use of resources to produce outputs and their impact on the immediate outcomes was assessed using the financial information provided by the OLCE Initiative and data collected from the online questionnaire and interviews.

The responses to the interviews and the online questionnaire indicate that institutions and interviewees generally believed that if the resources invested in the OLCE Initiative were reduced, the OLCE Initiative would not be able to achieve its expected outcomes. Results from the online questionnaire showed that 71% of federal institutions held this view, and 52% of institutions indicated that the OLCE Initiative could not produce better products to achieve better results with the same resources. In addition, some interviewees stated that, given the level of funding allocated to the OLCE Initiative, implementing its activities required that more emphasis be placed on some activities and less be placed on others.

In spite of the positive results, almost half of federal institutions that responded to the online questionnaire or were interviewed believed that better results could be achieved with the same resources. The following suggestions were offered for improvement:

  • Use Web 2.0 for online training and seminars;
  • Develop practical tools to support federal institutions and to hold them more accountable for implementing Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA; and
  • Foster more collaboration and networking between federal institutions through more frequent meetings with the official languages advisory committees.

The evaluation did not assess the extent to which the above mentioned suggestions would be feasible or appropriate.

5. Conclusions and Recommendations

5.1 Relevance

Continued Need for the OLCE Initiative

The evaluation concludes that an ongoing need exists for the OLCE Initiative to support federal institutions in responding to the ongoing needs of Canadians with respect to Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA, as well as to support the President of the Treasury Board and Treasury Board in carrying out their responsibilities and duties under the OLA.

In addition, the evaluation identified an ongoing need for the OLCE Initiative to provide continued support in four key areas:

  • Ensuring the availability of communications with and the delivery of services to the public in both official languages;
  • Ensuring a workplace conducive to the use of both official languages and the availability of work tools in both official languages for government employees;
  • Implementing requirements arising from Canadian court rulings, such as the ruling of the Supreme Court of Canada in the CALDECH case; and
  • Participating in strategic and ad hoc decision making related to official languages.

Alignment with Government and Departmental Priorities

The evaluation concludes that the OLCE Initiative is consistent with current federal government and departmental priorities. The federal government identified linguistic duality and the Roadmap among its priorities for example, in Canada's Economic Action Plan 2012. In addition, certain OLCE Initiative activities were included in the Secretariat's most recent Report on Plans and Priorities.

Consistency with Federal Roles and Responsibilities

The OLCE Initiative is aligned with the government's roles and responsibilities, in that it supports the President of the Treasury Board and the Treasury Board in addressing the requirements of Part VIII of the OLA by providing general direction and coordination of policies and programs relating to the implementation of Parts IV, V and VI.

The OLCE Initiative is relevant because it addresses a continued need, is aligned with Secretariat and government priorities, and is mandated by legislation as a federal responsibility.

5.2 Performance (Effectiveness, Efficiency and Economy)

Achievement of Outcomes

The evaluation evidence indicates that progress is being made toward achieving expected immediate outcomes. Despite the reorganizations and transformations since 2008, the OLCE Initiative has demonstrated some progress toward improved understanding of linguistic duties, the sharing of best practices and increased dialogue. Nevertheless, results were mixed on the degree of progress made toward achieving greater knowledge among federal institutions regarding the situation of official languages in the public service and by the Secretariat, targets groups and key stakeholders concerning OCHRO's official languages files.

Although some evidence indicates progress toward achieving intermediate and final outcomes, the evaluation concludes that it is still too early to fully assess the extent of the OLCE Initiative's contribution in this regard, given the nature and magnitude of the changes made to its service delivery model.

With respect to intermediate outcomes, the evidence indicates that the OLCE Initiative has contributed to federal institutions' commitment to linguistic duality and their ability to comply with Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA. However, the Commissioner of Official Languages raised some concerns regarding the impacts on the ability of institutions to comply with the OLA following the change made in the OLCE structure, activities and delivery approach.

It is recognized that a number of factors and forces contribute to the intended final OLCE Initiative outcome of "better application of Parts IV, V, and VI and its Regulations within federal institutions." The evaluation found evidence that the OLCE Initiative is making progress on this outcome. By extension, it is reasonable to expect that the OLCE Initiative is also contributing to the Roadmap's immediate outcome of "reinforced Linguistic Duality," given its link to compliance with the OLA.

A future evaluation when the OLCE Initiative is at a more mature state, supported by a rigorous performance measurement strategy linked to its logic model and expected outcomes, would be better positioned to assess intermediate and final outcomes. Such outcomes would ideally be articulated in a formal strategic plan for the OLCE Initiative that would also include specific short-, medium- and long-term actions and priorities.

Because certain activities, outputs and outcomes are internal to the Secretariat, especially those related to parliamentary and strategic activities and to their achievement, there may be opportunities to refine the logic model and to increase stakeholders' understanding of results relevant to federal institutions.

Recommendation 1

Develop and communicate a formal strategic plan for the OLCE Initiative.

Recommendation 2

Review the existing logic model to ensure that it continues to reflect key activities and outputs and that these are clearly linked to expected outcomes.

Recommendation 3

Develop a performance measurement strategy that aligns with the logic model and communicate it to federal institutions and key stakeholders.

Contribution of the OLCE Initiative's Governance Structure, Service Delivery and Accountability Model to its Outcomes

Overall, institutions and a number of respondents from the target groups participating in the evaluation indicated that the current governance structure supports the achievement of the OLCE Initiative's outcomes. In particular, the OLCE Initiative is appropriately positioned in the Secretariat, given the Secretariat's mandate.

A number of interviewees and institutions, however, raised questions about the placement of the OLCE Initiative within OCHRO. They were concerned about the OLCE Initiative's potential limited visibility and ability to influence institutions that do not fall within OCHRO's human resources responsibilities. The evaluation concludes that these results, at minimum, have implications for the Secretariat in terms of its engagement with federal institutions.

The evaluation revealed mixed views on the appropriateness of the enabler model adopted in 2009, specifically with respect to the level of support provided to federal institutions. A number of federal institutions and respondents from the target groups indicated that the new model complements their existing roles. Other interviewees, however, said that they faced challenges such as a need for further support, guidance and tools in light of perceived limitations in expertise and resources in certain institutions. The basis of these views warrants further exploration to better understand the concerns that institutions have about the OLCE Initiative's current service delivery model.

The evaluation concludes that the OLCE Initiative accountability model is aligned with that proposed by the Roadmap and with the Secretariat's enabler role. However, institutions and interviewees had mixed views on the three-year cycle of self-assessment reporting, particularly on the frequency and level of feedback provided to them in relation to Parts IV, V and VI of the OLA.

Because the enabler model represented a major transformation in terms of accountability and service delivery, it was reasonable to expect that outcomes would not fully materialize for several years. There is therefore an opportunity for the Secretariat to reflect on these early results and to refine its implementation strategy and engagement approach if necessary.

Recommendation 4

Develop and implement an engagement approach that would do the following:

  • Clarify current and emerging challenges faced by federal institutions; and
  • Enhance federal institutions' understanding of the OLCE Initiative's mandate, structure, delivery approaches, products and services.

Demonstration of Efficiency and Economy

The evaluation concludes that the OLCE Initiative used all of its resources to implement the OLCE Initiative and to support the Treasury Board and federal institutions in meeting their obligations under the OLA. The results suggest that the OLCE Initiative could not have achieved the same results with fewer resources; however, federal institutions had mixed views as to whether the OLCE Initiative could achieve better results with the same resources.

Because resources were not broken down by activity in the logic model, specific outputs and outcomes could not be attributed to budget items in the OLCE Initiative. The Secretariat has since created a fund centre exclusively for the OLCE Initiative in 2011 to better plan and monitor expenses incurred. The evaluation concludes that improving the tracking and reporting of the OLCE Initiative will enable it to better inform and support the Secretariat regarding the value for money and cost-effectiveness of the OLCE Initiative.

Recommendation 5

Examine opportunities for improving the tracking and reporting of OLCE Initiative expenditures that correspond to the components outlined in the logic model.

6. Management Response and Action Plan

Program management has reviewed the evaluation and agrees with the recommendations of the report.

Management Response and Action Plan
Recommendations Proposed Action Start Date Completion Date Office of Primary Interest
Recommendation 1
Develop and communicate a formal strategic plan for the OLCE Initiative.
The OLCE agrees with the recommendation.
A strategic plan will be developed, and once approved it will be shared with the official languages community in federal institutions.
ADM, Governance, Planning and Policy (GPP)
Recommendation 2
Review the existing logic model to ensure that it continues to reflect key activities and outputs and that these are clearly linked to expected outcomes. 
The OLCE agrees with the recommendation.
The logic model will be reviewed and will be aligned with the objectives of the federal official languages strategy for 2013–2018.
GPP ADM
Recommendation 3
Develop a performance measurement strategy that aligns with the logic model, and communicate it to federal institutions and key stakeholders.
The OLCE agrees with the recommendation.
The OLCE had a performance measurement strategy for the 2008–2013 Roadmap aligned with Canadian Heritage. Since the logic model is to be reviewed, a new performance measurement strategy that will measure the results of the OLCE Initiative will be developed. It will be shared with the official languages community within federal institutions.
GPP ADM
Recommendation 4
Develop and implement an engagement approach that would do the following:
  • Clarify current and emerging challenges faced by federal institutions; and
  • Enhance federal institutions' understanding of the OLCE Initiative's mandate, structure, delivery approaches, products and services.
The OLCE agrees with the recommendation.
It will develop an engagement approach aimed at clarifying the existing and emerging challenges faced by federal institutions and at better informing its official languages community partners in federal institutions of emerging issues for the OLCE and the Official Languages Program. It will also work with its partners to clarify these challenges and enhance their understanding of the OLCE's mandate and structure, delivery approaches and the products and services made available to institutions.
GPP ADM
Recommendation 5
Examine opportunities for improving the tracking and reporting of OLCE Initiative expenditures that correspond to the components outlined in the logic model.
The OLCE agrees with the recommendation.
The OLCE will determine how it can better report its expenditures in relation to the activities of its new logic model in an effective and efficient manner.
GPP ADM
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