Technical Amendments to the Qualification Standards


To: Heads of Human Resources

The Qualification Standards, which are established pursuant to section 31 of the Public Service Employment Act, set out the mandatory minimum requirements for appointment and deployment to positions in the public service. They apply to departments and organizations named in Schedules I and IV to the Financial Administration Act.

Consultations conducted with a cross-section of stakeholders over the past year pointed to the need for a series of changes to make the Qualification Standards more user-friendly, easier to understand and to apply, and to ensure that Canada continues to benefit from a highly competent public service.  I am therefore pleased to inform you that the President of the Treasury Board has approved a number of technical amendments to the Qualification Standards, which take effect on .  This information bulletin provides a general overview about the technical amendments and highlights about the key changes.


These amendments are primarily administrative in nature. Changes include modernized definitions and terminology, restructured content, updated professional designations, correction of errors and removal of obsolete information.

It is important to note that the changes do not affect the substantive intent of any standard. Education and occupational certification requirements have not changed, except where professional designations have been updated to reflect current licensing or accreditation terminology or where obsolete information has been removed.

The Qualification Standards have been reorganized to facilitate the search of information. Where possible, duplication of information has been removed.

Selection processes which were started prior to the effective date of the amended Qualification Standards will be subject to the Qualification Standards in effect prior to .


Modernized definitions and terminology:

  • Consistent terminology has been used throughout.
  • The term "university" has been replaced by the term "recognized post-secondary institution" to ensure that degrees granted from all authorized institutions are given due consideration.
  • Definitions critical to the Qualification Standards (e.g. degree, recognized post-secondary institution, acceptable, specialization, etc.) have been included in the Definitions section.

Restructured content:

  • All information applicable to each classification or group, including acquired rights, employer-approved alternatives and specializations has been consolidated under each applicable occupational group or classification.
  • The Qualification Standards have been reorganized in alphabetical order according to the occupational groups and classifications.

Updated professional designations:

  • Updated professional designations have been added (e.g. inclusion of Certified Professional Accountant (CPA) for FI and AU Groups).
  • Obsolete professional designations have been removed (such as the Registered Industrial Accountant (RIA) designation).

Correction of errors and removal of obsolete information:

  • Frequently asked questions have been updated and streamlined.
  • Certain obsolete training requirements have been removed.

Next steps

We have already begun the second phase of work on the Qualification Standards.  This includes, for example, reviewing the education requirements for specific occupational groups and classifications.  We will continue to consult with departments, agencies and bargaining agent representatives as this work unfolds.

Communication Strategy

The Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer will inform the bargaining agents about the updated Qualification Standards. A note will be added to the web site regarding the new effective date and to provide information on transition measures.

Questions about these changes or the ongoing review of the Qualification Standards should be directed to your Departmental Corporate Staffing Official who, if required, will direct their questions to the Qualification Standards team at Contact Interpretations by E-mail:

Manon Brassard
Assistant Deputy Minister
Compensation and Labour Relations
Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat

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