Reminder - Active Offer of Services in Both Official Languages

The public is entitled to receive services in both official languages in designated bilingual offices. In these offices, you have the obligation to actively offer your services. Your professionalism in this area will be appreciated by your clientele and the benefits will be yours to reap.

On the Telephone

Greeting

  • Always answer in both official languages.
  • Depending on the province, use the official language of the majority first and that of the official language minority second.
  • Continue the conversation in the official language chosen by your client and use the corresponding documentation.

Transfer of Calls

  • Keep a list of bilingual employees close at hand.
  • Inform your client that you are referring him/her to someone else.
  • Give the client the name and the phone number of this person and tell the client this person is bilingual.
  • Inform your colleague of the language used by your client

Feedback

  • At the end of a prolonged exchange, summarize the points discussed.
  • Ask for comments on the quality of services.
  • Leave the door open to other questions.

A list of often used expressions on the telephone is also available.

Person

Greeting – Verbal Aspect

  • Always greet your client in both official languages.
  • Depending on the province, use the official language of the majority first and that of the official language minority second.
  • Continue the conversation in the official language chosen by your client and use the corresponding documentation.

Greeting – Visual Aspect

  • Make sure the official languages symbol is clearly visible to the public and that it properly directs them to where they can be served in both official languages.
  • Make sure documentation is displayed in both English and French.
  • Ask your clients from time to time if the signs and posters in your office properly reflects its bilingual nature.
  • Inform your supervisor of your clients' views and tell him/her what is lacking or what could be improved in the visual aspect of your office to make both language groups feel more welcome.

Referral to Another Employee

  • Keep a list of bilingual employees close at hand.
  • Inform your client that you are going to ask someone else to see him/her.
  • Give your client the name of this person and, if necessary, the phone number.
  • Tell the client this person is bilingual.
  • Inform your colleague of the language of the client.

Feedback

  • Assess the meeting.
  • Make sure all questions have been dealt with to the satisfaction of the client.
  • Ask for comments on the quality of services.
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