Archived – Evaluation of Fleet Operational Readiness

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Project Number 6B108
Final Report
September 22, 2009

Table of Contents

List of Acronyms
1.0 Executive Summary
1.1 Introduction
1.2 Objectives ad Scope
1.3 Summary of Observations and Recommendations
1.3.1 Relevance
1.3.2 Performance
1.3.2.1 Efficiency
1.3.2.2 Effectiveness
1.3.2.3 Economy
1.4 Recommendations
2.0 Introduction
2.1 Background
2.2 Objectives and Scope
2.3 Methodology
3.0 Observations and Recommendations
3.1 Relevance:
3.1.1 Alignment with Government and Department priorities and objectives
3.1.2 Addressing the Needs of Canadians
3.1.3 Recommendation
3.2 Efficiency
3.2.1 Governance Structure
3.2.2 Collaboration between CCG Fleet and Clients
3.2.3 Recommendations
3.3 Effectiveness
3.3.1 Achievement of Expected Outcomes
3.3.1.1 Safe and Secure Delivery of Service
3.3.1.2 Efficient and Effective Delivery of Service
3.3.1.3 Re-supply of Northern Communities
3.3.2 Recommendations
3.4 Economy
3.4.1 Minimizing Costs
3.4.2 Cost recovery for services
3.4.3 Recommendations
4.0 Management Action Plan

List of Acronyms

ADM – Assistant Deputy Minister
ASD – Aircraft Services Directorate
CCG – Canadian Coast Guard
DFO – Fisheries and Oceans Canada
DG – Director General
EC – Environment Canada
FAIS – Fleet Activity Information System
FAM – Fisheries and Aquaculture Management
FEB – Fleet Executive Board
HO – Hazardous Occurrences
HR – Human Resources
ISM – International Management Code for Safe Operations of Ships and for the Prevention of Pollution
ISPS – International Ship and Port Security Safety Code
ITS – Integrated Technical Services
NHQ – National Headquarters
NWPA – Navigable Waters Protection Act
MOU – Memorandum of Understanding
MSET – Marine Security Enforcement Team
OAG – Office of the Auditor General
OCCOE – Organization and Classification Centre of Expertise
PAA – Program Activity Architecture
RCMP – Royal Canadian Mounted Police
RMFO – Regional Management Fleet Organization
ROC – Regional Operations Centre
SC – Ship’s Crew
SCOFO – Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans
SLA – Service Level Agreements
SO – Ship’s Officers
SOA – Special Operating Agency
TC – Transport Canada

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1.0 Executive Summary

1.1 Introduction

The federal government is mandated to play a lead role in ensuring the sustainable use and development of the country’s oceans and inland waterways. The Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) is the national institution by which Canada exerts its influence and presence in much of Canada’s waters. Its mandate is derived from the Constitution Act, 1867, the Oceans Act as well as the Canada Shipping Act, 2001.

The CCG provides the civilian fleet that serves as the on-water responder supporting all maritime priorities of the federal government. The CCG Fleet provides support to CCG and Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) programs, as well as other government departments and agencies. The Fleet consists of 114 vessels and 22 helicopters. In 2008-09, the estimated expenditures of the Fleet were $322.3M.

1.2 Objectives ad Scope

The objectives of the evaluation were to assess the relevance of Fleet activities in relation to DFO’s strategic outcomes and the Government of Canada’s priorities; and, the performance of Fleet activities in terms of efficiency, effectiveness and economy.

1.3 Summary of Observations and Recommendations

1.3.1 Relevance

The Canadian Coast Guard operates Canada’s civilian fleet and has the mandate to provide coast guard services for the safe, economical and efficient movement of ships in Canadian waters through the provision of aids to navigation, marine communications and traffic management, ice breaking and channel maintenance services. In addition, CCG is responsible for the marine component of the federal search and rescue program and marine pollution response. Finally, CCG supports departments, boards and agencies of the Government of Canada through the provision of ships, aircraft and other marine services. For instance, CCG provides vessels and crews to DFO in support of Science and Fisheries and Aquaculture Management (FAM) programs, and to the RCMP in support of National Security programs.

Through these activities,the Fleet contributes to the achievement of two of DFO’s strategic objectives: Safe and Accessible Waterways and Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture. The Department’s Program Activity Architechiture (PAA) demonstrates a linkage only to Safe and Accessible Waterways.  For government wide objectives, the CCG Fleet contributes to sustainable economic growth and safe and secure communities.

1.3.2 Performance

1.3.2.1 Efficiency

Governance

The CCG governance structure allows for clearly delineating Fleet’s roles and responsibilities between NHQ and the Regions. However, a standard organization structure which was to be implemented in 2006 for the regional CCG operations has not fully taken place.
For the governance of the Fleet in relation to other parts of the CCG, there is less clarity in the roles, responsibilities and accountabilities particularly with Integrated Technical Services (ITS). There are varying degrees of understanding as to the responsibilities and accountability for vessel maintenance and refit.

In terms of the governance of helicopters, these assets were transferred from Transport Canada to DFO in 1996. TC continues to hold the operating licences to fly the helicopters and is responsible for ensuring they provide the helicopter services in an economical, efficient, and effective manner. CCG is financially responsible to TC for expenses associated with the helicopters (approximately $20M annually) and TC submits invoices to CCG NHQ for expenses it incurs and these are paid regionally. The CCG regional operations staff has indicated that they do not have the tools to assess whether invoices clearly reflect the true cost of helicopter operations.  No formal independent review or audit of the arrangement and invoicing procedures has been conducted by CCG/DFO.

Planning

The planning for vessels and helicopters is done using a bottom up approach beginning at the regional level. This process works well; however, on the implementation of the plan, clients raised concerns that their requirements were not being met and that their planned days on the vessels were being allocated to other fleet clients with out adequate explanations. Much reliance is placed on the experience of the Superintendents of the Regional Operations Centres (ROC) to make changes to the plan as required. There are no formal guidelines provided to deal with changes to the plan. The Fleet Operations Plan is funded by clients based on their approved planned operational days.

Since 2006, CCG has been working to establish the Fleet Operational Readiness as a foundation for planning longer term capacity requirements. It is centered on the theme of ensuring that CCG has the means and the ability and appropriate management functions to respond to the on-water and marine related needs in a safe, timely and effective manner. At the time of the evaluation, Service Level Agreements (SLA) were not in place between Fleet and CCG programs or with DFO Science and FAM programs.

1.3.2.2 Effectiveness

Achievement of Expected Results

The Fleet is achieving its expected result of Safe and Secure Delivery of Service. The safety and security of the fleet, seagoing personnel, clients, support staff and passengers are managed through the CCG Safety and Security Management System. The process is well documented and results indicate that Fleet operates in a safe and secure manner.

The Fleet’s indicator for the achievement of an Efficient and Effective provision of CCG Fleet Services is the percentage of service delivered (operational days) versus approved service planned (operational days). Fleet activities involve both vessels and helicopters; however, expected results for the Fleet are measured in operational days and apply to vessels only. In the case of helicopters, there is no defined performance measurement strategy, other than actual hours compared to approved planned hours, which does not give a clear indication of the impact that the helicopter services have.

The measurement of Fleet performance is based on information extracted from the Fleet Activity Information System (FAIS). The evaluation team has concerns over the accuracy of the data and the reliability it can place on it in assessing the performance of the Fleet. The evaluation team’s analysis of information provided indicated that during the period from 2003-04 to 2007-08, the Fleet did not achieve its expected outcome for all programs (CCG, DFO and other). The 2006-2007 Fleet Annual Report comes to a different conclusion and suggests that, for the most part, the Fleet was meeting or exceeding its approved planned operational days. Both conclusions may be valid based on different interpretation of the data. However, it is an indication that there is no conclusive evidence to support the Fleet’s achievement or non achievement of an efficient and effective provision of CCG Fleet services.

The expected outcomes identified by the Fleet as their measure of success do not give a true indication of its performance or realm of responsibilities. The measure of the Fleet’s success is based primarily on the number of operational days that is provided to clients, however this does not mean that they were effective days and succeeded in what they had set out to achieve. For example, the Fleet may be able to provide operational days to a client; however, it may not be at the most opportune time for effective delivery of the program.

The Fleet’s primary role is that of a service provider to the CCG programs. In order to have a true measurement of performance of the Fleet and the CCG programs, a collaborative approach is required that addresses fleet performance and program delivery. This approach should recognize the contribution of the Fleet and the respective programs in the achievement of CCG objectives as well as define clear and concise expectation and accountabilities for all involved the delivery of services.
 
Over 70% of the CCG Fleet is beyond the half way mark of their anticipated life cycle. The 2008 Fleet Operations Plan indicates that, with few exceptions, CCG has a fully deployed asset base with no backup vessels or flexibility in the event of vessel breakdown or increased demand. Furthermore, vessels are assigned minimum maintenance time in order to meet as many program requirements as possible.

The Fleet is facing some major challenges in the immediate future in dealing with capacity and utilization. Demands on the Fleet such as Maritime Security, 2010 Olympics and increased shipping in the North will affect its ability to deliver effective and efficient service.

In addition, the delayed delivery dates for the new mid shore patrol vessels to be used for the Marine Security Enforcement Team (MSET) activities, is putting increased pressure on the availability of some assets in the Fleet.
 
The Fleet is not able to fully meet the needs of existing clients. The CCG need to set parameters on services that can be provided and establish priorities for delivery of service to its core clients (i.e. CCG and DFO programs).

A number of human resources (HR) related issues were raised by those interviewed during the evaluation that could affect the Fleet ability to delivery efficient and effective services. These are the use of inconsistent competency profiles, crewing level of vessels during periods of re-fit and succession planning.

A third expected result for the Fleet relates to the “Re-supply of Northern communities for which there is no commercial service”. The performance indicator for this result is the percentage of CCG northern re-supply cargo (in metric tonnes) delivered compared to the amount approved in the plan. The type of measure is output oriented, and does not assess any impact that the re-supply of the Northern communities has had; thus, it may not be a full indication of the fleet performance in this area.

1.3.2.3 Economy

The Fleet makes every effort it can to minimize costs and maximize operational days to achieve its objectives. The ROC and the regional operational planning groups work with the clients to ensure that the planned activities are accomplished. The aging fleet, as well as the mix of vessels in each region, limits what measures can be put in place to minimize costs and maximize operational days. The ROCs in each region recognize the need to minimize costs and maximize operations and take this into consideration when tasking vessels; the Fleet has made efforts to make use of multi-tasking of vessels. By multi-tasking, the Fleet is able to maximize every operational day they have and minimize costs at the same time to achieve the objectives.

In addition to the funding that the Fleet receives from its clients for services, there are other areas where opportunities for cost recovery may exist. These include:

  • Environment Canada – Weather Buoys (Provision of Vessel Time)
  • Environment Canada – Centre for Inland Waters Burlington Ontario (Barter Arrangement)
  • Transport Canada - Navigable Waters Protection Act (NWPA) (Provision of Helicopter Services)

These opportunities stem from arrangements that have been in place for some time. These opportunities are presented in this report; however, in the cases involving EC, the resolution of these issues is beyond the scope of this evaluation.

1.4 Recommendations

It is recommended that the Commissioner, CCG:

  1. In consultation with the ADM, Corporate Services, ensure that the Department’s Management Resources and Results Structure (MRRS) reflects the Fleet’s role as a service provider and its linkages to the achievement of the appropriate strategic objectives.

  2. In consultation with the Director General, Human Resources, expedite the classification of position descriptions in support of the approved Regional Management Fleet Organization so that selection processes and staffing actions for indeterminate positions can be completed.

  3. Request DFO’s Chief Audit Executive to consider, in the risk-based audit plan, the need to conduct an audit of the arrangements with Transport Canada for its helicopter operations and financial arrangements.

  4. Ensure that guidelines are established to deal with any changes that may be required during the implementation of the Fleet Operations Plan.

  5. Ensure that Service Level Agreements are entered into between the Fleet and its clients. The agreements should clearly set out the expectations of each party involved and cover activities such as accountabilities for program delivery including, planning and changes to plans as well as any information requirements for the Fleet’s clients.

  6. Ensure that guidelines are developed to assist in the Fleet’s response to new demands for services. These guidelines should include priorities and risk assessments for all requests for services.

  7. Ensure that consistent competency profiles are used to crew similar class vessels and that the crewing levels for vessels during re-fit periods are clarified.

  8. Develop succession planning and recruitment strategies that identify objectives and targets to address the shortage of sea-going personnel.

  9. Establish a collaborative approach to developing a performance measurement strategy that addresses both the Fleet performance and CCG program delivery. This performance measurement strategy should include all activities of the Fleet and clearly and concisely identify expectations and accountabilities of all those involved in the delivery of services.

  10. Ensure that clear performance measures are identified for helicopters and revisit the performance measure for northern re-supply activities.

  11. Formalize, or provide evidence of a formalized arrangement with Transport Canada for the provision of helicopter services for the Navigable Water Protection Act program. This should include the consideration of cost recovery for helicopter hours currently provided at no cost to TC.

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2.0 Introduction

2.1 Background

Canada is a coastal nation with a strong maritime tradition and a reliance on maritime transportation and resource-based industries. It has the longest coastline in the world, the world’s largest archipelago and an inland waters system that stretches from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Lake Superior. As such, Canada must have a responsive and operationally ready federal maritime presence, service and capabilities.

The federal government is mandated to play a lead role in ensuring the sustainable use and development of the country’s oceans and inland waterways. The Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) is the national institution by which Canada exerts its influence and presence in much of Canada’s waters.

The CCG has a long history of delivering well defined maritime services and programs on behalf of the government of Canada.. Its mandate is provided by the Oceans Act (section 41) and some additional powers necessary to fulfill that mandate are provided by the Canada Shipping Act, 2001 (Parts 5 and 8, amongst others). These two Acts are enacted by Parliament pursuant to its exclusive legislative jurisdiction provided by the Constitution Act, 1867, (subsections 91(9) and (10)).

In 1995, the CCG merged with Fisheries and Ocean Canada (DFO). In 2005, the CCG became a Special Operating Agency within DFO. The CCG provides the civilian fleet that serves as the on-water responder supporting all maritime priorities of the federal government. The CCG Fleet, depicted in the Department’s Program Activity Architecture (PAA) as Fleet Operational Readiness, provides support to CCG and DFO programs, as well as and other government departments and agencies, and is managed through the Fleet Directorate at National Headquarters (NHQ) and Regional Operational Services Directorates.

The CCG has a fleet consisting of 114 vessels and 22 helicopters. In 2008-09, the estimated expenditures of the Fleet were $322.3M.

2.2 Objectives and Scope

The objectives of the evaluation were to assess:

  1. The relevance of Fleet activities in relation to DFO’s strategic outcomes and the Government of Canada’s priorities and the extent to which they continue to address the needs of Canadians;

  2. The Performance of the Fleet in delivering its activities in terms of:

    • Efficiency – the extent to which expected outputs are produced with the least amount of input (resources).
    • Effectiveness – the extent to which the Fleet is achieving its expected outcomes.
    • Economy – the extent to which costs of resources used are minimized but having regard for quality and quantity.

The evaluation was national in scope and included CCG Fleet Directorate at Headquarters and all regions (through on-site visits and/or electronically). The evaluation covered all activities of the Fleet, including vessels and helicopters as well as the progress achieved by the Fleet in implementing Operational Readiness initiatives.

The Evaluation Branch of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) is currently leading an evaluation of the Marine Security Enforcement Team (MSET) initiative. As part of the CCG Fleet evaluation, the DFO Evaluation team committed to collaborate to the extent possible with the RCMP on the MSET evaluation. At the time of writing this evaluation report, the RCMP had not completed it evaluation of MSET. Therefore, the results of the MSET evaluation will also be tabled at DFO’s Departmental Evaluation Committee but at a later date.

2.3 Methodology

An evidenced-based approach to the evaluation was undertaken, whereby conclusions and recommendations are based on objective, quantitative and documented evidence to the fullest extent possible.

A multiple lines of evidence approach was used for the evaluation and included:

  • Review of CCG files and program documentation;
  • Interviews with CCG Fleet staff at NHQ and regional staff;
  • Interviews with DFO/CCG internal clients representatives;
  • Interviews with external CCG Fleet clients;
  • Review of relevant national and regional databases (e.g., Fleet Activity Information System (FAIS) and performance measurement information); and
  • Review and analysis of information collected.

Methodology Limitations

Much reliance for performance measurement is placed by the Fleet on the Fleet Activity Information System (FAIS). FAIS is a semi-automated system that collects data on the activities carried out by the Fleet. There are concerns about the reliability of the data in FAIS. While some FAIS information is used in this report, the evaluation team has concerns about the accuracy of the information. Also, information in FAIS can be interpreted in different ways by CCG staff.

The CCG currently has a project underway to upgrade FAIS and improve the quality of the information in the system.

Other important limitations were the time constraints for the completion of the evaluation and the loss of key evaluation staff during the project:

  • In order to meet Treasury Board requirements to demonstrate progress in achieving full coverage of DFO’s direct spending program in time for the 2008-09 Management Accountability Framework assessment by TB, the evaluation team was constrained in the extent of the analysis of information that could be carried out.
  • The loss of staff from this evaluation team specifically, and the Evaluation Directorate in general, had significant impacts on the extent of the work that could be carried out.

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3.0 Observations and Recommendations

The CCG has come under scrutiny in recent years through reports by the Office of the Auditor General (OAG) and the Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans (SCOFO). In addition, the CCG has commissioned a number of other reviews of its own activities, including the A-Base Review (August 2006) and the Vessel Maintenance Management Review (June 2008). These reports identified numerous observations and made recommendations for improvement. Some of the issues raised in the past have been resolved; however, this current evaluation disclosed many of the same issues that have been identified previously.  

3.1 Relevance

3.1.1 Alignment with Government and Department priorities and objectives

The Fleet mandate and activities are directly aligned with Government and Department priorities and objectives.

The Canadian Coast Guard operates Canada’s civilian fleet on behalf of the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and has the mandate to provide coast guard services for the safe, economical and efficient movement of ships in Canadian waters through the provision of aids to navigation and ice breaking services, amongst others. In addition, CCG is responsible for the marine component of the federal search and rescue program and marine pollution response. It is through the Fleet that these activities are delivered.

Finally, CCG supports departments, boards and agencies of the Government of Canada through the provision of ships, aircraft and other marine services. Generally this means that CCG provides vessels and crews to DFO and other federal departments, boards or agencies in support of their programs. For example, in its contribution to the National Security program, CCG provides vessels and crews to the RCMP to allow RCMP fulfill its mandate. In addition, the CCG Fleet provides a platform to DFO for the purpose of conducting fisheries science, hydrography, oceanography and other marine sciences, and for DFO to have a presence on water to execute its fisheries management activities as provided by the Fisheries Act and the Coastal Fisheries Protection Act.
 
The Fleet also provides support to other government departments and agencies, and international organizations. However, it is not regularly funded for such activities. In addition, the Fleet helps to assert Canada's sovereignty in the Arctic through its icebreaking.

DFO has three strategic objectives:

  • Safe and Accessible Waterways;
  • Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture; and
  • Healthy and Productive Aquatic Ecosystems; and

The Fleet is shown in the Department’s PAA as having a direct linkage only to the strategic objective of Safe and Accessible Waterways. However because of its role as a service provider for both CCG and DFO programs, the linkages are broader than that.
The Fleet activities contribute directly to all of the objectives listed above through its work with aids to navigation, search and rescue and ice breaking and by providing a platform for DFO Science and FAM activities.

For government wide objectives, the CCG Fleet contribute to sustainable economic growth and safe and secure communities.

3.1.2 Addressing the Needs of Canadians

The CCG serves clients in all sectors of the Canadian economy: the general public, commercial shippers, ferry operators, fishers, recreational boaters, coastal communities, and other
government departments and agencies. The CCG has a direct and important impact on the lives of Canadians and ensures the safe use of Canadian waterways, and facilitates the smooth functioning of the Canadian economy. s

3.1.3 Recommendation

It is recommended that the Commissioner, CCG:

  1. In consultation with the ADM, Corporate Services, ensure that the Department’s Management Resources and Results Structure reflects the Fleet’s role of a service provider and its linkages to the achievement of the appropriate strategic objectives.

3.2 Efficiency

3.2.1 Governance Structure

In 2005, the CCG became a Special Operating Agency (SOA). Under the SOA, the CCG is led by the Commissioner, CCG who reports to the Deputy Minister. At NHQ, the Fleet is led by a Director General (DG) who reports to the Commissioner of the CCG. The DG is supported by four directors who share responsibility for Fleet management.

In each of the five CCG regions, the CCG is led by a Regional Assistant Commissioner who reports to the Commissioner at HQ. The Director, Operational Services manages the Fleet at the regional level and reports to the Regional Assistant Commissioner.

The overall CCG Fleet is managed by the Fleet Executive Board (FEB). This board is composed of the DG, Fleet and Directors within the Fleet Directorate at HQ and the Directors of Operational Services in the regions. FEB reports to the Management Board of the CCG and is charged with the responsibility of developing, implementing and ensuring the consistent application of management policies for the Canadian Coast Guard Fleet across the country. Specifically, the Committee is responsible for the management of human resources, financial resources, assets, client relations, and operational services.

This governance structure has allowed for clearly delineating Fleet roles and responsibilities between HQ and the Regions.  However, a standard regional organization structure was to be implemented in 2006 for the regional CCG operations has not yet been fully implemented. All positions have not yet been classified because of delays with the Organization and Classification Centre of Expertise (OCCOE). Position descriptions have not been approved consequently competitions cannot be held and positions staffed on an indeterminate basis. It was noted that some position descriptions date back to the pre CCG merger/Transport Canada (TC) days in the 1990s.

In terms of the governance of the Fleet in relation to other parts of the CCG, there is less clarity, in the roles, responsibilities and accountabilities particularly Integrated Technical Services (ITS). In the case of ITS, there are varying degrees of understanding of the responsibilities and accountability for vessel maintenance and refit, in particular, the roles of the Commanding Officers, Chief Engineers (Fleet) and the Superintendents, Marine Engineering (ITS). This issue has been raised in the CCG’s internal report on the Vessel Maintenance Management Review (June 2008) and recommendations made to clarify the situation. An action plan has been prepared to address these recommendations.

Helicopters

In 1996, helicopters assets, along with approximately $20 million in O&M funding, were transferred from Transport Canada (TC) to DFO. The aircraft operator certificates however, remained with TC. It is only TC who can actually fly the helicopters.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), signed in 2000/2001, defines the roles and responsibilities of both CCG and TC.

In CCG, an Aviation Officer (as required/suggested by the MOU), is responsible for overseeing, managing and coordinating approvals for all Helicopter activities, as well as, the development of National flying requirements, determination of fleet distribution, establishment of departmental administrative procedures, standards, and guidelines, and funding on a national basis. The Aviation Officer reports directly to the Director of Fleet Operational Services at NHQ and acts as the main liaison between DFO and TC, as they deal with TC on a day-to-day basis at HQ and in the Regions.

CCG is financially responsible to TC for pilot salaries, equipment repairs, and new parts, whereby TC is responsible for managing, operating and maintaining the fleet of helicopters. While TC carries out these responsibilities, they are also to ensure they provide the helicopter services in an economical, efficient, and effective manner.

TC submits invoices to CCG NHQ for expenses it incurs and these are paid regionally. The CCG regional operations staff has indicated that they do not have the tools to assess whether invoices clearly reflect the true cost of helicopter operations. No formal independent review or audit of the arrangement and invoicing procedures has been conducted by CCG/DFO. This evaluation does not assess whether the CCG has the management controls in place to ensure that TC is providing helicopter services in an appropriate manner and whether or not it is billed appropriately. 

3.2.2 Collaboration between CCG Fleet and Clients

Planning

The planning process for vessels and helicopters is done using a bottom up approach starting at the regional level. In late summer/early fall of each year, regional Fleet staff sends out a call letter asking clients, both internal and external, to identify their requirements for the subsequent fiscal year. These requirements are expressed in the number of operational days or helicopters hours required and the time of the year they are required. Many of the requirements are based on historical trends and are often based on set timelines for the client to deliver their programs. For example, there are only certain times of the year that DFO Science can do scientific surveys; Aids to Navigation have to be placed in the water at specific times to meet level of service requirements. In the regions, Client Consultation Committees have been established and meet to work out any discrepancies or conflicts in order to arrive at an agreed upon regional plan.

Once the regional plans have been prepared, they are sent to NHQ where they are analysed and further discussions take place, with clients participating, to arrive at an integrated plan at the NHQ level. The Fleet prepares the plan based on the requirements that have been identified and the availability of vessels to deliver the service. The plan is costed out and discussions take place with the clients to determine whether funds are available to pay for the requested number of operational days or helicopters hours. Once the plan is agreed to by the Fleet and its clients, a national Fleet Operations Plan is tabled before the FEB and then with the CCG Commissioner for approval. When approved, the plan is provided to the regions for implementation. A helicopter plan is also prepared and follows a similar integrated process.

Implementation of Plan

Much of the responsibility for implementing the plan lies with the Superintendent of the Regional Operations Centres (ROC). Vessels are tasked by the ROC to their assigned missions based on the plan. If changes are required to the plan during the year, the Superintendent of the ROC consults and advises the clients of the changes and the potential impact on their program, i.e., lost operational days. There is no formal mechanism in place for the client to recover any lost operational days as a result of changes to the plan or unavailability of vessels. Much reliance is placed on the experience of the Superintendents to make the appropriate changes to the plan as required. Some clients indicated that arrangements are sometimes worked out with the ROC to get their operational days back during the season but this is on an ad hoc basis.

During the evaluation, interviewees (CCG and DFO programs) raised concerns that their requirements were not being met and that their planned days on the vessels were being allocated to other fleet clients without adequate explanations.

While it is recognized that there are times when an informal approach must be taken, nevertheless, there should be some guidance provided when deviations from the plan are required. This would help alleviate concerns that one client is getting preferential treatment over another.

In addition, the fleet does not provide periodic reports to clients indicating the progress made against the approved planned activities. All clients interviewed felt that this was lacking and it would be a useful tool for them. Consultation with clients by the Fleet may be required to determine what there reporting requirements are. 

At the time of this evaluation, Service Level Agreements (SLAs) were not in place between the Fleet and Maritime Services for the delivery of the internal CCG programs nor between the Fleet and DFO’s Science and FAM programs. SLAs could clearly define expected levels of service to be provided by the Fleet as well as establish performance measurement criteria by which the Fleet could be assessed. It could also assign accountabilities for delivery or non-delivery of program activities.

The Fleet is currently negotiating with the DFO Science and FAM programs to prepare Service Level Agreements (SLA) that will outline the terms and conditions of providing the transfer of funds to the CCG, in exchange for delivery of services, for the duration of the SLA. Both Science and FAM staff expressed concerns about transferring funds to CCG on a semi–permanent basis. They were concerned that once funds were transferred, they would not have any control over the delivery of service by the Fleet. In the past, if the Fleet has been unable to deliver the planned operational days to the program, there was no mechanism to make up for those lost days or to recover funds that had already been transferred to the Fleet.

Funding

The Fleet Operations Plan is funded by clients based on their approved planned operational days. In the case of CCG programs, the funds required to support them are included in the Fleet budget. Up to and including 2008-09, funds were transferred from DFO programs to the Fleet for their approved planned operational days.

Since 2006, CCG has been working to establish the Fleet Operational Readiness as a foundation for planning the longer term capacity requirements of the CCG Fleet. Operational Readiness is the framework by which to address the long-term fleet planning and funding horizon, the service accords with Government of Canada clients and the corresponding business model. It is centered on the theme of ensuring that CCG has the means and the ability and appropriate management functions (financial, operational, and technical) to respond to the on-water and marine related needs of Canadians and the Government of Canada in a safe, timely and effective manner now and in the future.

With the introduction of the operational readiness concept and the development of the corresponding business framework (including charging, pricing policies and business rules), the financial resources required to support an operationally ready fleet must be transparent to program clients. This should include regular reporting to the programs on the service being provided as well as the cost of that service.

With the introduction of Fleet Operational Readiness, the importance of SLAs is even greater as these agreements can set out the expectations of the clients and the Fleet and a clear understanding of accountabilities and risks assumed by each party.

3.2.3 Recommendations

It is recommended that the Commissioner of the CCG:

2. In consultation with the Director General, Human Resources, expedite the classification of position descriptions in support of the approved Regional Management Fleet Organization (RMFO) so that selection processes and staffing actions for indeterminate positions can be completed.

3. Request DFO’s Chief Audit Executive to consider, in the risk-based audit planning, the need to conduct an audit of the arrangements with Transport Canada for its helicopter operations and financial arrangements.

4. Ensure that guidelines are established to deal with any changes that may be required during the implementation of the Fleet Operations Plan.

5. Ensure that Service Level Agreements are entered into between the Fleet and its clients. The agreements should clearly set out the expectations of each party involved and cover activities such as accountabilities for program delivery including, planning and changes to plans as well as any information requirements for the Fleet’s clients.

3.3 Effectiveness

Effectiveness is the extent to which expected outcomes are achieved. The following expected results are identified for the Fleet:

  • Safe and secure delivery of Fleet services for the Government of Canada;
  • Effective and efficient delivery of CCG fleet services for the Government of Canada.
  • Re-supply of Northern communities for which there is no commercial services.

Fleet activities involve both vessels and helicopters. Expected results for the Fleet are measured in terms of operational days and apply to vessels; however, this does not assist in assessing the true impact of Fleet activity.

In the case of helicopters, there is no defined performance measurement strategy, other than actual hours compared to approved planned hours, which does not give a clear indication of the impact that the helicopter services have. While there is reporting on an annual basis of actual helicopters hours versus approved planned hours, this is not a true indicator of performance measure that would demonstrate impact or a contribution to achievement of CCG objectives.

In carrying out these responsibilities, TC is also to ensure they provide the helicopter services in an economical, efficient, and effective manner. A more meaningful indicator of performance than the comparison of planned versus actual hours is required for the helicopter activities.

Even though, the aircraft operator certificates are owned by TC and an arrangement was made with TC to provide the personnel and services necessary to manage, operate, and maintain the fleet of helicopters, CCG is accountable for delivering services to its clients and should identify expected results from its activities. In DFO’s 2007-08 MRRS report, there is no mention of any expected results for helicopter activities.

The discussion of expected results in this section focuses on the vessel activities.  

3.3.1 Achievement of Expected Outcomes

3.3.1.1 Safe and Secure Delivery of Service

The safety and security of the fleet, seagoing personnel, clients, support staff and passengers are managed through the CCG Safety and Security Management System. This management system is based on the International Management Code for Safe Operations of Ships and for the Prevention of Pollution (ISM). Additional security requirements have been added in accordance with directives of the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS). As a result, a security plans and compliance with all international security requirements is required for all vessels over 100 gross registered tons.

The Safety and Security Management system is comprised of a series of national, regional and ship specific procedures, action plans, internal and independent verifications (audits), personnel and management roles, responsible and accountabilities communicated through the Safety and Security Manual. Incidents, Hazardous Occurrences (HO) and Non conformities are identified, actioned and tracked systematically. The process is well documented and results indicate that Fleet operates in a Safe and Secure manner. Overall clients have indicated that they are confident that the Fleet takes all possible measures to ensure that service delivery is done in a safe and secure environment.

3.3.1.2 Efficient and Effective Delivery of Service

The Fleet’s indicator for the achievement of an Efficient and Effective provision of CCG Fleet Services for the Government of Canada is the percentage of service delivered (operational days) versus service approved planned (operational days) for:

  • All programs
  • CCG programs
  • DFO Science
  • DFO FAM
  • Government of Canada Programs

In order to assess whether the Fleet is achieving its expected outcome of efficient and effective delivery of service, the measurement is based on information extracted from the Fleet Activity Information System (FAIS).

The evaluation team has concerns regarding the accuracy of the data and the reliability it can place on it in assessing the performance of the Fleet. FAIS data originates on the vessels from and is provided to a regional FAIS coordinator at the ROC who inputs the information into the system. Regional information is then rolled into a National database. The level of attention given to FAIS varies from region to region and can impact the quality of the information produced by FAIS.

Concerns were also expressed during the evaluation by Fleet staff as well as clients on the accuracy of the FAIS data. In addition, concerns were expressed to the effect that FAIS data is subject to interpretation and there is some confusion over how this data is used to measure results. There is also a lack of understanding on the part of clients as to how the CCG uses the data to determine the operational days provided. For example, provision of a portion of a day (less than 24 hours) may be considered a full operational day against the approved plan. CCG has recently undertaken a project to update and improve the quality of information in the system.

The evaluation team was provided with information by the Fleet staff to assist in assessing performance. The team’s analysis of the information indicated that during the period from 2003-04 to 2007-08, the Fleet did not achieve its expected outcome for all programs (CCG, DFO and other). In 2007-08, the Fleet was close to achieving its expected outcome but only because all programs had decreased their planned requirements for that year.

During the five years from 2003-04 to 2007-08, we concluded that the Fleet has not been able to consistently provide the planned days to the CCG internal programs. For example in 2007-08, the Fleet under delivered on the number of operational days to the Aids to Navigation program by 18% on a national basis. There was a similar trend for this program in the years prior as well.

Another example related to 2007-08, where the Fleet exceeded the planned operational days for SAR by 7%, however in the preceding four years, it failed to meet the SAR planned days. In 2007-08, when the Fleet did meet the planned days, the requirement went down to 15,330 days from 19,470 days in 2006-07. The Fleet delivered approximately the same number of days to the SAR program in each of those years.

While the information provided to the evaluation team indicate that the Fleet is not delivering its approved planned operational days, the 2006-2007 Fleet Annual Report comes to a different conclusion and suggests that, for the most part, the Fleet was meeting or exceeding its planned operational days.

In addition, Fleet provides a platform to DFO Science and FAM programs as well as to other government departments/agencies. For DFO’s FAM and Science programs, the situation was similar to the internal CCG programs where the Fleet has not consistently provided the approved planned operational days. On the other hand, the Fleet has consistently met or exceeded the planned requirements of the other government departments/agencies.

Both conclusions may be valid based on different interpretation of the data. However, it is an indication that there is no conclusive evidence to support the Fleet’s achievement or non achievement of its expected outcome.

Performance Measurement

The expected outcomes identified by the Fleet as their measure of success do not give a true indication of its performance or realm of responsibilities. The measure of the Fleet’s success is based primarily on the number of operational days that is provided to clients. The fact that the Fleet provide a certain number of operational days does not mean that they were effective days and succeeded in what they had set out to achieve.

Performance measures for the Fleet, based on the number of operational days delivered, are not a true indication of the Fleet’s performance. The Fleet’s primary role is that of a service provider to the CCG programs.

The Fleet provides a platform for the delivery of internal CCG programs such as Search and Rescue, Aids to Navigation, Environmental Response, Ice Breaking and Maritime Security. Each of these programs is governed by Levels of Service which must be met as a result of various laws and international standards. The Director General, Maritime Services is accountable for the delivery of these programs; however, it is the Fleet that is responsible for actually delivering a portion of these programs. If the Fleet cannot deliver these programs due to unavailability of vessels or helicopters, refit delays or unplanned lay up of vessels, there does not appear to be any accountability placed on it. On the other hand, if the programs are able to achieve or surpass their levels of service, then it is the program that is considered successful rather than the Fleet.  The Fleet would not exist without having to provide service to the programs and it would be difficult for the programs to deliver on their activities without the Fleet.

In order to have a true measurement of performance of the Fleet and the CCG programs, a more collaborative approach is required. This approach should recognize the contribution of the Fleet and the respective programs in the achievement of CCG objectives. This more collaborative approach should also clearly define expectation and accountabilities for all involved the delivery of services.

Vessel Capacity and Utilization

The CCG fleet consists of 114 vessels, over 70% of which are beyond the half way mark of their anticipated life cycle. The 2008 Fleet Operations Plan indicates that, with few exceptions, all vessels were scheduled and being utilized to their maximum capacity. CCG has a fully deployed asset base with no backup vessels. At first glance, this appears to be an effective use of resources; however, given the age of the current fleet, maximum capacity means that no additional resources or flexibility exists in the event of vessel breakdown or increased demand. Furthermore, vessels are assigned minimum maintenance time in order to meet as many program requirements as possible. This places further stress on the vessels and their capacity to perform at peak levels.

Sixty-six percent of the time that vessels are available, they are assigned to clients. When vessels were not available, they were primarily in winterization (20%) or in maintenance (11%)  These percentages have shown little variation from 2003-2004 to 2007-2008.

The Fleet is facing some major challenges in the immediate future in dealing with capacity and utilization that will affect its ability to deliver effective and efficient service. The fleet is already fully utilized and the CCG continues to receive and consider new requests for support. Some examples follows:

Maritime Security - In recent years, the CCG has engaged in activities relating to Maritime Security, including increased presence on the water and as part of the Maritime Security Enforcement Team (MSET) on the Great Lakes.

2010 Olympics – CCG will play a support role to DND and the RCMP for security at the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver.

Increased Shipping in the North - The increased shipping in the North will place greater demands on the Fleet to provide increased ice breaking, aids to navigation, Search and Rescue and Environmental Response services.

Deferral of the acquisition of mid-shore patrol vessels - The delayed delivery dates for the new mid shore patrol vessels to be used for the Marine Security Enforcement Team (MSET) activities, is putting increased pressure on the availability of some assets in the Fleet.

The Fleet is currently unable to fully meet the needs of existing clients. For example FAM in some regions charter vessels to meet the needs that the Fleet cannot address. They are also studying the feasibility of doing more chartering of vessels.

Because of its status as the “Canada’s Civilian Fleet”, the CCG makes every effort to deliver on all requests for service. With its current capacity and aging fleet, the CCG will have to take decisions on what services the Fleet can realistically provide. The CCG needs to establish parameters on services that can be provided and establish priorities for delivery of service to its core clients, i.e., CCG and DFO programs.

Human Resources Related Issues

There were a number of human resources (HR) related issues raised by those interviewed during the evaluation that could affect the Fleet ability to delivery efficient and effective services. These are:

  • Crewing of vessels; and
  • Succession Planning.

These are not new issues and have been raised in previous reports carried out in the CCG, such as reports of the Office of Auditor General (several) and the CCG A-Base Review Report (September 29, 2006). For the Fleet to be able to provide an effective and efficient delivery of services, these are areas that should be addressed.

Crewing of Vessels

Prior to being tasked to sail, vessels must be crewed with employees meeting competency profiles for the particular class of vessel. There are inconsistencies between regions in the competency profiles used to place sea going personnel on the vessels. The Fleet had planned on issuing standard competency profiles in October 2008 that would be consistent for similar class vessels in each region. The evaluation team did not see any evidence that this was done.

In addition, there are differing views, among regions, concerning the crewing of vessels during re-fit periods. Some regions have clearly defined crew level for refit while for others, it is on a case-by-case basis as to the crew level on board during re-fit. The inconsistency in practices in the regions leads to confusion among staff as to their role during re-fit periods and it is also an indication of the lack of clear national direction on the use of resources.

Both of these issues were raised in the 2006 CCG A-Base Review and in the Vessel Maintenance Management Review.

Succession Planning

As noted in the CCG Strategic Human Resources Plan 2008-2011, “Human resources management is the biggest challenge this Agency faces and human resources strategies are key to delivering our business”. The Strategic Plan recognizes the shortage of sea-going personnel world wide, as well as in the CCG.

A significant percentage of the population of several CCG occupational groups is eligible for retirement between 2008 and 2012. In the case of sea-going personnel, about 17% of Ships’ Crews (SC) and 21% of Ships’ Officers (SO) will be eligible to retire during that time period.

The loss of these employees will pose a significant challenge to meeting the needs of clients. Clients are concerned that changes in Fleet personnel and loss due to retirements will lead to a situation whereby CCG management and decision makers are no longer as knowledgeable of program business, needs and requirements and that this will impact their program delivery.

In the CCG HR Strategic Plan, specific focus is given to at-risk groups such as SO and SC in terms of recruitment and retention efforts. While there are strategies identified in the HR Strategic Plan for retention of current employees, such as learning and development as well as acting assignments, the recruitment strategies to attract sea-going personnel is not as rigorous. Furthermore, regions indicated that groups other than SO and SC may have a significant impact on regional operations and their importance should not be underestimated.

In terms of recruitment, the HR Strategic Plan mentions that the intake of officer cadets at the Coast Guard College has increased in 2008 to 48 from the typical 15-25 per year. It does not indicate if this increased intake will continue over the next few years or whether the expected SOs who graduate will compensate for those who will leave the CCG. Also, while the increased enrolment at the Coast Guard College will help the SO situation, it will not help replace the retiring SCs.

There are no clear recruitment objectives or campaign which would be strategic and national in scope. Regions are left to address recruitment issues with limited resources and no clear direction. Unless a recruitment strategy is put in place with clear objectives and targets, it is doubtful that CCG Fleet will be in a position to address its HR issues in time for the anticipated retirement of SCs and SOs and possibly other categories.

3.3.1.3 Re-supply of Northern Communities

The CCG enters in to agreements with the Government of Nunavut and Environment Canada (EC) for the transportation of dry cargo and fuel during the annual re-supply of Northern settlements when commercial carriers are not available. These agreements are entered into by the Assistant Commissioner, Central & Arctic (C&A) Region and the actual work is administered by C&A Region’s Operational Services Branch. The agreements are basically contracts for the delivery of goods to northern communities.

Fleet documentation indicates that the expected result for this activity is the “Re-supply of Northern communities for which there is no commercial service”. The performance indicator for this result is the percentage of CCG northern re-supply cargo (in metric tonnes) delivered compared to plan.

The type of measure is output oriented, and does not assess any impact that the re-supply of the Northern communities has had; thus, it may not be a full indication of the fleet performance in this area.

3.3.2 Recommendations

It is recommended that the Commissioner of the CCG:

6. Ensure that guidelines are developed to assist in the Fleet’s response to new demands for services. These guidelines should include priorities and risk assessments for all requests for services.

7. Ensure that consistent competency profiles are used to crew similar class vessels and that the crewing levels for vessels during re-fit periods are clarified.

8. Develop succession planning and recruitment strategies that identify objectives and targets to address the shortage of sea-going personnel.

9. Establish a collaborative approach to developing a performance measurement strategy that addresses both the Fleet performance and CCG program delivery. This performance measurement strategy should include all activities of the Fleet and clearly and concisely identify expectations and accountabilities of all those involved in the delivery of services.

10. Ensure that clear performance measures are identified for helicopters and revisit the performance measure for northern re-supply activities.

3.4 Economy

3.4.1 Minimizing Costs

The Fleet in each region makes every effort, with the resources it has, to minimize costs and maximize operational days to achieve its objectives. It takes the efforts of the ROC and the regional operational planning groups to work with the clients to ensure that the planned activities are accomplished. The aging fleet, as well as the mix of vessels in each region, limits what measures can be put in place to minimize costs and maximize operational days.

The ROC in each region recognizes the need to minimize costs and maximize operations and take this into consideration when tasking vessels for activities such as SAR or ER incidents. However, it is sometimes unavoidable not to be as efficient as possible and incur extra costs in order to accomplish what is required.

One area in which the Fleet has made strides is the multi-tasking of vessels. By multi-tasking, the Fleet is able to maximize every operational day they have and minimize costs at the same time as achieve objectives.

The rising cost of fuel has been a detriment to the cost efficient manner in which the Fleet can operate. Next to salaries, fuel is the largest single expense that the Fleet incurs. Headquarters manages the fuel budget for all regions so that they can better control over monitor fuel expenditures and consumption by the vessels. To help offset the rising costs of fuel, CCG received funds from Treasury Board for 2008-09.

3.4.2 Cost recovery for services

In addition to the funding that the Fleet receives from its clients for services provided through the Operations Plan, there are other areas where opportunities for cost recovery may exist. For the most part, these opportunities stem from arrangements that have been in place for some time. In the interest of transparency, these opportunities are presented in this report; however, in the cases involving EC, the resolution of these issues is beyond the scope of this evaluation.

Environment Canada – Weather Buoys

EC has weather buoys that must be placed in waters and serviced each year. For this activity, EC is treated as a regular DFO client and included in the annual operational planning process for both vessels and helicopters. Where the placement of buoys involves helicopters time, EC is invoiced for the hours utilized and cost of operations is recovered. In the case of vessel time, EC does not reimburse the CCG for the time spent placing and servicing buoys.

The rationale as to why costs are not recovered for the use of vessels is that EC provides CCG and DFO information collected from the weather buoys. CCG would use the information for Notice to Mariners and DFO Science would use data such as wave information.

This arrangement has been in place for some time. The actual vessel costs related to the weather buoy program has not been determined nor have the benefits received by CCG and DFO Science quantified.

Environment Canada – Centre for Inland Waters BurlingtonOntario

There is a barter arrangement in place involving EC, DFO Science, Corporate Services (Real Property) and CCG. For many years (probably back to the 1970’s), there has been an arrangement for EC being provided with ship time in return for office space for DFO Science in the Canadian Centre for Inland Waters in Burlington.

Currently, DFO Science transfers funds to the Fleet for the ship time used by EC. We understand that EC has a separate source of funding for the programs and could probably arrange for its ship time directly with the CCG.

While this arrangement appears to impact DFO Science and Corporate Services more so than the Fleet, it is still a party in the barter situation.

Transport Canada - Navigable Waters Protection Act (NWPA)

Prior to, and for a period following the merger of CCG and DFO, responsibility for NWPA rested with the CCG. In 2003, responsibility for NWPA was transferred Transport Canada (TC).

To assist them in carrying out their work, NWPA staff obtains the services of CCG helicopters to conduct activities such as, fly-over surveys of remote areas. CCG has an arrangement with TC to provide NWPA with up to $100,000 worth of helicopter hours at no charge each year to do work on their program. This arrangement originally entitled NWPA to have 100 hours (which cost approximately $100,000) each year. Because the rising costs of operating the helicopters, it has been reduced to approximately 80 hours annually. NHQ receives monthly reports from the regions that tracks the number of flying hours spent on this program and keeps an overall tally of the hours spent during the year. When the cost of helicopter hours reaches the $100,000 mark, each additional dollar spent after that is to be cost-recovered from TC.

At the time this evaluation was conducted, there was no evidence of a formalized agreement covering this arrangement nor was there any indication of how long this arrangement will be in place without any recovery of costs for the initial cost of $100,000 of helicopter hours provided.

3.4.3 Recommendations

It is recommended that the Commissioner, CCG:

Formalize, or provide evidence of a formalized arrangement with Transport Canada for the provision of helicopter services for the Navigable Water Protection Act program. This should include the consideration of cost recovery for helicopter hours provided at no cost to TC.

Top of page

4.0 Management Action Plan

Recommendations Management Action Plan Status Report Update
Actions Completed Actions Outstanding Target Date
1.   In consultation with the Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM), Corporate Services (CS), ensure that the Department’s Management Resources and Results Structure (MRRS) reflects the Fleet’s role as a service provider and its linkages to the achievement of the appropriate strategic objectives.

The Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

Continued engagement with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO), and corporately with the Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS), to manage the evolution towards a new MRRS to better reflect Results for Canadians, linkages to overall government objectives, and CCG alignment with the evolving DFO MRRS.

Activities To Date:

  • Fleet Operational Readiness concept as a sub-activity in Coast Guard’s new PAA was approved by the Treasury Board in 2007-8.
  • The major goal of the Fleet Operational Readiness concept is to clearly identify the costs associated with the provision of a fleet that supports a range of government activities.  Continued refinement is linked to CCG/Fisheries and Aquaculture Management (FAM) and the CCG/Science Service Level Agreement (SLA) implementation.

Next Steps:

  • CCG will participate in the departmental update of the MRRS and supporting documents (the Program Activity Architecture (PAA), Departmental Performance Report, Performance Measurement Logic Model, Corporate Risk Profile, etc.) and will support the department in gaining understanding and clarity from TB regarding the FOR program and its role as an enabler resulting from its provision of services as Canada’s civilian fleet.   
   

DFO plans to bring a revised MRRS to TBS for approval in 2010-2011 and for implementation in 2011-12 as part of the Strategic Review process.

All CCG activities and timelines linked to DFO process and timelines.

2.   In consultation with the Director General, Human Resources, expedite the classification of position descriptions so that selection processes and staffing actions for indeterminate positions can be completed.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

The establishment of nationally consistent regional organization structures by measured, calculated progress towards completion of the classification of work descriptions with the Organization and Classification Center of Expertise (OCCOE). 

Activities To Date:

  • Coast Guard has developed a standard regional organization, including the Fleet organization. 
  • Fleet will ensure completed National Model Work Descriptions (NMWDs) for all seagoing positions in this fiscal year.

Next Steps:

  • CCG senior management to continue to provide OCCOE with classification priorities and meet regularly with OCCOE management to expedite the classification of priority NMWDs.
  • Over the next three years, CCG will transition to the CCG Standard Organization structures in all regions, including NCR
   

RMFO directed decision for classification being operationalized.

The CCG Standard Organization structures were announced May 22, 2009 and transition to the new structures has commenced.

Priorities for position classification are in line with the CCG Standard Regional Organization Implementation Plan; but specific target dates for resolution of specific classification actions are at the discretion of the OCCOE.

3.   Request DFO’s Chief Audit Executive to consider, in the risk-based audit plan, the need to conduct an audit of the arrangements with Transport Canada (TC) for its helicopter operations and financial arrangements.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

The CCG/TC relationship for helicopter services is guided by a Memorandum of Understanding with TC – Aircraft Services.  The performance of this arrangement is monitored and actioned via a Helicopter Working Group that meets on a regular basis.

Next Steps:

  • prepare for an audit of this relationship.
   

Memorandum to be sent to DFO’s Chief Audit Executive by March 31, 2009 requesting the audit be included in the Department’s audit plan.

Completion of audit dependant on the priority given in the departmental audit plan.

4.   Ensure that guidelines are established to deal with any changes that may be required during the implementation of the Fleet Operations Plan.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

CCG Fleet has engaged in a stepped process in completing the implementation of Fleet Operational Readiness: establishing the concept; PAA-Fleet Operational Readiness approval; ensuring funding stabilization; and developing the Mission Readiness Framework. 

Activities To Date:

  • CCG Management Board approved Mission Readiness framework in April of 2008.
  • In addition, methodology for changes to the Fleet Operations Plan is included in Service Level Agreement (SLA) documentation (see Recommendations 5 and 6.

Next Steps:

  • Full implementation of the Mission Readiness Framework is planned for 2009-2010 and provides flexible guidelines for making in-year adjustments to Plan.
  • Continue to refine change methodology based on CCG/FAM and CCG/Science SLA evolution.
   

Full implementation of the Mission Readiness Framework is planned for 2009-2010.

Ongoing refinements to the change methodology will be considered during the 3 year SLA pilot project with Science and FAM starting in April 2009 and running to March 31, 2012 . 

5.   Ensure that SLAs are entered into between the Fleet and its clients.  The agreements should clearly set out the expectations of each party involved and cover activities such as accountabilities for program delivery including, planning and changes to plans as well as any information requirements for the Fleet’s clients.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

CCG Fleet implemented an SLA Working Group to include all internal clients and other stakeholders (CCG Maritime Services and Integrated Technical Services, along with DFO Science and FAM, and Finance and Administration) to ensure that all relevant parties participated in the development of the most effective SLAs possible.  The goal of these SLAs are to improve the business relationship between CCG and its clients (Science and FAM) and to come to an agreement on principles, governance structure, the assumption of risk (operational and financial), and to determine performance measurements.

Activities To Date:

  • SLAs or Service accords have existed between certain external clients and the Fleet for many years.  They are in place and effective with other government departments that use the Fleet (e.g., Natural Resources Canada, Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, Government of Nunavut, and United States Military Sealift Command).  In addition, the annually developed Fleet Operations Plan is a key mechanism to ensure ongoing discussion between Fleet and its clients regarding their requirements and affordability.
  • SLAs with Science and FAM have been finalized. 
  •  The Performance Measurement sub-committee of the SLA WG was formed to ensure mutual development of key performance measures and indicators.  FAM, Science, CCG Marine Services, and CCG ITS performance measurement staff meet every two weeks to review and revise current Fleet performance measures based on client input.

Next Steps:

  • On an on-going basis CCG will assess the lessons learned from the SLA process with Science and FAM for application to other clients of Fleet services.
  • Fleet Performance measurement conferences will continue with clients and will include linkages to the overall CCG performance story as well as with DFO personnel involved in the MRRS update initiative.
   

Formal SLAs with Science and FAM have been developed, signed, and have been implemented for 2009-10.

Confirmation or revision of performance measures for the FOR program will be completed in alignment with Departmental and CCG corporate timelines.

6.   Ensure that guidelines are developed to assist in the Fleet’s response to new demands for services. These guidelines should include priorities and risk assessments for all requests for service.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

In addition to the regularly assessing the risks in fulfilling new service demands, the CCG strategy is to engage government clients and stakeholders through a Deputy Minister (DM)-level Strategic Advisory Committee.  CCG further remains abreast of service drivers through a National Marine Advisory Board and Regional Marine Advisory Boards and other consultative mechanisms.

Activities To Date:

  • CCG has advisory bodies both with internal and external clients that are intended to provide advice on competing service requests.
  • Risk assessments assessing the impact on existing service provision are routinely developed during initial request for new services.
  • SLA documentation with external clients already contains methodology for new service requests. 
    All new internal service requests require a risk assessment and Commissioner approval using existing processes.  External new requests require formal DFO/DMC/DM Strategic Advisory Committee approval.
7.   Ensure that consistent competency profiles are used to crew similar class vessels and that the crewing levels for vessels during refit periods are clarified.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

To use a phased approach: develop competency (crewing) profiles; to incorporate the outcomes of the Vessel Maintenance Management Review (VMMR) priorities; to develop a crewing matrix with phased-in implementation.

Activities To Date:

  • By the end of the 2008-2009 fiscal year, Fleet will have established revised competency (crewing) profiles for seagoing personnel.
  • The Fleet Executive Board recently agreed to standardized refit and VLE crewing postures as part of its budget discussions.

Next Steps:

  • Begin implementation of phased approach.
    Final completion March 31, 2012 in line with the completion of the migration to standard organizational structures (as stated in the CCG Business Plan).
8.   Develop succession planning and recruitment strategies that identify objectives and targets to address the shortage of sea-going personnel.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

Building on analysis regarding current and projected need for human resources (HR), CCG has developed a Strategic HR Plan which addresses, among other concerns, the particular issues facing seagoing personnel.  The plan outlines activities designed to bolster career progression, succession and seagoing personnel, and strategically links the Canadian Coast Guard College to fulfilling the need for recruiting more Ships’ Officers.

Activities To Date:

  • A national CCG Strategic HR Plan has been developed and it includes Employment Equity commitments and strategies for recruitment and succession planning of critical groups including ships officers and ships crews.
  • CCG has increased its Officer Cadet intake at the Canadian Coast Guard College to 48 per year from the 15 to 25 typical of previous years.
  • In 2008-2009, Fleet launched a Fleet Human Resources Development Program:
  • Established a Professional Development Unit section at headquarters.
  • Put in place funded rotational assignments for regional staff in the National Co-ordination Centre at headquarters.
  • Established regional developmental positions for seagoing personnel.
  • Ensured that each new vessel class under construction is assigned a Project Director, typically from a region.
  • Opened up Fleet Executive Board meetings to regional Superintendents to ensure effective transference of operational and management knowledge.
  • Involved of regional and operational personnel in the management of North Atlantic and North Pacific Coast Guard fora to promote wider knowledge of international issues and co-operation.
  • The latest Ships’ Officers collective agreement established the same hourly rate of pay for both lay day and conventional crewing systems, thereby removing a significant structural barrier to the migration of seagoing personnel to onshore work in support of their development and CCG succession planning.
  • In 2008-2009, Fleet established a marine version of the Performance Review System which includes the technical training requirements for seagoing personnel. 

Next Steps:

  • Create a National Labour Force Readiness office under the leadership of a CCG senior executive.
  • Fleet will advance an integrated succession planning framework for seagoing personnel based on meaningful review and evaluation of annual performance and individual training and development plans.

                           

Within a comprehensive and integrated CCG HR Strategic Plan, CCG Fleet will continue to focus on implementing strategies to address the key HR challenges faced by CCG Fleet by March 31, 2010. The establishment of the newly created National Labour Force Readiness Office has just been announced.
9.   Establish a collaborative approach to developing a performance measurement strategy that addresses both the Fleet performance and CCG program delivery.  This performance measurement strategy should include all activities of vessels and could clearly identify expectations and accountabilities of all those involved in the delivery of services.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

  • Continue to work with clients to develop ongoing performance indicators for the Fleet component of their programs.  It must be noted that for many CCG Fleet services and program activities, this will require substantive realignment at the program level predicated on an evolving, PAA, program Results-based Management and Accountability Frameworks, shifting operational requirements, and will include client satisfaction feedback (timeliness and quality of services provided), etc.

Activities To Date:

  • The performance measurement framework for the Fleet was developed and confirmed in the context of discussions pertaining to activity logic models and the implementation of the current PAA. 
  • A Fleet Annual Report, including substantive qualitative and quantitative performance reporting, is published annually, beginning with the 2006-2007 fiscal year.
  • Performance measurement indicators and expectations are included in the CCG Performance Measurement Framework and are part of the Management, Resources and Results Structure.  There are a number of TB issues with the CCG MRRS input.
  • CCG has initiated a capital project to upgrade the Fleet Activity Information System (FAIS) which, as the primary data source, is the foundation of Fleet performance measurement. The FAIS Upgrade project, now called iFleet, has included a client satisfaction survey questionnaire to provide feedback to Fleet regarding the services delivered on a mission basis.
  • Fleet is working with clients to refine the existing FAIS methodology and business/reporting rules.

Next Steps:

  • Implement the three-year SLA pilot project with Science and FAM that will allow all participants time to develop, test and modify effective performance measures.
  • Implement revised FAIS methodology and business rules.
  • Continue with the development of the iFleet project which is planned to be in place by fiscal year 2010-11.
   

Revised Fleet performance indicators associated with SLA with clients to be confirmed 2011-2012.

The FAIS Upgrade project, now called iFleet, received EPA approval April 2009.

10. Ensure that clear performance measures are identified for helicopters and revisit the performance measure for northern re-supply activities.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

CCG Existing Strategy:

CCG collects and shares information pertaining to planned helicopter hours versus hours delivered but helicopter services are not part of a formal Fleet performance measurement strategy.

Fleet has reviewed the performance measure for northern re-supply and deemed the current performance indicator sufficient given Fleet’s role.

Next Steps:

  • In consultation with TC (the helicopter service provider), Fleet to develop performance measures for helicopters. 
    Lower priority objective. However, in keeping with CCG’s process for priority setting, this item will be raised as part of CCGs Business Planning process.
–timelines TBD.
11. Formalize, or provide evidence of a formalized  arrangement with TC for the provision of helicopter services for the Navigable Water Protection Act (NWPA) program.  This should include the consideration of cost recovery for helicopter hours currently provided at no cost to TC.

CCG agrees with the recommendation.

Activities to Date:

  • Formal arrangement in place for $100K of helicopter service to support NWPA –in place following the transfer of NWPA from DFO to TC.
  • The arrangement is formalized in the 2005 Resources Transfer Agreement between DFO and TC for the provision of helicopter services up to $100K/year to support NWPA.  Costs are recovered if/when TC exceeds $100K mark in the agreement.
Signed copy of the formal arrangement with TC for the provision of helicopter services for the NWPA program provided to Evaluation.  

June 2009

Complete