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Inspection of the Embassy of Canada - Berlin, Germany Including the Consulates in Munich and Dusseldorf
June 11 - 22, 2012
- Inspection Scope and Objectives
- Executive Summary
- 1 Mission Management
- 2 Foreign Policy and Diplomacy Service (FPDS)
- 3 Commercial Economic (CE)
- 4 Consular
- 5 Common Services
- Appendix A: Mission Resources Fact Sheet
- Appendix B: Frequently Used Acronyms
Inspection Scope and Objectives
The scope of the inspection included a review of mission management and the Foreign Policy and Diplomacy Service, Commercial Economic, Consular and Common Services programs. The inspection objectives were to:
- Assess the effectiveness of the leadership and management practices of the Head of Mission (HOM) and the mission management team;
- Review the alignment of plans and activities and program integration to Government of Canada and departmental objectives and priorities;
- Assess the adequacy of management controls and systems, procedures and the reliability of information for decision making and accountability purposes;
- Determine the extent of compliance with legislation, regulations and operating policies;
- Evaluate the use of resources to determine that they are judiciously used and if value-for-money is received; and
- Make recommendations, where warranted, to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the mission and its programs.
The focus and extent of on-site work was based on an assessment of materiality and related risk. This was done through communication with headquarters bureaux, including briefings by line management and the functional bureaux, review of relevant headquarters and mission documentation, past audit findings and an analysis of recurring trends and systemic issues.
During the inspection, inspection issues and lines of enquiry were further refined from information gathered through interviews with the Head of Mission and program managers, a meeting with Locally Engaged Staff (LES) representatives of the LES Management Consultation Board, individual interviews with staff and the results of other documentation reviewed. The level of inspection work was therefore based on issues and information identified and gathered at all levels: headquarters, mission management and mission operations.
An inspection of mission management, the Foreign Policy and Diplomacy Service (FPDS), Commercial Economic (CE), Consular and Common Services programs was conducted in Germany from June 11 to 22, 2012. The inspection covered the embassy in Berlin and its two spoke missions, the consulates in Munich and Dusseldorf. An audit of these programs took place in 2003.
Germany is of prime strategic importance to Canada and our international objectives. Its support is considered essential to advancing our priorities in Europe, ***. High-level bilateral visits between Canada and Germany provide for ongoing discussion on key regional and international priorities as well as contribute to G-8 and G-20 policy considerations. Germany is the world's fourth largest economy and represents Canada's seventh largest export market. It is also an important partner for both foreign direct investment in Canada and Canadian direct investment abroad. Germany's role in managing the European debt crisis is crucial to the region's financial stability, carrying political and economic implications that extend worldwide.
The missions in Germany are producing good results on a wide scope of high-level bilateral, regional and international issues. Objectives are aligned with DFAIT and Government of Canada priorities; the missions serve as an effective platform for the promotion of Canadian interests with a close and influential like-minded partner. The Head of Mission (HOM) is a senior diplomat and fluent German speaker who leverages his position and network ***. He is supported by a Deputy HOM (DHOM) who supervises all program managers in addition to the Heads of Posts at the consulates. He provides *** leadership on mission management and governance.
The inspection took place soon after the implementation of the deficit reduction action plan (DRAP). At the embassy, 24 LES positions were deleted - of which 17 were due to the closure of the mission's Immigration program. The consulates were not directly affected by staff reductions. Under DRAP, the mission will also dispose of two official vehicles and is transitioning to the private leasing model for staff quarters.
Mission morale had been strong prior to DRAP implementation, which had significant but varied effects across programs. The DRAP measures have generated significant job security concerns and some employees see transformative business practices as precursors to further layoffs. Mission management will need to maintain a focus on internal communication and openly address questions and concerns. The inclusion of all staff in decision-making and change-management processes will be a meaningful element in adapting and rebuilding morale.
The missions in Germany take a pragmatic and pro-active approach to whole-of- government program delivery. The HOM, DHOM and Heads of Post (in Munich and Dusseldorf) leverage their positions and resources to assist partners in achieving their objectives. The programs did, however, express interest in more discussion on medium-term strategic issues. Strengthening this would benefit the coordination of priorities, cross-program working relationships and whole-of-government planning. The Mission Planning and Reporting (MPR) document should more clearly outline partners' interests to facilitate planning and coordination.
Overall, the consulates provide significant value and reach for the DFAIT programs, as well as important infrastructure and leadership for our co-located partners. A regional presence is crucial to the CE program given Germany's decentralized economy and is also valuable for the provision of consular services. Considering that the consulates share program responsibilities on a national basis, effective communication and coordination among the missions is vital. In this regard, there is a need for more structured communication and management from Berlin. An agreement between the embassy and the consulates outlining roles and responsibilities on the CE, FPDS and Common Services programs would be beneficial.
The FPDS program is divided into three sections: Political; Economic; and Public, Cultural and Academic Affairs (Public Affairs). All sections implement their activities effectively, and the program covers a range of issues that are of great interest to Canada. Program planning, however, is segregated, with each section taking a distinct approach. A high-level operational plan should be developed, coordination across the sections improved and meetings set between the DHOM and the section managers. Greater program cohesion would assist the Public Affairs section to transition to a higher-value strategic advocacy role.
The CE program operates as a prime-post system across the three missions. It is a large program that effectively manages nine priority sectors in addition to investment and innovation. Overall, the program is functioning well and includes a strong team of CBS and LES. The multi- country and virtual sector teams coordinate and lead their sectors *** and the investment team is considered a centre of excellence *** on a more structured basis concerning planning, implementation and performance measurement.
The Consular program is operating very efficiently as a country-wide network. Personnel in Berlin, Munich and Dusseldorf communicate frequently to address operational matters. The DMCO involves all staff in consular meetings and organizes a yearly consular conference. Outreach activities take into account the entire country. The workload in the program is manageable and the service is in line with established standards. Some of the program's***, however, are not fully implemented or are absent.
Overall, the Common Services program is *** managed and functioning effectively with a knowledgeable team operating under an experienced MCO. The MCO's management style is ***, and he has been *** proactive in terms of reviewing procedures, strengthening governance and establishing policies. Nevertheless, policies and procedures require further development and should be available to all staff. Attention to planning will be important in adapting service standards and procedures in keeping with DRAP and in preparing to operate as a Common Service Delivery Point (CSDP) for finance.
A total of 49 recommendations are raised in the report, 46 are addressed to the mission and three are addressed to headquarters. Management has responded to each recommendation indicating action already taken or decisions made, as well as future action. Of the 49 recommendations, management has stated that 23 have been implemented. For each of the remaining 26 recommendations, management has indicated the initiatives in progress or the intended future action.
1 Mission Management
1.1.1 The embassy in Berlin is a large mission with 25 Canada-based Staff (CBS) and 56 Locally Engaged Staff (LES). It is responsible for departmental program delivery in Germany and manages a hub-and-spoke relationship with the two consulates in Munich and Dusseldorf. The missions incorporate representation from four federal departments and agencies, a Crown Corporation and two provinces.
1.1.2 The embassy is led by an EX-05 Head of Mission (HOM), in an EX-04 position, who is supported by an EX-03 Deputy HOM (DHOM). Together, they are responsible for mission operations and oversee operational and capital budgets of approximately $3.9 million and $209,000 respectively. The mission manages a property portfolio that includes: one Crown- owned chancery, two Crown-leased consulate offices, one official residence (OR), as well as 6 Crown-owned and 20 Crown-leased staff quarters (SQs). The mission is transitioning to the private leasing model; two private leases have already been signed by incoming CBS.
1.1.3 Germany's current geostrategic importance reflects its status as a G-8 nation, the world's fourth largest economy and its third largest exporter. Chancellor Merkel is widely recognized as Europe's most influential leader, and Germany's role in managing the European debt crisis is crucial to the region's financial stability, carrying political and economic implications that extend worldwide. Germany plays an active and productive role in a wide variety of international fora, ranging from serving on the United Nation's Security Council to observing at the Arctic Council and Organization of American States.
1.1.4 Canada-Germany bilateral relations are underpinned by strong commercial relations, defence cooperation, including through NATO, and a shared commitment to multilateralism and good governance. Germany is of prime strategic importance to Canada and our international objectives. Its support is considered essential to advancing our priorities in Europe, including the ***. High-level bilateral visits between Canada and Germany provide for ongoing discussion on key regional and international priorities as well as contribute to G-8 and G-20 policy considerations.
1.1.5 In April 2012, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) announced the closure of its program in Berlin, resulting in the deletion of 17 LES positions. Over the last two months, DFAIT also identified an additional seven positions for deletion at the embassy as a part of the deficit reduction action plan (DRAP). Combined, the cuts represent a loss of over 30% of the mission's locally engaged workforce, which has had a significant impact on morale.
1.2 Mission Management
|Key Mission Management Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|The mission's strategic objectives are consistent with Government and DFAIT priorities and guide staff performance measurement objectives.||X|
|The Committee on Mission Management (CMM) is an effective forum to review and make decisions on mission policies and management issues.||X|
|The Locally Engaged Staff Management Consultation Board (LESMCB) is representative of mission programs and employee levels and is utilized by both LES and mission management to facilitate dialogue.||X|
|Mission committees are meeting regularly and effectively discharging their governance responsibilities.||X|
|Mission management ensures that employees remain informed of key priorities and common services policy decisions.||X|
|Canadian public service values and ethics are promoted and reinforced, and employees are aware of available support resources (values and ethics, staff relations, etc.).||X|
1.2.1 Overall, the mission is well managed and serves as an effective platform for the promotion of Canadian interests with Germany, an influential and like-minded partner. The mission's objectives are aligned with DFAIT and Government of Canada priorities and include a wide scope of high priority bilateral, regional and international issues.
1.2.2 The HOM chairs a weekly Forward Planning meeting to establish operational priorities and manage emerging issues. He is a fluent German speaker who leverages his position and network for effective representation at a senior level. The HOM's focus on substantive issues is complemented by the DHOM's leadership on mission management and governance. The DHOM supervises all of the mission's program managers (PMs) and chairs the Committee on Mission Management (CMM).
1.2.3 The Forward Planning and CMM meetings are useful forums for information sharing and decision making on mission policies. The recent inclusion of the consulates and their co-located partners in the CMM is a positive initiative that increases overall transparency and the effectiveness of communication.
1.2.4 Top-down communication from mission management is generally good. PMs transmit information from management meetings to their staff, and the HOM and DHOM are also available and accessible. However, minutes are not taken at the Forward Planning meeting and those kept at CMM are not always distributed beyond program managers.
1.2.5 When warranted, the HOM or DHOM hold town hall meetings with all staff to convey important information, although it was noted that these have become less frequent than they once were. In implementing the DRAP cuts, the mission held town halls, question and answer sessions and offered individual meetings with the HOM or DHOM. These initiatives were supplemented by efforts on the part of program managers to speak with affected staff and offer support.
1.2.6 Mission morale is difficult to gauge at present and varies among the programs. In general, the DRAP measures have created significant concerns with respect to job security. Some employees also see transformative business practices as potentially leading to further layoffs down the road. Over the coming months, it will be important that mission management maintains strong internal communication and openly addresses questions and concerns. As well, the inclusion of all staff in decision-making and change-management processes will be a meaningful element in adapting to the current reality and rebuilding morale.
1.2.7 LES at both the embassy and the consulates understand the mandate of the Locally Engaged Staff Management Consultation Board (LESMCB) and receive meeting minutes. As a good practice, once a year the HOM chairs the meeting in place of the DHOM, allowing the LES to present their views to both of the mission's key leaders. At present, the LES representation is limited to employees from the embassy and mostly from the Common Services program. The board would ideally be composed of a more diversified LES membership.
1.2.8 Although some of the issues addressed by the LESMCB are complex, management has generally been supportive in working with LES towards solutions. The LES did, however, observe that maintaining momentum can sometimes be hampered by turnover in CBS. The board members identified the following current and recent areas of interest: flexible work arrangements; mobility options - such as temporary duties at other European missions; double taxation for Canadian LES; and the Total Compensation Review. As well, LES conveyed clearly their concerns on the use of a reverse order of merit process to implement the DRAP cuts. In this regard, they also raised the lack of LES involvement in determining the process.
1.3 Whole of Government
|Key Whole of Government Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Mechanisms are in place to ensure a whole-of-government approach is taken for mission and program planning.||X|
|Mission and program plans are implemented in a coordinated manner to ensure policy coherence and effectively leverage the Canadian presence.||X|
|Partner departments contribute to the overall effective governance of the mission and its operations.||X|
|Common services are provided in line with the memorandum of understanding and any issues are addressed at CMM.||X|
1.3.1 Partner programs present at the embassy in Berlin include: ***, the Department of National Defence (DND); the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA); and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). The provinces of Alberta and Ontario are co-located with the consulate in Munich and Export Development Canada (EDC) and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada are represented at the consulate in Dusseldorf. Quebec maintains offices in Berlin and Munich but is not co-located with the missions.
1.3.2 The missions in Germany take a pragmatic and pro-active approach to whole-of- government program delivery. The HOM, DHOM and Heads of Post (in Munich and Dusseldorf) leverage their positions and resources to assist partners in achieving their objectives. Partners are also incorporated into mission governance structures. They indicated overall satisfaction with the support and services provided by the mission.
1.3.3 There was, however, an expression of interest from within DFAIT and partner programs for more discussion at the mission on medium-term strategic issues. Addressing this would benefit the coordination of priorities, cross-program working relationships and whole-of- government planning. Additional coordination across programs would assist the Public Affairs program to fulfill a strategic advocacy role and would also help clarify responsibilities on issues addressed by multiple programs (e.g. economic issues).
1.3.4 The Mission Planning and Reporting (MPR) document should more clearly present partners' interests - including those of the provinces. Doing so would help DFAIT PMs, especially the Heads of Post at the consulates, to better calibrate support to partners in alignment with common interests. This is particularly important in Munich where the region is visited frequently by high-level provincial representatives.
1.3.5 A concern was raised by a co-locator regarding a potential decrease in services related to DRAP-related initiatives, without a commensurate decrease in fees. While only raised by one party, the perspective could be shared more broadly by partners and efforts should be made to reinforce communication and dialogue with partners on current and upcoming changes. It will also be important to ensure that partners and co-locators inform their representatives abroad on the results of discussions taking place at Headquarters regarding services in the field.
1.4 Emergency Preparedness
|Key Emergency Preparedness Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|The mission emergency plan (MEP) is up to date.||X|
|An emergency response team (ERT) has been identified and members are aware of their roles and responsibilities.||X|
|The MEP is tested regularly through the conduct of exercises and simulations.||X|
|The mission has identified an alternate command post and the appropriate secondary communications systems are in place and tested regularly.||X|
|Consultation occurs with like-minded and neighbouring Canadian missions regarding emergency planning.||X|
1.4.1 The mission has undertaken the necessary planning to prepare for an emergency scenario. The mission emergency plan (MEP) is up to date and an emergency response team (ERT) has been identified. As well, the mission already has good contacts with like-minded and Canadian missions on consular and security issues that could also be leveraged for emergency planning.
1.4.2 Mission management has, however, acknowledged that it needs to take further steps in order to be fully prepared for an emergency scenario. For example, management conveyed its intention to*** . A full meeting of all members of the emergency response team (ERT) should also be organized to ensure that each member understands his or her role and responsibilities. After doing so, the MEP should be tested through exercises and simulations, which would reinforce the planning that is already in place.
1.5 Official Languages
|Key Official Languages Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|The Official Languages Act is respected and promoted by mission management.||X|
|Mission signage is provided in both English and French and a bilingual Official Languages Co-ordinator has been appointed.||X|
|The mission has sufficient capacity to communicate with and provide services to the public, both orally and in writing, in both official languages.||X|
1.5.1 The DHOM serves as the Official Languages Co-ordinator, providing high-level support for the promotion of official languages at the mission. Many of the LES speak both English and French, in addition to German, even if it is not required for their position. Official signage is bilingual or trilingual, and the mission has the capacity to provide services to the public in the official language of their choice.
1.6 Management Controls
|Key Management Control Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Security policies and regulations are respected and promoted.||X|
|The quarterly reconciliation of passport inventory is properly completed and certified.||X|
|Program managers are provided regular financial/budget updates to facilitate effective management and decision making.||X|
|A coordinated approach is taken with regards to training and a budget has been established.||X|
|Bank reconciliations are properly reviewed and signed-off on a monthly basis.||X|
|Mission hospitality guidelines are appropriate and reviewed annually by CMM.||X|
|Hospitality activities are properly documented, demonstrate value-for-money and align with mission objectives.||X|
|Mechanisms are in place to monitor the completion of employees' performance evaluations.||X|
|The Honorary Consul (HonCon) has an up-to-date mandate letter and performance is reviewed annually.||X|
1.6.1 Overall, key management controls are in place and operating effectively. The mission is very proactive in identifying training opportunities. It consults other missions when establishing its training plans to look for regional synergies, and a dedicated training budget has been established. PMPs are in place across all programs with a 90% completion rate. One concern, however, is that the use of the PMPs as a component of the reverse order of merit process may lead some employees to be less open to constructive feedback through formal performance management processes.
1.6.3 The mission's reporting on hospitality activities should be enhanced to provide consistent high-quality information on hospitality activities. The documentation reviewed did not, in all cases, sufficiently outline the activity's intended purpose and its full value. The recently published guide to hospitality should provide the mission with further guidance on how to leverage funds and document activities.
1.7 The Consulates in Munich and Dusseldorf
1.7.1 The consulates are small posts; Munich consists of 3 CBS and 8.5 LES and Dusseldorf 2 CBS and 8.5 LES. Each is led by a Head of Post, an EX-01 in Munich and an FS-04 in Dusseldorf, who reports directly to the DHOM in Berlin. The Provinces of Ontario (one CBS and one LES position) and Alberta (currently one LES position) are co-located with the consulate in Munich. Export Development Canada has two LES positions in Dusseldorf. The consulates deliver their programs in concert with the embassy through a hub-and-spoke relationship.
1.7.2 Overall, the consulates provide significant value and reach for the DFAIT programs as well as important infrastructure and leadership for our co-located partners. This regional presence is crucial to the Commercial Economic (CE) program given Germany's decentralized economy. The consulates hold Germany-wide leadership on sectors and are producing good results for Canadian clients in the private sector. Furthermore, maintaining a regional consular presence is also beneficial considering the high number of Canadians visiting or passing through the country and the diffuse nature of the local population of Canadian citizens. For example, the consulate in Dusseldorf has consular responsibility for Frankfurt airport - Europe's third largest air hub. Further details specific to the programs are provided under their respective sections of the report.
1.7.3 Considering that the consulates share program responsibilities on a national basis, effective communication and coordination among the missions is vital. The CE program has the greatest number of resources at both of the consulates and is the main driver of regional representation. Coordination and activity planning across the Germany CE program is effective at the officer level, drawing on the experience of LES. However, there is a need for more structured communication and management from Berlin. For example, the strategy portion of the CE plan is drafted in Berlin, but there is room for more formal input from the consulates. As well, while the CE program's inter-post meeting serves a variety of program interests, it could focus more on core components of the program, including its strategy.
1.7.4 While there are no positions at the consulates that are fully dedicated to the FPDS program, at times, the consulates provide significant support to FPDS objectives, such as high- level visits. Considering this, there is insufficient communication and planning among the consulates and the embassy on FPDS issues. *** to ensure that their activities are in line with the mission's strategic priorities and that the embassy is providing the appropriate level of coordination and support.
1.7.5 On the other hand, the embassy does provide effective support for the delivery of the Common Services and Consular programs at the consulates. The consular officers are delivering *** service to clients and coordinate *** with Berlin on complex cases. An agreement between the embassy and the consulates clearly outlines roles and responsibilities for the Consular program. The development of a similar tool to outline expectations on the other programs would be highly beneficial.
1.7.6 The management structures of the two consulates are similar in nature, with the primary difference being the level of the head of post; EX-01 in Munich and FS-04 in Dusseldorf. Given the responsibilities of the positions, the rationale for the differing levels is not fully clear. As the missions are almost exclusively CE focussed, there may be merit in reassessing the allocation of ***.
1.7.7 The incumbent Heads of Post did not receive any form of HOM training ahead of assuming their roles at the consulates. Considering the broad mandate and responsibilities of the position to manage all mission operations, enhanced training should be provided over and above that currently provided on general program management. The Heads of Post should also be included in regional HOM meetings.
1.7.8 The FS-01 positions at each consulate are the notional second in command to the Head of Post. The officers also serve as Trade Commissioners (TCs) and Mission Security Officers (MSOs), in addition to holding responsibility for supervising LES who work in the Consular and Common Services programs. ***.
1.7.9 At present, the consulate in Munich has a flat organizational structure with six of eight positions reporting directly to the Head of Post. Consideration should be given to adjusting the reporting structure to increase efficiency, improve support for the Head of Post and allow the Head of Post to concentrate on higher-level issues.
1.7.10 The consulate in Munich plans and primarily delivers the CE program in the automotive, information and communication technologies (ICT) and consumer goods sectors for all of Germany. Planning processes and coordination are effective at the officer level. For example, the automotive virtual sector team, incorporating the lead in Munich as well as the investment and innovation officers based in Berlin, is a prime example of effective cross-post coordination.
1.7.11 While functioning well at an officer level, the consulate would benefit from more structured communication ***. In addressing these elements at the consulate, additional coordination and managerial support from Berlin would also help ***.
1.7.12 Overall, the consulate in Dusseldorf is operating effectively under an experienced FS-04 officer. Communications are good, morale is positive and team work is evident when required. The staff are competent and work largely independently given their defined roles and responsibilities. Dusseldorf plans and primarily delivers the CE program in the agri-food, life sciences, clean technology and forestry sectors for all of Germany. Planning processes and coordination are effective at the officer level, drawing on the experience of local staff and the mission's involvement in multi-country and virtual sector teams.
Recommendations to the Mission
1.8.1 Minutes from the Forward Planning and CMM meetings should be distributed to all staff to enhance overall transparency and awareness of priorities and policy decisions.
1.8.2 The mission should consider implementing a mechanism whereby DFAIT programs and partner representatives are able to engage in discussions on medium-term strategic issues. This should serve to enhance collaboration and coordination of activities and programming at an operational level.
1.8.3 The mission should take the necessary steps to ensure it would be ready for an emergency scenario by:
- Organizing a meeting of all members of the emergency response team (ERT) and clarifying the roles and responsibilities of all members; and
- Testing the MEP through exercises and simulations.
1.8.4 Hospitality activities should be supported by documentation that outlines the purpose of the event, links it to mission priorities, evaluates its value-for-money and identifies any follow up that was taken or is required.
1.8.5 The mission, in consultation with the consulates, should establish an agreement which outlines roles and responsibilities for the Common Services, CE and FPDS programs.
1.8.6 The mission should more fully incorporate the consulates into its program planning processes, and the DHOM should ensure effective ongoing support and coordination on program implementation.
1.8.7 The mission, in consultation with the Europe and Eurasia Bureau (GUD), should consider the redeployment of STC resources within Germany to balance Head of Post levels at the consulates ***.
1.8.8 The mission, in consultation with Headquarters, should prepare a business case for the ***.
Recommendations to Headquarters
1.8.9 The Europe and Eurasia Bureau (GUD) should consider the inclusion of the Heads of Post in regional HOM meetings.
1.8.10 The Assignments and Executive Management Bureau (HFD) should ensure that the Heads of Post at the consulates are provided with HOM training, reflective of their overall responsibility for mission operations.
Mission Actions and Timeframes
1.8.1 The mission has begun to circulate approved CMM minutes to all staff as well as selected headquarters addressees. For Forward Planning, minutes are not kept. Participants are encouraged to (and do) download a summary of discussions to their staff in subsequent section meetings. The embassy calendar is regularly updated and available to all staff on Infobank; it is also now circulated to all staff on a weekly basis. Implemented October 2012.
1.8.2 The mission has established MPR Commitment Coordination Committees to provide for direct linkages between the five MPR Commitments and the day-to-day work of the Germany missions. Each of the five Committees (one per Commitment) is chaired by a member of the CMM with an appropriate composition of CBS/LES, embassy/consulates, and DFAIT/partner departments. The committees are responsible for coordinating policy and programming in support of these priorities at an operational level, and the chairs have been tasked by the CMM to provide an update on a regular (at least quarterly) basis. Implemented September 2012.
1.8.3 A meeting with members of the Emergency Response Team to outline key responsibilities has been held (Sept 2012), and a table-top exercise to test the Mission Emergency Plan will be organized by the end of December 2012.***. In progress for January 2013.
1.8.4 The Official Hospitality Outside Canada (OHOC) policy has been circulated to all staff and discussed at a meeting of the CMM. Best practices, such as attaching relevant supporting documentation to hospitality claims, are encouraged. Implemented September 2012.
1.8.5 Agreements with the consulates in Munich and Dusseldorf, as well as the Honorary Consul in Stuttgart, are currently in development. We expect to have these completed by the end of the year and plan to keep them evergreen. In progress for January 2013.
1.8.6 In addition to membership from consulates in the MPR committees, as per 1.8.2, and the agreement between the Germany missions on roles/responsibilities, as per 1.8.5, we will establish a twice-quarterly DFAIT program manager meeting which will review policy and program implementation issues of particular relevance. We expect this will improve cross-program coordination and policy collaboration and will review experiences towards the end of the fiscal year. In progress for October 2012.
1.8.7 The mission held discussions with the Europe and Eurasia Bureau as well as the Assistant Deputy Minister for Global Issues, Strategic Policy and Europe on the Head of Post positions at the consulates ***. It was decided that the current classification levels appropriately reflect the reality of the management responsibilities inherent to the positions.***. Implemented. September 2012.
1.8.8 This mission agrees that an ***. However, we believe that this is not an issue isolated to the Germany missions, but rather a global challenge. It is difficult for FS-01 positions abroad to be filled at-level, given the standard career progression of junior officers will in most cases see them reach FS-02 prior to being sent on posting. While we believe these are excellent first-posting positions that allow an officer to gain a wide range of experience, *** should be undertaken in the context of a global review and not by the Germany missions in isolation. In light of this, we have concluded that it is not necessary to prepare a business case for these positions. Implemented September 2012.
Headquarters Actions and Timeframes
1.8.9 In preparation for the next regional HOM meeting, the Europe and Eurasia Bureau (GUD) will consider options for including Heads of Post through the use of video- conferencing facilities in both consulates. In progress for 2013.
1.8.10 HFD will ensure that incoming Heads of Post at the consulates in Germany (and other similar posts, when and if deemed necessary) be invited to attend relevant portions of the HOM training sessions. In these cases, this would be for the 2014 (Dusseldorf) and 2016 (Munich) rotations. Implemented October 2012.
2 Foreign Policy and Diplomacy Service (FPDS)
2.1.1 The FPDS program in Germany is divided into three sections; Political; Economic; and Public, Cultural and Academic Affairs (herein after referred to as Public Affairs). Each group is led by a program manager who reports directly to the DHOM. Collectively, the three sections comprise 5.5 CBS and 11.5 LES positions.
2.1.2 The Political section is headed by an FS-03, acting EX-01 Political Counsellor, and supported by three officers (an FS-03 and two LE-07s) and two half-time assistants (an AS-01 and a LE-05). The FS-03, acting FS-04, Economic Counsellor is supported by only one LE-07 officer. The Public Affairs section is headed by an FS-03, acting EX-01, and supported by five officers (an FS-03, an LE-08 and three LE-07s) and four LE-05 assistants. These configurations take into account resource changes as a result of DRAP, which involved the deletion of one LE- 07 position in Public Affairs and an LE-05 assistant in the Economic section.
2.1.3 The following table summarizes the financial resources available to each section.
|Budget 2011-2012||Political||Economic||Public Affairs||Total|
|1 The Post Initiative Fund (PIF) budget is managed by Public Affairs but allocated to other programs based on projects and priorities.|
|Operations||$ 24,604||$ 9,300||$ 111,016||$ 144,920|
|Total||$ 50,871||$ 24,064||$ 310,674||$ 385,609|
2.1.4 The program works to advance Canada-Germany bilateral relations, as well as cover relevant German domestic developments and local views on EU political affairs. The Political section concentrates on reporting, advocacy and outreach activities that are focussed on the Arctic, G8 issues, human rights, democracy, rule of law, peace and security and immigration and integration. The Economic section analyses and reports on economic, financial, energy and environmental policy issues; undertakes advocacy to further Canadian trade policy objectives and***; and delivers trade and market-access demarches. The Public Affairs section develops and implements strategies on media management, culture and academic relations; undertakes Canadian education marketing and coordinates the International Experience Canada Program to help German youth visit and work in Canada; and promotes and leverages Canadian culture and cultural industries in Germany in the areas of film, music, dance, theater, literature, visual arts and new media.
2.2 Planning and Program Management
|Key FPDS Program Management Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|FPDS plans are aligned with the priorities and objectives outlined in the mission plan and informed by departmental and geographic bureau guidance and objectives.||X|
|FPDS plans outline intended outcomes and results are measurable.||X|
|Internal communications within the program effectively support program delivery.||X|
2.2.1 The FPDS sections function as separate entities but are implementing their own activities in an effective manner. The program has a strong workforce of long-serving, dedicated and qualified local staff. Coordination on common issues, activities and events occurs at the officer level between the sections and with other mission programs. However, whereas each section has regular staff meetings for information sharing, there are no formal management meetings for the three section heads to meet together with the DHOM. As well, there are no formal bilateral meetings between the DHOM and individual section heads.
2.2.2 Program planning takes place at the section level. Each section has independently developed planning mechanisms based on their operations and resources. While these tools help the sections to achieve their own objectives, there is a lack of coherence in the priorities across the program. For example, the economic and political sections plan based on a cross- section of MPR objectives (Canada-EU economic engagement, the Arctic, bilateral engagement on peace and security, etc.), whereas Public Affair's plans have a looser connection to the MPR and are largely driven by cultural and academic events that support general advocacy.
2.2.3 To ensure consistency and provide a base for monitoring and review, a high-level operational FPDS plan should be developed and formalized. Doing so would operationalize objectives by articulating strategies for relevant MPR objectives and outline how each section contributes to their advancement. As well, it would more proactively identify opportunities for collaboration as well as ensure that the program has a shared understanding of priorities, expected results, outputs and performance indicators. Within this framework, lead responsibility for key files could be validated and provide management with assurance that workloads and expectations are evenly balanced. Involvement of the consulates in discussions would also improve overall planning and the understanding of FPDS objectives in the regions.
2.2.4 The development of the plan would provide staff and section managers the opportunity to share perspectives on priorities and opportunities to improve performance measurement. For example, there may be opportunities for the Public Affairs section to take a more active role in monitoring and measuring the impacts of mission activities in relation to core MPR priorities.
2.2.5 Morale and motivation in the Public Affairs section was low at the time of the inspection and attributed to both the implementation of DRAP initiatives and the ***.
|Key FPDS Implementation Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|The program facilitates a mission-wide coordinated approach to advocacy and common messaging.||X|
|Program reporting is in-line with mission and government objectives, timely and relevant.||X|
|Activities and initiatives are aligned with the mission's key priorities and with the principles of the New Way Forward FPDS Renewal initiative.||X|
|Relations with other mission programs facilitate program delivery (e.g. public affairs).||X|
|The program develops and maintains a contact base that meets programs needs and objectives.||X|
2.3.1 The majority of FPDS activities and results are well aligned with government priorities, with a continuing need to reorient public affairs activities away from traditional events and activities (e.g. culture). The development of the FPDS plan will bring activities into alignment, but this will need to be supported by an advocacy strategy to coordinate messaging across all programs. This would include a closer examination of legacy cultural and academic activities and associated resources in keeping with the New Way Forward. Input will be required from all programs and the consulates to identify advocacy objectives, the target audiences, priority activities as well as lead and support responsibilities. This will further facilitate coordination of common interests and ensure that key mission staff are aware of Government of Canada advocacy priorities and messaging.
2.3.2 Program reporting is considered to be strong, building on the strengths of CBS and LES officers. The Economic section, in particular, has been active and instrumental in ensuring that key clients and partners in Canada are informed of local developments related to the European debt crisis. At times, reporting conducted by the CE program overlaps with areas that are generally led by the Economic section. While not uncommon in many missions, more communication and consultation on reporting would ensure that roles are clear and that reports reflect a balanced mission perspective. The Economic section in Berlin is not, at present, consistently consulted on economic reporting emanating from the CE program. This has led to the duplication of effort between sections and creates the risk that the mission could provide inconsistent interpretation on issues.
2.3.3 The FPDS program utilizes a contact management system to organize key contacts and record interactions. The system was developed in Berlin and is meeting the needs of the program. The mission's contact base is appropriate and staff are able to secure access to officials when required. However, certain individuals felt that the mission placed too much reliance on its existing networks. It would be worthwhile to address network building as an element of the FPDS plan and advocacy strategy.
2.3.4 The classifications of LES officers across the program are at lower levels than normally found in FDPS programs, particularly at larger missions undertaking complex program delivery. There are no LE-09 positions and only one LE-08, whereas there are six LE-07s. Typically, in medium-sized and large programs, key LES who are doing higher-level work are in LE-09 positions. ***.
2.4 Performance Measurement
|Key FPDS Performance Measurement Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|The program has an established performance measurement system in place to monitor activities towards the achievement of objectives.||X|
|The program assesses performance against strategies / objectives and plans, and provides a high-level assessment of performance through the MPR system at the end of the fiscal year.||X|
|Hospitality diaries demonstrate value-for-money and alignment with priorities.||X|
2.4.1 The program measures performance in various ways. These include reporting on the events and activities that the sections organize or attend and monitoring the number of reports produced. The Public Affairs section has developed detailed systems to track the projects they have undertaken and their related costs. For many activities, outputs are captured, such as the number of visits to the chancery's multimedia information centre (the Marshall McLuhan Salon), the number of Germans applying to travel to Canada under youth mobility programs etc.
2.4.2 While identifying program outputs is important, more effort is required to establish measurement criteria that will provide information on results and validate progress made towards achieving objectives. As mentioned per the development of higher level plans, performance criteria should be linked to the advocacy strategy and MPR planning objectives. Staff should input to and participate in the development of performance criteria and the evaluation of results.
Recommendations to the Mission
2.5.1 High-level plans should be developed that articulate strategies, related activities, resources, performance indicators and expected results for each FPDS objective.
2.5.2 The DHOM should implement regular FPDS management meetings and individual bilateral meeting with section heads.
2.5.3 An advocacy strategy that includes targeted network building should be developed with the involvement of all mission programs and the consulates.
2.5.4 Public Affairs activities should be assessed and aligned, using the New Way Forward criteria, to the mission advocacy strategy.
2.5.5 The mission should review and clarify economic reporting responsibilities between the Economic section and the CE program.
2.5.6 The job descriptions of the FPDS LES officer positions should be reviewed to ensure they are consistent with the work currently undertaken. ***.
2.5.7 Communication and team-building initiatives should be introduced into the Public Affairs section.
Mission Actions and Timeframes
2.5.1 Flowing from the annual MPR exercise, FPDS program managers will work with common tools to facilitate strategic planning for FPDS objectives. This will be undertaken in consultation with other programs and the consulates, as appropriate. In progress for May 2013.
2.5.2 In order to support effective implementation of FPDS strategies, the head of the Political section has assumed responsibility for coordinating regular FPDS management meetings. Implemented September 2012.
2.5.3 The Public Affairs section has been tasked with developing an integrated advocacy strategy for the embassy and consulates. The strategy will be based on consultations within the embassy, the consulates and the relevant headquarters groups. The goal of the strategy will be to develop an agreed approach to advocacy as an integrated embassy/consulate function, with establishment of an advocacy tool box, multi- disciplinary teams as well as an effective performance measurement system. In progress for February 2013.
2.5.4 The head of the Public Affairs section has initiated a process of internal section and wider consultations for the purpose of developing a public affairs mission statement and strategy more clearly linking all public affairs business lines to Government of Canada priorities and to the new integrated advocacy strategy referred to in 2.5.3. In progress for February 2013.
2.5.5 The managers of the FPDS Economic section and the CE program have begun to develop a clear list of reporting responsibilities and will continue to work on enhancing consultation and collaboration on areas of shared interest. Implemented September 2012.
2.5.6 The FPDS LES officer job descriptions were reviewed and updated in the context of a mission-wide exercise in fiscal year 2011-12. It is recognized that the FPDS LES officers have responsibilities that use the full extent of the qualifications required for their current positions.***. In progress for January 2013.
2.5.7 The manager of the Public Affairs section is currently conducting a structured series of one-on-one and team meetings aimed at improving communication within the section. It is the intention that the full Public Affairs team will be engaged in and contribute to the integrated advocacy strategy referred to in 2.5.3 and the strategy linking public affairs business lines to the advocacy strategy, as outlined in 2.5.4. The embassy will support an application by the Public Affairs section for funding from the Organizational Learning Fund for a one-day team-building seminar, as it is agreed that this activity would be of great value to this section. In progress for April 2013.
3 Commercial Economic (CE)
3.1.1 The CE program in Germany has three delivery points: the embassy in Berlin and the consulates in Munich and Dusseldorf. There are four Senior Trade Commissioners (STCs) in the program. The EX-02 STC (EX-01 acting in an EX-02 position), based in Berlin, reports to the DHOM and holds overall responsibility for the German-wide CE program. The three other STCs manage the day-to-day operations of the CE teams in Berlin, Munich and Dusseldorf.
3.1.2 The team in Berlin is managed by an EX-01 STC who reports to the EX-02 STC. She is supported by eight Trade Commissioners (TCs) - an FS-03, an FS-01, four LE-09s and two LE- 07s - and 2.5 LE-05 Trade Commissioner Assistant (TCA) positions.
3.1.3 At the consulates, the Head of Post (an EX-01 in Munich and an FS-04 in Dusseldorf) are also the STCs for their respective CE teams and regions. Both are supported by three TCs (an FS-01, an LE-09 and an LE-07). In Munich there are 1.5 TCA positions (LE-05) and two TCA positions in Dusseldorf (0.5 LE-06 and 1.5 LE-05).
3.1.4 The program’s financial resources are provided below.
|Operations||$ 54,710||$ 8,086||$ 7,004||$ 69,800|
|Client Service Fund (CSF)||134,300||74,600||34,700||243,600|
|Investment Outcall Support||17,138||17,138|
|Private Sector Investment Champion Speaker Program||8,500||8,500|
|Total||$ 298,019||$ 127,331||$ 69,393||$ 494,743|
3.1.5 Germany has the fourth largest economy in the world, is the largest in the European Union and is the world's third largest exporter. It is Canada's seventh-largest export market and ranks fifth among Canada's suppliers. As an important trade and investment partner, Germany is the 10th largest source of foreign direct investment (FDI) in Canada and ranked 13th, in 2010, for Canadian direct investment abroad (CDIA).
3.1.6 The CE program is focused on nine priority sectors and also places a significant amount of effort on investment and innovation. The priority sector and functional leads are divided between the missions as follows:
- Berlin: investment, innovation, aerospace, cleantech and manufacturing technologies;
- Munich: automotive, consumer products and information and communications technologies (ICT); and
- Dusseldorf: agriculture, food and beverages, life sciences and mining.
3.1.7 The recent closure of the CIC program in Berlin and transfer of responsibilities to the mission in Vienna has created some challenges with respect to relationships with clients and local contacts. This could be particularly problematic for investment files, where representatives or workers commonly travel to Canada on short notice but may require visas. It will be important for the mission, and the department, to continue to work towards a system whereby the provision of visa services helps facilitate Canada's economic prosperity agenda.
3.2 Planning and Program Management
|Key CE Program Management Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Program objectives reflect departmental plans and priorities, including partner departments where applicable.||X|
|Performance targets are defined, clear and measurable.||X|
|Internal program communication effectively supports program delivery.||X|
3.2.1 The CE program in Germany is functioning well and benefits from a strong and dedicated team of CBS and LES officers. Strategic objectives have remained consistent over the last few years and officers take an active lead in assessing opportunities and setting objectives for their sectors. The CE management team in Germany is actively engaged in providing support and guidance to officers with respect to sector action plans and major activities. While operations are effective overall ***.
3.2.2 The consulates are well integrated with effective communication at the officer level, but operate independently from an overall program management perspective. With the exception of periodic inter-post meetings, there are no formal meetings held between the STCs (EX-02 and EX-01) in Berlin and the STCs at the consulates.***.
3.2.3 The annual planning process commences with the development of the strategy section of the CE plan. This is developed by the *** and circulated among CE staff in Germany for comment. A review of the previous year's strategy sections and discussions with headquarters functional groups noted that there had been only minor updates. In some cases, the information provided did not meet the expectations (e.g. the section entitled "Canadian Interests: Opportunities, Challenges and Risks"). The current information is predominantly focussed on macro-economic perspectives vis-à-vis the German economy. While important to address the key environmental factors affecting the strategy, a greater focus needs to be placed on business opportunities for Canadian clients, key challenges and risks, potential for foreign direct investment and any trade policy or market-access issues that must be consider by clients in their approach to the market.
3.2.4 The EX-02 STC assumes a high-level role, interacting with key clients and reporting on macro-economic policy and issues in relation to the impact on business and trade activities. As mentioned in the FPDS section of the report, at times these subjects overlap with reporting undertaken by the FPDS Economic section - but little to no coordination or consultation is occurring to ensure that leads are defined and perspectives represent those of the mission as a whole.
3.2.5 Day-to-day operations in Berlin are led by the EX-01 STC, encompassing general management, performance management, learning and training plans, etc. Formal and informal communication among officers is effective, supported by strong interpersonal relationships and a bi-weekly staff meeting. The staff meeting was, however, described as predominantly activity based, with other elements addressed only as needed. An interest was expressed by officers for the meeting to take on a more strategic dynamic, with agenda items set in advance and less focus on round-table updates.
3.2.6 As discussed and recommended on in mission management, there may be merit in exploring ***.
|Key CE Implementation Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Business plan objectives and those outlined in management's PMAs (Performance Management Agreement) /PMPs (Performance Management Program) appropriately cascade down into staff PMPs.||X|
|Activities and initiatives are aligned with the mission's key priorities.||X|
|TRIO use is monitored to ensure activities are reported appropriately and accurately reflect the work undertaken.||X|
|InfoCentre functions are assigned and facilitate program delivery.||X|
3.3.1 The CE program in Germany is achieving good results, benefits from strong sectorial and functional expertise and is providing value-added service to its clients. Officers develop action plans based on the CE plan objectives, which are consulted with colleagues across the network (within Germany, Europe, Headquarters, Canadian regional offices and partners). The action plans are then discussed with the respective STCs to validate the strategic direction and assess resource allocation for initiatives.
3.3.2 The CE team employs a prime-post system, whereby officers lead a sector for all of Germany. For example, the automotive sector is based out of Munich but is responsible for client service across all of Germany. Officers regularly liaise with their colleagues to plan and coordinate activities, as well as undertake joint outcall activities to cover key elements of files or client needs. This is a core element of program performance, ensuring that the integrative trade model is ingrained in day-to-day operations at the officer level.
3.3.3 The program has also been creative and flexible by teaming trade officers with investment and innovation specialists in Germany to provide comprehensive services in a number of priority sectors. In addition, the CE program developed a virtual sector team on automotive, led by the automotive TC in Munich and supported by the investment and innovation officers in Berlin. The automotive team's efforts were recognized through receiving a Deputy Ministers' Award of Excellence in Service Delivery in 2011.
3.3.4 Trade commissioners in Germany are active members in European multi-country sector teams (MCST), leading on life sciences and cleantech. The MCST leads in Germany are responsible for coordinating and leading their respective sectors in the planning of common initiatives.
3.3.5 It was noted that support and cooperation provided from Headquarters have been beneficial to officers on foreign direct investment, innovation and science and technology, cleantech and automotive sectors. Support for the life sciences and ICT sectors, however, has not been as strong. Challenges were noted with respect to continuity of lead officers and difficulty staying informed of major sector development.
3.3.6 The investment team in Berlin is known as a centre of excellence for the department in foreign direct investment support; officers are leveraged in and outside of Germany for their expertise. The approach taken by the team is based on a key client account model and consists of a core team of two officers that provide investment development services to German companies considering investing in Canada. They include the EX-02 STC and the HOM on outcalls when needed. From an investment development perspective, three sectors are identified as priorities: advanced manufacturing, automotive and renewable energy technologies. The investment team spends approximately 40% of their time on pro-active investment development and an equal amount of time providing service on investment leads and prospects initiated by potential investors or referrals from partners. An investment corporate outreach initiative in the CE plan identifies resources for investment outreach in both Canada and Germany.
3.3.7 TRIO is well used by officers in Germany. Officers find TRIO a useful tool to share current and reliable information with their colleagues in Germany and in Europe. The EX-01 STC in Berlin regularly monitors the use of TRIO by officers and ensures the records represent fairly the activities undertaken in Berlin. This monitoring practice is not, however, consistent across the consulates.
3.3.8 Officers in Berlin use TRIO for recording investment-related activities, including tracking outcalls, leads and prospects. To avoid the duplication of effort, they do not report through the Strategic Investment Intelligence System (SIIS). However, as a consequence of not using SIIS or otherwise reporting to the Investment Services Division (BIS), investment officers are expending a significant amount of time and energy to gather the required information for the annual Departmental Performance Report (DPR) exercise.
3.3.9 The innovation, science and technology (S&T) team in Germany consists of three officers, one of which is an FS-03 on secondment from the National Research Council. This position has traditionally been filled by an officer with a background in the sciences, given the strong nature of the Germany-Canada partnership and S&T agreement. The team focuses on promoting innovation-based business activities, as well as the commercialization and market share of high-value products and services. Over the past year, the innovation team was busy with major events to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Germany-Canada Agreement on S&T Cooperation, including a meeting of the presidents of the two countries' 15 most research- intensive universities (U15) which raised Canada's profile in the country.
3.3.10 Several market reports are available on the virtual trade commissioner (VTC) website, including agri-food, cleantech and life sciences. However, certain priorities are not represented, most notably innovation, automotive and ICT. As priority sectors, it would be valuable to consolidate existing and new information for clients to access on the VTC as needed.
3.3.11 An InfoCentre is in place for the program and works well. The InfoCentre is led by an assistant in Dusseldorf who is backed-up by colleagues in Berlin and Munich. One generic email address is available on the VTC website for all inquiries as a point of first contact. The InfoCentre assigns service requests to officers and follows up on an individual basis.
3.4 Performance Measurement
|Key CE Performance Measurement Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Tools and mechanisms are in place to measure and monitor performance of the program.||X|
|Program employees are involved in the performance measurement process.||X|
|Hospitality diaries are maintained in a fashion that demonstrates value-for-money and alignment with priorities.||X|
3.4.1 Performance is measured at the sector and functional level by individual officers throughout the year and results are displayed in the CE plan and through PMPs. To build awareness among headquarters stakeholders of German posts' combined achievements, the EX-02 STC writes an end-of-year report on the outcomes of the program by requesting results and success stories from CE officers in Germany. This report provides a good synopsis of results; however, while officers are asked for a rollup of qualitative results for the STC's summary, they should be more formally involved in the evaluation of the program's performance. More coaching and training between officers and management on performance management would be beneficial to the program and help initiate discussion on strategic planning for the following year.
3.4.2 Hospitality diaries were reviewed and the activities are aligned with priorities. It was noted that not all officers use hospitality funds with the rationale that the majority of interactions occur during meetings and that hospitality is often not required or local contacts often insist on paying. Officers should be encouraged to consider the use of hospitality as a strategic asset to expand and leverage networks.
Recommendations to the Mission
3.5.2 The CE program should add market reports on the VTC related to Germany's priority sectors.
3.5.3 A more consistent approach to monitoring the use of TRIO should be implemented across the three missions to ensure that TRIO is used appropriately and the information is accurate.
Mission Actions and Timeframes
3.5.1 ***. In progress for November 2012.
3.5.2 Eleven market reports are currently posted on the VTC. Reports on the automotive, ICT and science and technology sectors will be added. In progress for April 2013.
3.5.3 Managers from the three posts agree to monitor TRIO numbers in a manner to ensure consistent application and accuracy. Implemented October 2012.
4.1.1 The Consular program is managed by an experienced AS-05 DMCO under the general direction of the EX-01 MCO. The program is currently supported by a team of three LES: one LE-06 and two LE-05 positions. An LE-09 consular officer retired in December 2011 and the position has been cut in the context of DRAP. The work normally assumed by that position is now being performed by the LE-05s and the LE-06.***.
4.1.2 Consular services in Germany are also delivered from the consulates in Dusseldorf and Munich and by the Honorary Consul based in Stuttgart. A comprehensive MOU has been developed with the consulates in order to clearly establish roles and responsibilities for the delivery of the program with Berlin taking the leadership role.
4.1.3 The mission provides approximately 2,800 passport services and processes approximately 400 citizenship applications and 350 notarial requests yearly. There are 1,010 Canadian citizens in the Registration of Canadians Abroad (ROCA) database. The estimated number of Canadians in Germany at any given time is approximately 40,000.
4.2 Planning and Program Management
|Key Consular Program Management Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Mission consular plans and manuals are up to date.||X|
|Internal communications within the program effectively support program delivery.||X|
|The mission has ongoing dialogue with key local authorities to facilitate program delivery.||X|
|A warden network is in place and properly maintained.||N/A|
4.2.1 The Consular program is led by the DMCO, who also manages the human resources portfolio. His management style and *** involvement in operational issues is *** by members of the consular team. He has been described as***. The employees have up-to-date PMPs and meet with the DMCO twice a year to discuss their performance.
4.2.2 The Consular program is operating very efficiently as a country-wide network, with personnel in Berlin, Munich and Dusseldorf communicating on a frequent basis in order to resolve operational matters. The DMCO involves all staff in consular meetings and organizes a yearly consular conference in Berlin. Outreach activities take into account the entire country.
4.2.3 An annual plan is in place for the program, and roles and responsibilities have been clearly defined, documented and communicated. Consular personnel are competent, trilingual (French, English and German) and have been described as having a strong work ethic. Employees have the training and knowledge to perform a wide-range of duties and are capable of backing up one another in the case of absences.
4.2.4 The workload in the program is manageable and, following the recent departure of the LE-09, the level of service is now more in line with established standards. A reasonable amount of overtime was used last February and March while the volume of passport applications was at its peak.
4.2.5 The mission is working effectively with local contacts and like-minded missions, and German authorities are helpful in the management of consular cases. The Case Management Division (CNO) reports that the mission is performing well.
4.3 Client Service
|Key Consular Client Service Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Services are provided to Canadians in the official language of their choice.||X|
|Service standards, fee schedules and a copy of an official receipt are posted in public areas in both official languages.||X|
|Services are provided in line with established standards.||X|
|Client feedback is reviewed and corrective action is taken when warranted.||X|
4.3.1 The program is providing excellent service to all its clients and no complaints were received. Service standards are being met, even during the peak season for passport applications. Although all of the mission's consular staff are trilingual, *** in Stuttgart cannot provide the full range of services in French, and there is no formal protocol in place in the event a client makes such a request.
4.4 Internal Controls
|Key Consular Internal Control Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|A certified CBS signs-off on all passports.||X|
|Client documents and personal information are properly stored and secured.||X|
|Procedures and practices related to the collection of revenues are appropriate (e.g. segregation of duties, handling of cash, official receipts, record of fees received forms).||X|
|Revenues held in the consular section are kept to a minimum and are transferred to finance on a regular basis.||X|
|Upon receipt of new passport stock, two CBS verify the receipt of all assets, sign and return the transmittal note.||X|
|Passport stock is securely stored and the removal of assets is recorded on an inventory log and initialled by the CBS custodian and the employee receiving the asset.||X|
|Working inventories provided to staff are appropriate and controlled by a daily log (passports issued, spoiled, returned to safe storage).||X|
|Monthly and quarterly reconciliations of passport stock are properly completed and certified.||X|
|Official seals and stamps are properly inventoried, secured and access provided to designated staff only.||X|
4.4.1 While the program has a number of internal controls in place, some are***. The *** is accessible to all the consular staff,***.
4.4.3 Client files and passport information are being retained longer than recommended by Passport Canada. These should be reviewed and disposed of as per Passport Canada guidelines.
Recommendations to the Mission
4.5.1 The mission should consider the feasibility of a model in which processing backlogs could be distributed across the network of missions in Germany in order to maximize the use of resources.
4.5.2 The mission should consult with Passport Canada on the implementation of simplified passport renewal, to assess the impact on work processes.
4.5.3 The mission should develop a formal protocol to follow for consular services to be provided in French in Stuttgart.
4.5.4 The Consular program, with the assistance of the Finance section, needs to review the processes for the ***.
4.5.6 The mission should ensure that Government of Canada and departmental retention and disposition procedures and policies are followed for consular and passport files.
Mission Actions and Timeframes
4.5.1 Following the implementation of simplified passport renewals, the passport workload for all missions in Germany is expected to decrease. At the same time, arrangements will be made with ***. In progress for January 2013
4.5.2 Simplified renewal was implemented in Germany on September 3, 2012. The DMCO and MCO will monitor the impact of these new procedures over the coming months and follow up with Passport Canada, as appropriate. Implemented September 2012.
4.5.3 Those working at the office of the Honorary Consul in Stuttgart have been provided with the department's resource document listing key phrases in French for dealing with clients. A formal protocol has also been implemented whereby French-speaking clients will be directed to Munich or Berlin if Stuttgart is not able to provide the appropriate level of service. Implemented August 2012.
4.5.4 ***. Implemented September 2012.
4.5.5 ***. The mission also suggests that the inventory form generated by the Passport Management Program should be modified as it currently indicates that only one individual is required to complete the monthly inventory. Implemented September 2012.
4.5.6 Paper files have been reviewed to ensure that a minimum of information is being kept on hand. Procedures for citizenship files have been improved so that copies of applications will be destroyed 60 days following receipt of the new citizenship certificate from Canada. Implemented September 2012.
5 Common Services
5.1.1 The Common Services program is managed by an EX-01 MCO who is supported by a team of 6 CBS (two AS-05 DMCOs, two MPSS and two FSITPS) and 25 LES. The program serves 81 staff at the embassy in Berlin and has the lead for the delivery of common services to another 22 employees at the consulates in Munich and Dusseldorf.
5.1.2 As part of the DRAP process, four positions will be deleted from the program over the next seven months: the LE-08 LEITP; the LE-05 Common Service Coordinator; one Driver; and one Handyman. As a result, the program will have to review and realign roles and responsibilities. The assignment of residual tasks in the Property and IM-IT sections, in particular, should occur while the incumbents are still at the mission. Also as a part of DRAP, the mission will dispose of two official vehicles this fiscal year (one sedan and one maintenance van).
5.1.3 Effective April 2012, the private leasing model was expanded to include the missions located in Western Europe, including the three missions in Germany. Two private leases have already been signed at the mission and more will be established as the current Crown leases expire.
5.1.4 In September 2012, the program will be assuming a regional support role as a Common Service Delivery Point (CSDP) for finance, ultimately assuming transactional responsibility for 15 other missions. In the coming future, the program will need to hire new staff and prepare the Finance section to adapt to its new responsibilities.
5.2 Planning and Program Management
|Key Common Services Program Management Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|A Common Services Business Plan is in place and used to establish priorities and guide operations.||X|
|Common services policies and procedures are documented and communicated to management, staff and clients.||X|
|Internal communications within the program effectively support program delivery.||X|
|A mission HR plan has been developed and submitted to Headquarters.||X|
|A plan is in place for major acquisitions and is approved by CMM annually.||X|
|Hub and spoke relationships are governed by an agreement outlining the roles and responsibilities of each mission.||X|
5.2.1 Overall, the program is *** managed and functioning effectively with a knowledgeable team operating under the leadership of an experienced MCO. The MCO's management style is *** by staff;***. Furthermore, the MCO allows the two DMCOs sufficient latitude to manage their respective sections (Human Resources and Property) but is supportive and involved when necessary.
5.2.2 Since arriving, the MCO has been *** and implemented a number of good measures and practices over the last two years. He has reorganized the transactional workflow of the Finance section and provided guidance on its procedures, developed an occupational health and safety policy, updated hospitality guidelines and established ceiling rates, and introduced a policy on the use of public areas.
5.2.3 Overall guidance on operations and program objectives are set out in the Common Services Business Plan, which received positive feedback from both Headquarters and the Regional Service Centre for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (RSCEMA). As a next step, the program would benefit from developing operational work plans for each section. These plans should outline key initiatives that will advance the program's objectives as well as define lead responsibilities and expected timelines for completion.
5.2.4 Communications within the program are good. The MCO meets with the program's section heads every week to discuss issues and share information on activities. Although the meetings are not agenda-driven, records of key decisions are kept. These collective exchanges are supplemented by regular one-on-one meetings, which are held on a weekly basis with most section heads. Every three weeks the MCO hosts a more formal, agenda-driven meeting with all Common Services staff.
5.2.5 Some improvement is, however, required on the communication of the program's policies and procedures. While the mission intends to use the Wiki as the principal guide for both clients and service providers, the tool does not yet have sufficient content to effectively fulfill this role. The program should continue to develop and formalize policies and procedures and place them on the Wiki's common services portal.
5.2.6 The Property section has developed a comprehensive list of potential capital acquisitions for this fiscal year, totalling over €260,000. However, the current documentation does not demonstrate sufficient analysis or reflect the appropriate consultation with stakeholders. Planning for capital acquisitions should also be extended beyond the current fiscal year to permit for better budgeting for the future, particularly if in-year funding is an issue.
5.2.7 Although the delivery of most common services for the consulates has been centralized in Berlin, there is no formal arrangement to define the relationship. An MOU or Service-Level Agreement should be developed to clearly define the roles and responsibilities for the both embassy and the consulates and address associated expectations.
5.2.8 The MCO, in consultation with the RSCEMA, is guiding the implementation process for the mission to become a CSDP for finance. However, the mission was not able to demonstrate a clear plan to address the full range of preparations necessary to undertake this role (HR, training, structure/work organization, IT, etc.). Whereas detailed workflows exist to define future transactional roles and responsibilities, it is critical that Berlin confirms with the RSCEMA the key assumptions that are in place and clarify next the steps in preparing for these new responsibilities.
5.3 Client Service
|Key Common Services Client Service Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Service standards have been established and communicated to clients.||X|
|An efficient process in place for receiving, processing and monitoring work orders.||X|
|Services provided reflect fair and equitable allocation and access to common services for all mission programs.||X|
|A mechanism is in place to solicit and receive client feedback, and corrective action is taken when warranted.||X|
5.3.1 Overall, the program is providing a good level of service to clients. The service standards were updated in December 2011, and clients were made aware of the changes. Nonetheless, it will be important that the standards be reviewed considering recent changes to the program's resource levels.
5.3.2 As the mission positions itself to become a CSDP for 15 other missions in the region, it will be especially important that the program continues to develop, formalize and communicate its policies and procedures. Clear communications with clients on processes will help to avoid misunderstandings or unrealistic expectations.
5.3.3 While clients are able to provide comments on property services through ***, there is no mechanism to solicit and capture feedback for all areas of the program. A formal client feedback mechanism would allow the program to refine its processes and procedures in order to better serve clients.
5.4 Key Processes and Controls
Procurement and Expenditure Controls
|Key Procurement and Expenditure Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|A Contract Review Board (CRB) is in place and operating effectively with terms of reference.||X|
|Procurement and contracting procedures have been documented and communicated to all staff involved in the process.||X|
|Contracting files demonstrate compliance with policies and procedures.||X|
|Financial signing authorities are exercised by individuals who possess the appropriate delegation of authority.||X|
|The mission's bank reconciliations are reviewed and signed-off on a monthly basis.||X|
|The asset and liability report is reviewed on a monthly basis.||X|
|Reimbursement of HonCon operational expenses is based on an established agreement.||X|
|Travel and hospitality claim processes ensure that policies and guidelines are adhered to and that the completeness and accuracy of the claim is verified.||X|
|Vehicle logs and fuel purchases are verified against consumption (e.g. mileage/usage rates for vehicles and generators).||X|
|A percentage of costs for personal use of OR supplies is determined and regular reimbursements are made to the mission.||X|
|A process is in place to ensure that, where applicable, CBS reimburse the mission for any services of a personal nature received at their staff quarters (e.g. television, internet, telephone, etc.).||X|
5.4.1 The mission's approach to procurement and expenditure processes is generally good with a need to strengthen contracting procedures and ensure appropriate segregation of duties and oversight from CBS.
5.4.2 While the mission has a contract review board (CRB) that is chaired by the MCO and supported by terms of reference, it has yet to develop and document a formal contracting policy. The CRB, as well, requires some changes to improve its operations. At present, it meets virtually to review documentation at the initial stages of the contracting process ***.
5.4.3 A review of hospitality and travel claims revealed that the applicable policies and procedures are adhered to in most cases. However, there were cases where hospitality ceilings were exceeded without proper justification, receipts were missing and/or incomplete or claims were submitted for reimbursement with inadmissible expenses.
5.4.4 Appropriate vehicle logs are maintained, although no monthly reconciliation or verification of mileage or the purchase of fuel is undertaken using the vehicle operating and maintenance report. Even though a policy on official vehicles is contained in the service delivery standards document, the mission should consider developing a separate document that outlines restrictions and obligations and takes into account the local environment.
5.4.5 The mission notified the RSCEMA that it could act as an ***. To date, the mission has not received a response.
|Key Revenue Management Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Roles and responsibilities ensure adequate segregation of duties.||X|
|Official receipts are provided to clients at the time of payment and to internal staff when funds are transferred (i.e. from Consular to Finance).||X|
|Reconciliations of any funds transferred within the mission are conducted in the presence of two staff.||X|
|Revenues are deposited into the mission bank account daily or, if not cost effective, within a week of receipt, as per the Financial Administration Act: Receipt and Deposit of Public Money Regulations.||X|
5.4.6 The LE-07 Deputy Financial Management Officer (FMO) has been on leave for an extended period of time. As a result, the section's most *** has been acting in that position, and a LE-04 term position was staffed on an emergency basis to provide additional support. The absence of the Deputy FMO has, nonetheless, resulted in a lack of attention to certain management issues. For example, at present, there is no formal backup system in place, even for key tasks such as the payroll. Whereas staff understand their assigned roles and responsibilities, knowledge sharing hasn't occurred sufficiently to ensure that all core services could still be provided in the case of an unexpected absence.
Property and Key Asset Life Cycle Management
|Property and Key Asset Life Cycle Management Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|The chancery and official residence (OR) are well maintained and maintenance schedules are in place.||X|
|Annual inspections are conducted to assess the state of staff quarters (SQs) and input into maintenance and acquisition planning.||X|
|An inspection is conducted by new SQ occupants and a mission representative within 30 days of occupancy, after which occupancy agreements and distribution accounts are signed.||X|
|Records of assets located in the chancery, OR and SQs, as well as those in storage, are maintained on an ongoing basis and verified annually. Assets are appropriately safeguarded and controlled.||X|
|Employees formally sign out IT assets (mobility tools) and are advised of their accountabilities.||X|
|Disposals are appropriately authorized and follow departmental guidelines.||X|
5.4.8 The provision of external and internal signage was not included as part of the construction of the chancery in Berlin. As a result, there are no numbers on rooms or offices and many employees have devised their own means of identifying their office (e.g. posting their business card outside the door). This deficiency is evident and not in-keeping with an otherwise showcase mission. Professional signage should be procured. If this cannot be accomplished in the short-term, a temporary solution should be devised that would provide a consistent and professional look.
5.4.9 The mission currently leases its office space and pays for services and maintenance under an agreement with the company that constructed the "Canada House" complex. General maintenance for the chancery is performed by a commercial firm in accordance with the facilities management section of the mission's tenant agreement. Eventually, the Government of Canada will assume full ownership and management responsibility for the entire building complex, which includes the chancery, a small amount of commercial space and a block of residential units.
5.4.10 The official residence (OR), a modern house built in 2002, is well located and used extensively for representational events. The representational areas are well equipped, although furnishings in the main salon require updating and the main dining room chairs are in need of reupholstering. The family living areas are relatively modest in size. At the end of 2011, the Physical Resources Bureau (ARD) requested that the mission prepare a list of potential maintenance works for the OR; these were used to form the fiscal year 2012-13 maintenance plan (HVAC, foundation leaks, main kitchen upgrades and parquet flooring).
5.4.11 *** is used to receive maintenance requests. There are only a few open tickets and most requests are completed in a timely manner. The OR requests are not entered into this system as the OR does not have access to a Signet account. Requests from the OR should be entered into *** by a member of the staff so that they can be properly tracked and addressed.
5.4.12 Some time ago, the mission agreed to take part in a pilot project for a barcode inventory system. However, with the loss of resources as a result of DRAP, the mission is not certain if it will have the capacity to undertake this project. The mission should either organize itself appropriately to take part in the pilot or advise Headquarters that will be unable to do so at this time.
5.4.13 The handymen are provided with all tools and equipment required to undertake electrical, plumbing and general service tasks. An inventory of these items has been developed, although no custodial ownership has been established and ***. The inventories for the chancery, OR and SQs are all current.
5.4.14 The market for the disposal of surplus and used furnishings and equipment is fairly limited in Germany. The mission has been selling what they can, but at times assets are simply donated to charitable organizations. The mission will have a large amount of surplus furnishings to dispose of this fiscal year as the contents of six SQs will be deemed surplus due to private leasing. The mission should consider conducting a sale open to employees and other diplomatic missions. Approvals for disposals should be provided by the HOM or DHOM and not the MCO or DMCO, as has been occurring.
5.4.15 Surplus IT assets are also disposed of by the Property section. At times, this equipment is donated, although the mission has not been properly requesting authority to do so. The section should ensure that the Information Management and Technology Bureau (AID) is in agreement with any planned disposal of IT assets.
5.4.16 The mission currently leases warehouse space (about 500 m2) at an approximate cost of €36,000 per year. Plans are in place to dispose of the majority of these assets and to terminate the lease. Inventories have recently been developed for assets on hand, including new and used SQ furnishings and appliances, but no custodial ownership has been assigned.
5.4.17 The new private leasing model and adjusted rental ceilings for SQs were introduced in Germany at the beginning of the fiscal year. Although the transition has not been problematic, the mission continues to invest a significant amount of time in assisting incoming CBS in locating appropriate properties and negotiating leases as local legal and language issues are prevalent. To better prepare incoming staff, the program has developed a private leasing guide based on a tool provided by the mission in Vienna and the RSCEMA. Policies are also in place to address incidental expenses and additional equipment requirements that may be associated with private leases.
5.4.18 In order to ensure that the private leasing model is working effectively, the mission should document any challenges they are experiencing as well as identify additional cost savings that could be provided by other options (i.e. Crown leasing with commercial firms to keep rents low). It should be noted that a "finder's fee" of two month's rent is charged by realty agents to locate suitable accommodations.
Staffing and HR Controls
|Key Staffing and HR Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Staffing actions are conducted in-line with the Locally Engaged Staff and headquarters Workforce Programs Bureau (ALD) guidelines. Written records supporting the process are maintained and contain required documents and approvals.||X|
|Letters of Offer are signed by the appropriate authority and include the appropriate clauses (e.g. values and ethics, etc.).||X|
|New LES are provided with an information package on the working conditions, benefits and regulations pertaining to employment at the mission.||X|
|Employee and position files are complete, maintained separately and properly secured.||X|
|LES accrued leave and deductions are recorded and the related liabilities are monitored.||X|
5.4.19 The HR section benefits from staff that have an extensive background in the field and are dedicated and professional. However, their roles and responsibilities, while generally understood, are not clearly defined and communicated to staff and clients. There have been some instances where staff may have ***. The mission's staff are unaware of the headquarters resources available to them for dealing with conflict situations.
5.4.20 The HR section works closely with program managers to provide advice and guidance on staffing matters, assist with the development of assessment tools and organize competitions. While there are no formal procedures in place to guide staff or hiring managers, the section does provide hiring managers with a schedule via email outlining the general timeline for the staffing actions. This could be expanded and formalized to document the complete staffing process, serving as a guide for staff and clients in all three missions in Germany.
5.4.21 Arrival and departure guides have been developed for CBS, but there are no such guides or checklists to assist with the orientation of new LES employees. The current practice is for the HR officer or assistant to meet with employees and provide them with a copy of the LES Handbook/benefits information, values and ethics guidelines, mission procedures, etc. The program managers are responsible for orienting new employees and introducing them to the mission. While the current process is good, the development of a guide or checklist would be useful to ensure that all new employees are provided with consistent information.
5.4.22 The HR Assistant is the mission's Training Coordinator. She is *** engaged and proactive and has consulted missions in the region for best practices. Draft language and training policies have been developed. The Training Coordinator reviews learning plans from PMPs to identify common training needs. While an organizational learning plan is completed and submitted for some common training requirements, a mission-wide plan detailing all needs would assist the CMM and the programs to establish priorities and allocate training funds.
5.4.23 Separate position, employee, competition and classification files are maintained. Files are well documented and appropriately secured.
|Key IM-IT Criteria||Meets||Needs Improvement||Does Not Meet|
|Back-ups are performed routinely and tapes are stored appropriately in a secure location away from the primary use area.||X|
|Controls are in place to ensure the Network Acceptable Use Policy (NAUP) is respected (SIGNET and digital subscriber line (DSL) connections).||X|
5.4.24 Appropriate IM/IT back-ups are performed and sufficient controls are in place. As noted under Mission Management, following the identification of ***, the section will need to ensure that it is furnished with the appropriate equipment *** and that regular testing takes place.
5.4.25 In addition to serving the consulates and all of the mission's permanent staff, the IM-IT section also provides support for term and emergency employees and up to 12 interns that change regularly. Although it can take a considerable amount of time to set up computers and accounts for temporary employees, the programs that benefit from these resources do not fund the IM/IT support.
5.4.26 As part of DRAP, the LEITP position, which currently undertakes much of the support to non-permanent staff members, has been identified for deletion by January 2013. The CS-03 is developing a plan to ensure that as many of his duties as possible can be delivered by the two FSITPs that remain as the only members of the section. However, the CS-03 advises that some duties may either have to be devolved to other programs or simply not offered at all.
Recommendations to the Mission
5.5.1 Operational work plans should be developed for each of the program's sections.
5.5.2 Policies and procedures should be developed, or formalized, and placed on the Wiki.
5.5.3 The mission should develop a multi-year capital acquisition plan and have the CMM approve it annually.
5.5.4 An MOU or Service-Level Agreement should be developed that would outline services provided to the consulates.
5.5.5 An implementation plan for the mission's role as a CSDP should be developed. As well, ongoing communication with the RSCEMA should be maintained to ensure coordinated preparations and that the mission will be fully ready to assume this new responsibility.
5.5.6 Service standards should be reviewed to ensure they appropriately reflect the program's capacity to deliver services following the program's resource cuts.
5.5.7 A client feedback mechanism should be implemented for all areas of service delivery
Procurement and Expenditure Controls
5.5.8 The CRB should review contracting documentation and procedures at both the initial and the final stages of the process to ensure effective oversight.
5.5.9 The asset and liability report should be reviewed on a monthly basis.
5.5.10 The mission should ensure that all hospitality/travel claims are submitted with the necessary documentation fully completed.
5.5.11 Fuel purchases and vehicle mileage should be verified and reconciled on a monthly basis.
5.5.12 A formalized backup system should be put in place for all the key services and responsibilities of the Finance section.
5.5.13 The mission should ensure there is proper ***.
5.5.14 Whenever ***. Either a CBS or the FMO should control the official receipts booklets.
Asset Life-cycle Management
5.5.15 Property staff should ensure that requests for maintenance and repair for the OR are entered into the *** system.
5.5.16 The mission should ensure that inventories for all assets are documented and custodial ownership of the inventories assigned.
5.5.17 The mission should ensure that proper procedures and authorizations are undertaken for the disposal of surplus assets.
5.5.18 A specific timeline for the termination of the warehouse lease should be determined.
Staffing and HR Controls
5.5.19 Roles and responsibilities for HR services should be clarified and communicated to all staff and clients.
5.5.20 Staffing procedures should be developed and communicated to all staff.
5.5.21 An arrival/departure checklist for LES should be developed.
5.5.22 A consolidated mission-wide training plan should be developed.
Recommendations to Headquarters
5.5.23 The Physical Resources Bureau (ARD) should *** provide proper signage for the chancery facilities.
Mission Actions and Timeframes
5.5.1 As of the end of September 2012, the Property section work plans will have been updated to reflect the changes as a result of DRAP and the feedback received following the inspection. The IT section has a work plan in Remedy and an HR work plan already exists. For the other sections, work plans will be developed and will be reflected in the mid-term PMP review. In progress for November 2012.
5.5.2 The mission is working to develop and formalize policies, which will be placed on the Wiki. The Finance section is in the process of drafting a mission travel policy covering specific topics like the use of travel agencies and reimbursement for the use of "Bahn Cards". The travel policy once approved will be posted on the Wiki. The same applies to a mission contracting policy that is being drafted with the cooperation of the MCO and a contracting specialist. In progress for November 2012.
5.5.3 A multi-year Capital Acquisition Plan has been created. The plan will be reviewed annually by CMM at the end of each summer. Implemented September 2012.
5.5.4 Agreements with the consulates in Munich and Dusseldorf, as well as the Honorary Consul in Stuttgart, are currently in development. Once completed, they will be kept as evergreen documents. In progress for December 2012.
5.5.5 An implementation plan for the mission's role as a CSDP has been developed and is being updated frequently as plans progress. The organisational chart for Finance, complete with roles, tasks and responsibilities, has also been updated. The phasing-in of client missions will allow the section to reallocate tasks and have new staff fully trained ahead of assuming their new responsibilities. All steps are closely coordinated with the RSCEMA and as required with Headquarters. Implemented August 2012.
5.5.6 Service standards will have to be updated again to reflect DRAP cuts, new private lease policies, as well as include other units that were not part of the original document (e.g. Translators, and Events/AV). In progress for November 2102.
5.5.7 The Property section already has a feedback mechanism built into its service request system *** the DMCO is copied on every message and reviews the data monthly. The IT section is using Remedy for feedback from clients. For the other Common Services sections, a questionnaire will be developed to request feedback from clients once a year. In progress for February 2013.
5.5.8 The DMCO has set up "Contracting-Contracts" e-mail account to receive all formal contracting solicitations and bids. The DMCO will monitor the account and ensure the appropriate segregation of duties among the various officers. The mission has a CRB in place that is operating according to terms of reference. The CRB approves the contracting process to avoid wasting effort and time on competitions based on an insufficient criteria (for instance deficient statement of work, inappropriate expenditures, etc.). All qualifying bids and the recommendation of the procuring manager will be reviewed by the CRB before signing, and the outcome of the contracting process - i.e. a signed contract - will be forwarded to the CRB. A mission policy for contracting, consolidating the procedures and guidelines currently in place at the mission, is being drafted. In progress for November 2012.
5.5.9 In order to take into account resources and workloads, the mission will reassess the frequency at which the asset and liability reports are reviewed once the CSDP model has been fully implemented. The review will take place between July and October 2012. In progress for November 2012.
5.5.10 A mission policy for travel will be drafted, making specific reference to "Bahn Cards", usage of travel agencies, incidentals, maximum hotel rates in Canada, exchange rates, etc. The finance will continue to audit travel and hospitality claims and work with clients to ensure high quality account verification, in particular related to travel and hospitality. When the policy is distributed, the Finance Section will take care to include a summary of the requirements concerning documentation of claims as well as advise on best practices. In progress for November 2012.
5.5.11 The vehicle log books for all three missions in Germany are now verified monthly for average fuel consumption and mileage by the Property Officer. In addition, new vehicle log books have been distributed to all missions to reflect updated procedures. The relevant DMCO has scheduled quarterly reviews of the vehicle motor pool and log books. Implemented September 2012.
5.5.12 A formalized back-up system has been put in place. Implemented July 2012.
5.5.13 Please refer to the mission's comments under 4.5.4. ***. Implemented September 2012.
5.5.14 The receipt booklets have been transferred from the ***. For all transfers ***, a receipt will be issued, as has been the practice in the past. For the bank run *** a log book has been introduced. Implemented July 2012.
5.5.15 As of the end of August 2012, all requests received from the OR are copied into *** by the Property Assistant to maintain an accurate record and timeline. Staff from the OR do not have permanent signet connections and therefore requests are often emailed or phoned in. Implemented August 2012.
5.5.16 The mission is participating in a pilot project on inventory management. The project will ensure that inventories for all assets are documented and custodial ownership is assigned. As well, an inventory of IT assets (tools and equipment) not already in Remedy will be undertaken. In progress for April 2012.
5.5.17 The DMCO has reviewed the policy for disposals and appropriate procedures are now being followed. The three missions have held auctions to dispose of surplus physical assets in accordance to the procedures outlined in the Materiel Management Manual. Implemented September 2012.
5.5.18 The lease for the warehouse will not be renewed at the end of the contract (December 31, 2012); notice has been sent to the landlord. Implemented September 2012.
5.5.19 A table showing the responsibilities of HR staff will be prepared and distributed to all staff by the end of September 2012, with a copy placed on the Wiki. In progress for October 2012.
5.5.20 A document outlining staffing procedures will be prepared and distributed to all staff by the end of October 2012, with a copy placed on the Wiki. In progress for November 2012.
5.5.21 An arrival/departure checklist for LES will be prepared by the end of October 2012, with a copy placed on the Wiki. In progress for November 2012.
5.5.22 The Training Coordinator has completed an analysis of the training goals identified in employees' PMPs for 2012-2013. This data will in turn be presented to the CMM along with suggestions for training available locally and through Canada to address the issues identified. The resulting mission-wide training plan will be placed on the Wiki. In progress for November 2012.
Headquarters Actions and Timeframes
5.5.23 Signage design, manufacturing and installation tenders were received in the first quarter of 2012 but were found to be too expensive. A de-scoping exercise is underway, with the intent of installing modest signage in 2013. In progress for July 2013.
Appendix A: Mission Resources Fact Sheet
|Chancery||1 - Berlin||1 - Dusseldorf|
1 - Munich
|Official Residence||1 - Berlin|
|Staff Quarters||6 - Berlin||19 - Berlin|
2 - Dusseldorf
3 - Munich
|Vehicles||9 - Berlin|
1 - Dusseldorf
1 - Munich
|Storage||1 - Berlin|
|Operating||$ 662,159||$ 3,279,896|
|Total||$ 6,276,729||$ 9,151,848|
|* Position to be staffed|
|Head of Mission||7||2||5|
Appendix B: Frequently Used Acronyms
- Canada-based Staff
- Commercial Economic
- Committee on Mission Management
- Consular Management Information Program
- Contingency Plan
- Contract Review Board
- Client Service Fund
- Electronic Funds Transfer
- Deputy Management Consular Officer
- Foreign Policy and Diplomacy Service
- Foreign Service Information Technology Professional
- Full Time Equivalent
- Fiscal Year
- Global Commerce Strategy
- Global Value Chains
- Head of Mission
- Honorary Consul
- Human Resources
- High Security Zone
- Information Communication Technologies
- Information Management - Information Technology
- Integrated Management System
- Locally Engaged Information Technology Professional
- Locally Engaged Staff
- LES Management Consultation Board
- Management Consular Officer
- Mission Emergency Plan
- Mission Financial Officer
- MM Module
- Materiel Management Module of IMS
- Mission Maintenance Work Plan
- Memorandum of Understanding
- Mission Security Officer
- Mission Property Management Plan
- North American Platform Program
- Official Residence
- Operations Zone
- Post Initiative Fund
- Program Manager
- Performance Management Agreement
- Human Resources - Performance Management Program
- Consular - Passport Management Program
- Physical Resources Information - Mission Environment
- Registration of Canadians Abroad
- Science and Technology
- Senior Trade Commissioner
- Staff Quarter
- Security Zone
- Trade Commissioner
- Trade Commissioner Assistant
- Trade Commissioner Service
- The TCS' Client Relationship Management System
- Office of the Inspector General
- Inspection Division
- Date Modified: