Mr. Chair, I am honoured to appear before this committee to speak about my new role as deputy minister of national defence.
In April, I addressed this committee when I was appointed as the senior associate deputy minister.
I spent the better part of my time speaking about my personal and professional life before coming to National Defence. Of course, those details haven't changed.
Today I'll focus my remarks on what has happened since I became senior associate deputy minister, as well as the challenges that lie ahead of me as deputy minister.
First, let me say how proud I am to be speaking at this committee today with my two colleagues, the senior associate deputy minister and the associate deputy minister. I am also enormously proud to be here alongside the Canadian Armed Forces' new Judge Advocate General, Commodore Geneviève Bernatchez, who is the first woman to be named to this very important office.
Last week I assumed the role of deputy minister. I worked very closely with former DM John Forster to ensure a smooth transition, and I wish him the very best in his well-deserved retirement. As the senior associate, I saw first-hand what a hard-working, dedicated public servant John was. My first week as DM only served to deepen my admiration for all that he accomplished. His steadfast determination to deliver on programs and commitments was matched only by his dedication to building strong relationships with leaders across the defence team.
Together, under his leadership, the defence team was able to move the agenda forward. In particular, working as the mental health champion has been fulfilling for me, and I look forward to continuing in that role in the years ahead. It is important to continue discussing mental health and ensuring plans are in place to support the defence team, both military and civilian.
But the launch of Canada's new defence policy has been monumental. I am grateful to have been with the department for its release.
The Defence Team leadership truly understands that Strong, Secure, Engaged, or SSE, as we call it, is a once in a generation opportunity. It is an opportunity to transform the way we support the Canadian Armed Forces and prepare for the defence of Canada over the next 20 years.
This is an opportunity we won't squander. We will deliver this policy because it's what's expected of us.
I'm proud to have recently been a part of the joint suicide prevention strategy between National Defence and Veterans Affairs. It was the first SSE—“Strong, Secure, Engaged”—initiative that the Department of National Defence delivered on, and a clear signal that no effort would be spared in quickly implementing the initiative to better care for people. That's really what it's all about. None of the tremendous work the Canadian Armed Forces does can happen if we don't care for its members properly. I'm pleased to report that everyone at the Department of National Defence is on board with the rapid implementation of people-focused programs and services. I am fortunate that I was appointed to this position at a time when the relationships between the military and the civilian parts of the defence team are strong.
As we usher in a new era of growth and development for Canada's military, we could not ask for a better leader for the Canadian Armed Forces than Chief of the Defence Staff General Jonathan Vance. I intend to build on the relationships that have been created and continue in John Forster's footsteps as we commit ourselves to the tremendous task of delivering SSE's initiatives.
On the departmental side, I have a great team working with me towards these goals, and I am fortunate to have welcomed two extraordinary new deputies to help lead our organization through this transformational change. They will introduce themselves in detail, but I wanted to speak about what each of them brings to their role.
In the role of associate deputy minister, we have Gordon Venner, former assistant deputy minister of policy in the department.
SSE was delivered and developed under his strong guidance and leadership. Few people in the department have such a depth of understanding of this policy and its initiatives. More than that, Gordon brings decades of foreign policy experience to the role, having served as Canada's ambassador to Iran. He is widely considered to be among the public service's most capable policy minds.
In the role of senior associate deputy minister, I am pleased to introduce Bill Matthews, the former Comptroller General for Canada. In addition to his proven financial acumen, Bill has a track record of project management leadership through organizational change, which will serve our department extremely well through his tenure.
I can safely say that Gordon, Bill, and I have gotten off to an excellent start working together. Let's hope they think the same.
We have a strong leadership team at the Department of National Defence, and I'm enthusiastic about our prospects for successful implementation of our defence policy.
Succeed we must. The criticality of the work performed by our department cannot be understated. The women and men at DND are key enablers who support the Canadian Armed Forces in defending Canada and our interests at home and abroad. Whether it's thwarting terrorist activities overseas or rescuing civilians from natural disasters at home, the Canadian Armed Forces rely on the support of the department to do their jobs as well as they do, and I intend to strengthen that support even further during my time as deputy minister.
The policy is essentially a reset for DND and the Canadian Armed Forces. Every effort we undertake as a department is now geared towards the successful delivery of its vision and its goals. With 111 initiatives set out within SSE, implementation is going to be complex. As a start, my focus is on completing the groundwork that will set us up for successful delivery of this policy over the long term. That's not all flashy announcement-worthy work. It's not, by any stretch of the imagination, but it's work that must be done.
To start, the chief of the defence staff, Bill, Gord, other defence team leaders, and I can track each and every initiative that has been announced as part of SSE. The CDS and I are alerted when things are running behind schedule, and together we question, push, guide, and encourage forward momentum across the department.
Part of what allows us to do this is the department's analytics software. We're using it to its full capacity. It's a tool that we've had in the department for 10 years, but we're using it and finding it especially valuable for SSE implementation. The software ensures that everyone in the department can understand and track progress on any SSE initiative at any time, and since all defence team leaders have the tracking software on our desktops, we can dive into initiatives ourselves. It's early days, but progress is good on populating the system. That kind of transparency is motivating, and it sends a clear message through the department that we're pressing ahead and committed to staying on track.
We're also growing the defence team by recruiting, staffing, and training in key areas for growth, but that takes time, and we need to speak about it with frankness and honesty. Last week, at a Canadian Global Affairs Institute event, senior CAF leaders and I had the chance to discuss the challenges we face in staffing specialized positions that we need filled to deliver SSE, including procurement specialists, engineers, and cybersecurity experts. Our task is not to hire as many people as we can, but instead to find the right people with the right skills to fulfill the right roles. That takes time if we want to get it right, and we do, but it's worth the time and effort because we will be better off in the long term. It's more of that groundwork that I mentioned earlier.
Even as we do that, I'm focused on the overarching priorities of SSE, which are first and foremost the care of Canadian Armed Forces members and their families. Initiatives related to the care and support of CAF members are, naturally, no-fail initiatives. They will be treated with urgency because people are at the core of this policy.
You'll hear the chief of the defence staff often say: “People first, mission always”. That's very much a guiding principle for the rollout of SSE, as well.
But giving Canadian Armed Forces members the tools to do their jobs well is equally important.
The Canadian Armed Forces cannot be what they need to be without the right equipment. We get that, so we're implementing the capability and equipment-related initiatives at the same time as we're taking care of our people, and we're doing it with equal fervour and energy. Our materiel team is diligently streamlining its processes to reduce the time it takes to get the equipment our troops need, and we're committed to changing the narrative about DND's relationship with the defence industry once and for all.
With a policy reset of this magnitude, the defence team will be relying heavily on exceptional support from, and collaboration with, other government departments and central agencies, such as finance, Public Services and Procurement Canada, the Privy Council Office, Treasury Board Secretariat, and others. We need solid partners in each of those organizations to deliver SSE.
My role as DM is not only to guide the department in maintaining forward momentum but also to build the trust and confidence within these organizations that DND can manage the implementation of SSE. When our analytics software alerts us that something has gone off course, it will be my role, with the CDS, to keep the key leaders of those partner organizations informed, so that we know how we'll resolve issues and get back on track. I'll work with other deputy ministers, the Clerk of the Privy Council, and defence stakeholders from all sectors. We'll need all hands on deck to deliver this policy. Strong collaboration is critical to see this through.
We'll be keeping you informed throughout the rollout of this policy as well, keeping lines of communication open and continuing this dialogue in the months and years to come.
Mr. Chair, if there's one more thing I'd like to convey to this committee, it's the pride with which I'll fulfill my duties as the deputy minister of national defence. This department is in my DNA, with generations of my family having served and still serving. I don't take my role for granted. The people who work at the Department of National Defence, the Canadian Armed Forces members we proudly support, and the goals we're working toward—I'm privileged to be a part of it all, and I'm delighted to lead the department in the months ahead.
Thank you for your attention.
Thank you for the opportunity to address this committee.
I consider it an honour and a privilege to have been appointed senior associate deputy minister of the Department of National Defence.
I am looking forward to working with Deputy Minister Thomas and Associate Deputy Minister Venner as we implement the government's new defence policy: Strong, Secure, Engaged.
I am eager to bring the experience and skills I have acquired in the private and public sectors to this position.
I will have two areas of primary focus. The first area is procurement. The implementation of Strong, Secure, Engaged will require a high volume of procurement activity.
The second area is the transition. There is important work to be done to close the seam between the Department of National Defence and Veterans Affairs Canada. That work rests at the heart of improved support for our veterans and their families. It's important for the Canadian Armed Forces members, too. We must ensure that the Canadian Armed Forces members have the support they need to prosper as they transition to civilian life.
This is an exciting time for everyone at the Department of National Defence. “Strong, Secure, Engaged” was a significant and much-needed policy reset. As part of the consultation process, the defence teams solicited input from internal experts, Canadians, other government departments, and our allies. “Strong, Secure, Engaged” will ensure that the women and men in the Canadian Armed Forces are well equipped and well supported for the next 20 years. I look forward to working with my new colleagues as we move forward to implement “Strong, Secure, Engaged” and improve our support to the Canadian Armed Forces.
When it comes to the enormous task of implementing the new policy, I believe I have two areas of strength that will enable me to add value.
Before joining the public service 13 years ago, I was an associate partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers and IBM. The past 13 years of my career in the federal public service were spent at the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, mostly within the Office of the Comptroller General, and for the past three years, I served as the comptroller general of Canada.
During that time I obtained extensive experience developing, implementing, and interpreting Government of Canada policies in the areas of financial management, internal audits, procurement, and project management. In addition to costing, my experience in the areas of procurement and project management will be most beneficial in my new role.
In addition to being responsible for the policies in these areas, I was the functional leader of the related professional communities. Internal audit and financial management communities in government have set a very high standard in the areas of talent management and professional development. In the areas of procurement and project management, while I acknowledge there is still work to be done, I am incredibly proud of the work that was accomplished there to build and strengthen these communities.
Implementing “Strong, Secure, Engaged” will be challenging, and problems will be encountered along the way. Collaboration, openness to change, and good financial management practices can prevent and solve problems. I look forward to playing a leadership role in all those areas.
I also have experience in helping to grow organizations and communities in times of change. I know that will be very useful as we grow the defence team to implement “Strong, Secure, Engaged”. For example, when I joined the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat in 2004, only 1,100, or about 35% of the government's financial management community were designated professional accountants. In 2016 that number had grown to over 2,500. That growth is critical to ensure taxpayer dollars are well spent and to allow parliamentarians to exercise their critical oversight role. A focus on value for money and high-quality reporting is something I plan to maintain at the Department of National Defence within the framework of SSE.
I'd like to touch again upon the care and support of our people. SSE is centred on improving the quality of life for our military members, veterans, and their families. I believe many of these lessons can be applied to our civilian workforce as well. The well-being of employees is essential to the success of any organization. We cannot do great things as an organization if our people are not well cared for. Employees who are well supported are ready and eager to serve.
Closing the seam between the Department of National Defence and the Department of Veterans Affairs was a priority in the mandate letter of the ministers of both departments, and that priority is reflected in “Strong, Secure, Engaged”. As Deputy Minister Thomas noted, we've already started delivering on “Strong, Secure, Engaged” initiatives related to the Canadian Armed Forces members and veterans, but there is much more to do, so the work continues. The transition and veterans support pieces will be among my priorities as the senior associate deputy minister.
On a more personal note, mental health is an issue that has recently begun to receive the attention it deserves. This matter is very important to me. I currently sit on the board of directors for the Royal's Institute of Mental Health Research in Ottawa, as well as chairing their finance and audit committee. I find this role very rewarding and I look forward to continuing in that capacity.
Mr. Chair and members of the committee, thank you for having me here today and for giving me the opportunity to introduce myself. Thank you for your time. I look forward to your questions.
Good afternoon, Mr. Chair and honourable members of the committee. I will be brief.
I am pleased to appear before you today as associate deputy minister of national defence.
It's a tremendous honour to do this job. Working alongside the defence team that you see here, together with Chief of the Defence Staff General Vance and the entire Canadian Armed Forces leadership team is an immense privilege.
Over the last three years, I have worked with the Canadian Forces to help enable and facilitate the tremendously important work they do. Whether fighting forest fires and floods at home, deploying abroad to provide humanitarian assistance, or standing up for our values in conflict zones, the Canadian Forces do great work every day on our behalf. Being part of the team that supports them means that I get to come to the office every day confident that the work I do is important and meaningful and helps to make Canada and the world a better place.
It's not just a tremendous honour to start this new position alongside Jody and Bill and the new Judge Advocate General; it's also a great moment to take on new responsibilities.
Earlier this year, the Department of National Defence concluded the most comprehensive review of our defence policy in Canadian history. We now go forward on the basis of a sound policy footing. I'm particularly proud of the broad consultative process that kicked off that review. The online process, which resulted in over 20,000 Canadians sharing with us their comments and questions, would have been technologically impossible not that long ago. The round tables we convened with experts across the country were well attended and allowed our and parliamentary secretary to hear directly from knowledgeable Canadians. Of course, dozens of members of Parliament, maybe some of them at this table today, held their own consultations in their constituencies and were kind enough to share the results with us.
Let me also commend the excellent committee work done in this House and in the other place; it contributed to our deliberations.
Mr. Chair, I come to my new responsibilities with a different background from most of my colleagues. I spent most of my career as a diplomat. I am, and always will be, a proud product of the Pearson Building. I hope this experience will help me to be of service to our and to Jody Thomas as they lead the department forward.
I served as the assistant deputy minister in the Global Affairs department, responsible for Afghanistan, among other countries, at a time when we still had a significant troop presence in that country. I've been responsible in the Global Affairs department for the Middle East twice in my career, and I have found that experience invaluable since we deployed our troops to the region under Operation Impact. I spent 12 years working in the Europe branch and in our mission to the European Union in Brussels. I found that useful, as Canada has assumed a new job as one of NATO's framework nations while deploying to Latvia for an enduring mission.
I've also, Mr. Chair, spent considerable time working with international organizations such as APEC, the OECD, the G8, and the G20. I am finding that time spent working in these organizations is applicable in other international and multilateral contexts, such as NATO, NORAD, or the counter-ISIL coalition.
Mr. Chair, the challenges facing the Canadian Forces at this time are considerable. The rapid pace of technological development alone means that we have considerable work ahead of us to ensure that our forces can do the work we expect from them. Our rapidly changing geostrategic environment, described in chapter 4 of our new defence policy, sets out some of the other challenges we face. If you haven't had a chance to read it, I particularly recommend that chapter. It's only seven pages long, and I think it sums up some of the tremendous challenges in the environment that shapes our work today.
One lesson I learned while working on Middle East issues and while serving as our ambassador in Iran is that long periods of stability can often disguise underlying social turmoil, occasionally resulting in rapid and even revolutionary change. Just think of the Arab Spring or the Iranian revolution. Periods of instability mean that our Canadian Forces must maintain high levels of readiness. We never know when they will have to deploy on short notice to far corners of the globe to deliver humanitarian aid, help prevent tragedies, or fight chaos and destruction.
In the months ahead, I hope to help the Canadian Forces maintain readiness, renew themselves for upcoming challenges, implement our new defence policy, and adapt to a rapidly changing world. Working with , Jody Thomas, General Vance, Bill Matthews, the JAG, and other DND leaders, I am confident that we have the team we need, a team with complementary skill sets, well balanced to respond to both the predictable and the unexpected.
If I have learned anything from working with the Canadian Forces these last three years, it is that teamwork is critical to responding to all great challenges. Of course, that team will need to transcend national defence. Modern threats to our security mean that we need to work as part of a seamless whole-of-government effort. Indeed, our team needs to work effectively with other levels of government.
I spent some time working in provincial and municipal government early in my career and I know that effective cooperation across levels of government will be just as important in dealing with security threats in the future as it has been in coping with natural disasters in the past.
Mr. Chair, I look forward to being part of the team.
Thank you for the opportunity to speak with you today.
I am honoured to have the opportunity to appear before you today.
As the 15th Judge Advocate General, I am proud to follow the worthy line of my predecessors, especially as the Canadian Armed Forces Legal Services Branch prepares to celebrate 100 years of service in support of the rule of law and democracy in Canada.
I understand that you have been provided a copy of my biography, so my intention is to briefly identify the role and function of the Judge Advocate General and my vision for the office and the work we do.
I am appointed as the Judge Advocate General to perform two distinct roles as set out in the National Defence Act. First, I have the responsibility of superintending the administration of military justice in the Canadian Armed Forces. Second, I act as legal adviser to the Governor General, the , the department, and the Canadian Armed Forces in matters relating to miliary law.
Canadian military law includes military justice, as well as the law pertaining to the governance, administration, and activities of the Canadian Armed Forces. Together, as a team, members of the Office of the Judge Advocate General act with purpose. We enable the provision of client-focused, timely, options-oriented, and operationally driven legal advice and services in support of the Government of Canada and defence priorities and objectives.
To that end, we work in close collaboration with our colleagues in other departments, including our colleagues in the Department of Justice, as well as the legal services of the Privy Council Office and Global Affairs Canada.
Under my command, the office will continue to play a key role in helping decision-makers understand and place into context the legal aspects of their activities.
The Office of the Judge Advocate General is made up of of 200 regular force and 48 reserve force legal officers, seven senior non-commissioned officers, and 91 civilian support personnel serving across Canada and abroad. The Office of the JAG is composed of the directorate of military prosecutions, the directorate of defence counsel services, as well as the following five divisions: military justice, administrative law, operational law, regional services, and the chief of staff.
I have command over all officers and non-commissioned members posted to the establishment of the Office of the Judge Advocate General. Legal officers must all be members in good standing of their respective provincial or territorial law societies. They are officers of the Canadian Armed Forces. The duties of those legal officers are determined by or under my authority, and in respect of the performance of those duties a legal officer may only be under the command of another legal officer. This relationship reinforces the obligations of the legal profession and ensures the provision of independent legal advice.
In 2010, 29% of our lawyers were women. Today, 35% are. It is important to highlight that half of our new legal officers are women. As you may be aware, about half of the lawyers who now enter the legal profession in Canada are women. This demonstrates that our current numbers are reflective of the broader Canadian legal profession.
As stated in Canada's new defence policy, our most important asset is our people. Along with my senior leadership, we are setting the conditions to ensure that our people receive the care, the services, the professional development, and the support they require to succeed. We also foster a culture that encourages diversity as well as inclusion. This is central to attracting and retaining talented and qualified individuals.
The areas of law for which the Judge Advocate General is responsible include military justice, military administrative law, and operational and international law.
As Judge Advocate General, I exercise authority over everything related to the administration of military justice in the Canadian Armed Forces. I am responsible for ensuring that this system operates effectively and in accordance with the rule of law.
As Canadian courts, including the Supreme Court of Canada, have repeatedly confirmed, the military justice system is necessary since it addresses the particular needs of the Canadian Armed Forces with regard to discipline, efficiency, and morale. It is a system that is an integral part of Canada's legal mosaic, which continuously evolves and which must remain consistent with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
Military administrative law also forms part of the legal backbone of the Canadian Armed Forces. My administrative law division provides strategic legal support to the Canadian Armed Forces and the Department of National Defence on a wide range of matters dealing with all aspects of a military member's career, from recruitment to release and transition to civilian life. As the overarching priorities of Canada's new defence policy relate to the care and support of Canadian Armed Forces members, my administrative law division plays an important role in supporting the chief of military personnel in the implementation of the policy's objectives. The administrative law division is also continuously involved in providing legal advice and services in support of a range of strategic priorities, including the implementation of Operation Honour.
Last but not least, my operational and international law division provides legal support to the Canadian Armed Forces and the department in relation to the conduct of domestic and international operations. The practice of operational law is something that truly makes the practice of military law different from that of our civilian colleagues, particularly in the deployed context.
There are currently 19 overseas missions supported by deployed legal officers or with personnel from my operational and international law division. Further, over the last several months, our legal officers have advised on domestic operations such as the Canadian Armed Forces deployments to assist Canadian civilian authorities in their emergency responses to ice storms in New Brunswick, to floods in Quebec and Ontario, and to wildfires in British Columbia.
Mr. Chair, I do not take my appointment as Judge Advocate General for granted. It is a tremendous privilege to lead the women and the men who enable departmental and Canadian Armed Forces decision-makers to conduct their multi-faceted operations, whether at home or abroad, in accordance with applicable laws while meeting Canadians' expectations.
Thank you so much for allowing me to present a more complete and detailed picture of what the statistics actually look like.
The first thing I want to say is that like every crime against a person, crimes of a sexual nature present a real human trauma. The judiciary aspect is only a single facet, a very small facet, of how this entire problem needs to be looked at. We in the military justice system play an important role in addressing the issue, but this issue is addressed more broadly by our institution, the Canadian Armed Forces. I want to reiterate that it remains a priority to address these issues and ensure that a profound cultural change actually occurs within our organization.
You will have heard from the media last Monday that 23% of charges that pertain to crimes of a sexual nature were concluded by a finding of guilt. I was away from the city when this news hit the media, and my immediate reaction was that it didn't sound correct. I went back to my military justice division and asked the director of military prosecutions for his input.
What they were able to provide to me was that when charges are brought that pertain to a crime of a sexual nature, there are a number of charges that can be laid. Some of them will be for sexual assault, but in the precise military context, we also have access to charges that are not available in the civilian system, such as disgraceful conduct, drunkenness, and abuse of subordinates. These charges are often brought as an alternative to the sexual assault charge under the Criminal Code of Canada.
It is quite possible, then, that either one of two things is going to happen. In the military justice system, as in the broader criminal courts, those who are accused have rights. They're entitled to a vigorous defence, and the verdict is based on the evidence adduced before the courts. It's quite possible that the evidence will not fully support the charge of sexual assault but could support the lesser charges I just mentioned. This is what usually happens when there is a finding of guilt. In fact, when we look at the statistics from 2014 to March 2017, there were 18 cases related to sexual assault in the Canadian Armed Forces, which resulted in 10 convictions, so the statistic is more like 56%.
Convictions or findings of guilt are not necessarily the proof of a healthy and functioning system, so I want to caution here that this is only one indicator of how the system is functioning. It doesn't give the entire picture.
I can start, and then I'll ask Bill to continue, as he'll be taking on the responsibility for this file.
The CDS has been direct and very clear that there is a difference between employability and deployability. We need to look very carefully at universality of service and how we can retain some of the very talented and well-trained people who still can serve a function within the Canadian Armed Forces, even though they may not potentially be able to be deployed. He's looking at those policies with the commander of military personnel, and it's a complex situation. We have to get it right, because if we make mistakes, we compound problems.
Again, it's one of those things that we're having continual and thoughtful discussion about, which I think is useful. We're not just putting pen to paper right away and leaping to a conclusion about how this is going to work.
We have created, as you know, transition units. Those transition units are really critical, because we're no longer releasing people until they're ready to be released, until the foundations for their future employment, for how they're going to manage their lives upon release, for how their families are going to cope, are in place. That's extremely important.
We forget that people come into this organization often at age 17, and it's all they know. It's all their families know. It's all of their friends, all of their relationships. In many branches of the armed forces, everything is centred around the base. Then when that cord is cut, they feel very isolated. The work that the chief of the defence staff is doing, again with the commander of military personnel, is looking at ensuring that we don't cut that cord too quickly, that people are ready emotionally, physically, financially. We've done all that transition work with them so that they understand and are ready for what's ahead of them.
At the same time, the Department of National Defence should be the employer of choice for people transitioning out of the Canadian Armed Forces. We should be trying to find as many jobs as we can for them within the department and within the public service, which is a very good thing. However, the benefit of some of the attention that has been received by Veterans Affairs and the department post-Invictus, as an example, is the growing number of private sector employers who want to employ people who are transitioning out of the armed forces. I think we are benefiting from an all-time high, probably since World War II, of appreciation for the quality of people who serve in the forces, their dedication to this country, and the fact that they can be employable in any number of industries and private sector organizations.
We are passionate about this, and there is a lot of work going on. The bottom line is the chief's direction that we don't release people until they're ready.
The new National Defence policy is ambitious, but it has been received with enthusiasm by all the troops. I think the skills of the people responsible for implementing it reassures all members of the committee.
Congratulations on your appointments. We are very honoured to welcome you today.
The focus of the policy has been on the men and women of the Canadian Armed Forces, as well as their families. This is what Canadians have clearly told us.
My colleague from Kingston and I have a number of things in common, including a military college in each of our ridings: the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston and the military college in Saint-Jean. My colleague has raised an important point, namely that it is necessary to connect the military world with the civilian world. There are many things we can do about it. For example, we have a responsibility to further promote the professionalism of the people of the Canadian Armed Forces, their commitment and the sacrifices they make.
There may be a second point that we can advance.
Mr. Matthews, I really liked your introduction. You said that you will focus on procurement and the transition to civilian life.
There will be major changes in the rules for procurement. The transactions, as a whole, will be done directly with the department, while the major purchases will continue to be with Public Services and Procurement Canada. I think it's an opportunity to connect with the civilian world because you have to inform people about those changes.
Mr. Matthews, how do you plan to connect with the civilian world to explain this policy and its impact on innovation and job creation in Canada?
We're using analytics, the analytic system I spoke about, to measure achievement in terms of the successful implementation of each initiative. Everything is important, but some things, though, are further down the road. We're aligning implementation with the money coming in, and it's very well planned.
We've also aligned our departmental results framework with “Strong, Secure, Engaged” so that the key outputs we'll be measuring for the departmental results framework will show Parliament what we've done: here's what you asked us to do, and here's how we've done it. This is aligned against SSE so that we're not doing one-off reporting. Everything is very holistic, a cohesive look at what's being done in the department.
The challenges are many. If we want to recruit 100 people and we only get 95, then we feel we've not succeeded. If we don't get the money spent in a particular year, that's going to be problematic for us, and if we're not seeing the increases in productivity, for example, in the turnover procurement projects, we'll see that as a challenge.
On the whole, though, I think we have put in place the foundation to succeed. We're taking it very slowly and very systematically. We know who's doing what. We have a collective understanding of what needs to be achieved, and that was step one. Initiative 71 might have meant something very different to the person who is a lead versus the person who wrote the initiative, the CDS, or the DM, so a collective understanding is really critical.
It's a big undertaking. Success is going to be measured in days, weeks, quarters, months, and years. We feel that if we align what we achieve with the funding, hit the milestones that have been laid out in the system, and manage the risk, we'll be doing very well. In six months we'll have a better view than we do now. We're looking at outputs and measuring the what, not the how.