Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Progress update: Response to the Mass Casualty Commission recommendation P.59

On this page

  1. List of tables
  2. List of acronyms and abbreviations
  3. Introduction
  4. Pillar 1: Develop foundational policies and tools
  5. Pillar 2: Foster sustainable management culture change
  6. Pillar 3: Prepare leaders for the future
  7. Next steps
  8. Annex A – Action Plan (as released in the September 2023 response)

List of tables

List of acronyms and abbreviations

RCMP
Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Introduction

This is the first semi-annual progress update on the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) response to Recommendation P.59 - RCMP Management Culture stemming from the Nova Scotia Mass Casualty Commission Public Inquiry final report, Turning the Tide Together, Volume 5: Policing.

Over the years, there have been a number of recommendations outlined in various reports that speak to the need to improve leadership and management culture at the RCMP. Many of the recommended improvements highlighted in these reports have been addressed through the RCMP's culture change agenda. While some progress has been made, there continues to be opportunity for improvement, especially with regard to planning for the future leadership of the RCMP, including leadership development, and improved and transparent communications to RCMP members.

Further to the tragedy that occurred in Nova Scotia in 2020, the Mass Casualty Commission highlighted the need for a dedicated approach focussed on developing leadership skills and capacity within the RCMP. In Recommendation P.59 the MCC called for:

  1. Within six months of the publication of this Report, the RCMP Commissioner should provide the responsible Minister and the Management Advisory Board, and publish on the RCMP website, a document that explains the criteria on which the RCMP presently selects, develops, recognizes, and rewards its commissioned officers and those in equivalent civilian roles. This document should include a detailed explanation of the following: (i) how the RCMP will change these criteria to disrupt the unhealthy aspects of the RCMP's management culture; and (ii) what other steps are being taken to address the unhealthy aspects of the RCMP's management culture identified in this Report, in the Bastarache Report, and by the Brown Task Force.
  2. Starting no later than one year after publication of this Report, the Commissioner should provide semi-annual written updates to the responsible Minister and the Management Advisory Board on its progress in addressing the recommendations made in this Report. These updates should include timelines for the achievement of each milestone and should also be posted to the RCMP website.

In September 2023, the RCMP released its response to Recommendation P.59 which included information on:

  1. Holistic culture change at the RCMP
  2. Current criteria – How we select, develop, reward and recognize
  3. Steps taken to modernize leadership at the RCMP
  4. The approach to change

Section 4 of the response, the approach to change, built on what has already been completed in response to external reviews, and established a formal action plan to address Recommendation P.59 (Annex A) with the objective to foster a healthy management culture, create a sustainable employee experience during their tenure at the RCMP, and to better equip Officers and Executives to develop as senior leaders within the organization.

The response acknowledged that efforts to strengthen leadership development and training are part of, and impacted by, broader work to change the culture of the RCMP. Ensuring our success in achieving this objective will take time, resources and collaboration with partners and stakeholders. Importantly, it will require us to strengthen our focus on addressing key systemic barriers that impact diverse groups of employees. These are issues that the RCMP cannot address alone but that are critical to our ability to make meaningful and lasting change.

Regarding leadership, while much work has been done, the response highlighted opportunities for improvement in a number of areas, including:

  • succession planning
  • need for focused leadership development
  • strategic use of talent management processes
  • improved communications to RCMP members to increase transparency, while maintaining flexibility to meet operational needs
  • policy development to guide decision-making
  • modernization of staffing processes

The action plan to address Recommendation P.59 is predicated on the RCMP's renewed core values and is geared towards improving the Officer and Executive employee experience with the goal of creating sustainable management culture change. It takes into consideration the changing demographic landscape of the workforce, the complexities of leading in a policing environment, and the skills needed to do so. This includes ensuring that our senior leaders have the competencies, values, ethics and character to lead, and are representative of and accountable to RCMP employees and the communities we serve.

There are three pillars that drive the Recommendation P.59 action plan:

  1. Develop foundational policies and tools
  2. Foster sustainable management culture change
  3. Prepare leaders for the future

What follows in this first semi-annual report provides progress updates against the actions identified under the three pillars.

Pillar 1: Develop foundational policies and tools

Expected outcome: Senior management is enabled to make data and policy driven decisions that are transparent and supported by strong human resources management practices and practitioners.

Actions in support of this pillar involve the development of foundational policy pieces and tools in order to guide change and evidence-based decision making. Part of this work involves the implementation of a renewed, written, policy suite for staffing and performance and talent management of Officers and post them on RCMP's internal website. Policy requirements have been identified and the drafting of policies is underway. This will be followed by internal consultation in 2024-25 with the intent of having an approved policy suite by Spring 2025. Policies for public service Executives are already in existence (Treasury Board Secretariat policies and directives) and therefore will be used as the model for new policies for the Officer community.

Various business processes are currently under review:

Officer Candidate Process

A series of changes to streamline the administrative and assessment process to address racial and gender barriers and a decline in applications over the last 5 to 10 years were announced December 1, 2023. A second set of changes, which places a greater emphasis on assessing character leadership and potential with evaluation against RCMP Core Values and will be implemented in April 2024.

The Officer Candidate Process is the primary mechanism by which Non-Commissioned Officers express interest in and transition into the Commissioned Officer ranks.

Since the December 2023 announcement of the modernized process, 77 candidates have applied (13 women, 7 visible minorities and 4 Indigenous People) for a total of 163 applications this fiscal year - surpassing the total number of applications received each year for the past 3 years.

200 candidates and 65 managers and mentors have participated in Information Sessions on the new process and 160 board members have received some training.

Of the current list of Non-Commissioned Officers who have been successful in the Officer Candidate Process 40% self-identify as Indigenous People or as being from Visible Minority groups and 19% as francophone. Monitoring is underway to analyze the length of time they are on the list compared to members who are not from employment equity groups before being commissioned to an Inspector role.

Commissioned Officer Staffing Processes
Work was completed to improve tracking of files and streamlining of processes in order to achieve efficiency in the selection processes to fill leadership vacancies.
Experienced Police Officers

A fulsome assessment and hiring process of individuals at the Commissioned Officer ranks is under development. The intention is to capitalize on skill sets and experiences that others bring from outside the organization.

The RCMP is in the process of assessing 32 individuals for potential integration at the Commissioned Officer level. 28% of these individuals are from employment equity groups. These Officers come from municipal, provincial and federal organizations (for example, Military Police).

Chief Superintendent Assessment Boards
The initial focus for 2023-2024 was on streamlining the interview process, providing access to mentorship to candidates and building capacity with respect to those eligible to apply for Chief Superintendent roles. Candidates currently in the process are offered mentorship as they prepare for the process. Early feedback on the support provided has been positive. The focus in 2024-2025, will be on modernizing the interview assessment process, in line with recent Officer Candidate Process modernization. In the first quarter of 2024, input is being collected by all those who have participated in the process looking for feedback and insight into areas for improvement.

The focus on evidence-based decision-making and tools to enable engagement with senior management to support development of the leadership cadre has significantly increased with the implementation of the following tools and approaches:

  • Performance and Talent Management Dashboards have been produced both at the national level and for each Division and Business Line. The data was discussed at Senior Executive Committee in November 2023 and was used to inform the performance and talent management cycle for 2023-2024 as well as to identify priorities for the Officer and Executive Community. In addition, each Division and Business line received their respective dashboard with a summary of trends related to the priorities identified. Dashboard will be produced and distributed annually in the Fall.
  • An Employment Equity dashboard and report were produced and provided to Senior Executive Committee in February 2024. These will be produced on an annual basis and shared with Senior Executive Committee.
  • An Officer and Executive Workforce Dashboard was produced. This Dashboard will be produced and disseminated to Senior Executive Committee on a quarterly basis starting April 2024. The intention is to use the data in the Dashboard to inform decisions and strategies regarding staffing and succession planning, talent management, and leadership development.
  • Detailed data on the Officer Candidate Process pilot is now shared with our Senior Executive Committee in addition to sharing summary information with all employees in our weekly Bulletin.

As committed in the action plan we strengthened human resources capacity of the Executive and Officer and Resourcing team by stabilizing its organizational structure and team. To ensure stability within the management team, indeterminate appointments have been made to solidify roles which had been filled on a long-term temporary basis. The Executive and Officer and Resourcing team is comprised of a diverse team of human resources professionals, including commissioned officers, civilian members and public service employees, who together with their varied experience and expertise, provide a unique perspective of the leadership needs of the organization. The collective Executive and Officer and Resourcing team brings a wealth of corporate knowledge, along with expertise in executive staffing, performance and talent management as well human resources policies and programs. From a diversity and inclusion perspective, the stabilized team meets public service labour market availability in all areas except Indigenous Peoples where there is a gap of one person. 9% of the team self-identify as persons with disabilities and 36% self-identify as members of visible minority groups—exceeding labour market availability by 15%.

Pillar 2: Foster sustainable management culture change

Expected outcome: A leadership cadre that has the competencies, core values, ethics and character to lead, and that is more diverse, inclusive, representative of and accountable to RCMP employees and the communities we serve.

This pillar involves implementing practices and strengthening human resources programs in order to foster sustainable culture change. The Officer and Executive performance and talent management follow Treasury Board Secretariat policies and directives. There is opportunity to align RCMP practices and enable stronger performance and talent management conversations to support the development of the leadership cadre.

The performance and talent management cycle was reviewed and changes were implemented, such as more rigorous performance objectives for all Officers and Executives (August 2023), a streamlined Talent Management Questionnaire for Officers launched in January 2024, and the introduction of performance and talent review committees (March 2024) to enable not only greater visibility of each

Officer and Executive at the Division/Business line level but also at the Senior Executive Committee level. These committees ensure consistency in the application of performance ratings and talent map placements across the organization.

Tofoster a greater understanding and awareness of performance and talent management programs and associated responsibilities, an information session was delivered in both official languages in early February 2024 to 409 Officers and Executives, which is about 50% of the Officer and Executive population. Accompanying tools were produced and disseminated and the recorded sessions were posted on a newly created MS Teams Channel for the Officer and Executive Community. These sessions and tools are helping to generate conversations regarding leadership, performance and talent management and foster greater commitment towards developing the leadership cadre.

In support of fostering a more diverse and inclusive leadership cadre, Treasury Board Secretariat developed and implemented the Inclusion Stewards Initiative for public service talent management discussions at the Assistant Deputy Minister level. The purpose of this Initiative is to enhance the consistency of talent assessments and strengthen the focus on unconscious bias. This Initiative will be implemented during the RCMP talent management discussions in May 2024.

More robust equity, diversity and inclusion related commitments will be included in Officer and Executive Performance Agreements for fiscal year 2024-2025 in order to establish greater accountability to foster a diverse and inclusive leadership cadre. Work on this is set to begin Spring 2024.

Pillar 3: Prepare leaders for the future

Expected outcome: Officers and Executives are better equipped to take on senior leadership roles and are actively engaged in developing future leaders.

This pillar is focused on ensuring that officers and executives are better prepared to take on senior leadership roles by enhancing their leadership character, values and competencies, including demonstrating a commitment to continuous learning and self-reflection and taking responsibility for developing future leaders. This pillar is built on the foundational pieces identified in Pillar 1 as well as some elements of Pillar 2.

As a starting point, a pilot was developed to identify hard to fill positions (Vulnerable Positions) using artificial intelligence. The goal of this pilot is to determine Officer and Executive level positions that are hard to fill and critical to the daily operations within the RCMP and develop a succession plan accordingly. The model will then be run with data received from Talent Management Questionnaires completed in March 2024. The information gathered will be used to develop succession plans for these positions.

Focus has also been on understanding the official languages picture of the leadership cadre. Data analysis of second language evaluation results for all Officers and Executives was completed and a communication approach to encourage re-validation and plans for language training as applicable was also implemented. This aligns to the RCMP Official Languages Strategy 2023-2028, recently approved by the Senior Executive Committee.

A number of other projects such as the launch of a formal succession planning program, the expansion of leadership development program offerings and the introduction of a Leadership Development Roadmap are expected to begin next fiscal year. These projects focus on greater talent development especially as Officers and Executives prepare to take on more senior roles within the organization.

Next steps

While much work has been done to lay foundational elements over these past six months, we will shift our focus towards advancing work in a number of areas, including but not limited to:

  • policy development to guide decision-making;
  • succession planning;
  • leadership development;
  • strategic use of talent management processes;
  • accountability for fostering a diverse and inclusive leadership cadre; and
  • modernization of staffing processes.

The RCMP looks forward to providing the Management Advisory Board with its next semi-annual update regarding progress against Recommendation P.59 in September 2024.

Annex A – Action Plan (as released in the September 2023 response)

RCMP and public sector values and employee lifecycle phase Action

Pillar 1: Develop foundational policies and tools

Expected outcome: Senior management is enabled to make data and policy driven decisions that are transparent and supported by strong human resources management practices and practitioners.

Take responsibility

Stewardship

Develop

Establish integrated policies for Officer Candidate Process and Officer staffing, performance, and talent management and communicate them

Serve with excellence

Excellence

Attract, recruit, develop, retain

Further invest in data analytics and business intelligence in order to gain greater understanding of the officer and executive Community demographics, including a review and analysis of employee surveys

Serve with excellence

Excellence

Attract, recruit, onboard, develop, retain, offboard

Strengthen human resources capacity of the executive and officer development and resourcing team

Pillar 2: Foster sustainable management culture change

Expected outcome: A leadership cadre that has the competencies, core values, ethics and character to lead, and that is more diverse, inclusive, representative of and accountable to our employees and the communities we serve.

Take responsibility and show respect

Respect for people

Develop and retain

Enable stronger performance and talent management conversations regarding the Non-Commissioned Officer, Commissioned Officer and Executive cadre with senior management

Take responsibility and show respect

Respect for people

Develop and retain

Review and update senior management competencies

Explore a new Job Simulation Exercise at the senior management levels

Serve with excellence

Excellence

Develop and retain

Expand the sources of input collected for performance management beginning at the Deputy Commissioner, Assistant Deputy Minister and Commanding Officer levels

Demonstrate compassion

Respect for people

Attract, recruit, onboard, develop, retain

Recruitment and Promotion of Employment Equity and Equity Seeking Officers and Executives

Continuous training on equity, diversity and inclusion

Incorporate equity, diversity and inclusion considerations into performance and talent management and succession planning processes and practices

Pillar 3: Prepare leaders for the future

Expected outcome: Officers and executives are better equipped to take on senior leadership roles and are actively engaged in developing future leaders.

Show respect and demonstrate compassion

Respect for people

Onboard and retain

Develop and implement an Onboarding Program for new officers and executives, which includes incorporation of obligations to set the standard for the workplace, protect employees of the workforce from inappropriate or offensive conduct and to protect the employer from exposure to civil claims by individual claimants

Take responsibility

Stewardship

Develop and retain

Develop and implement a succession planning program

Serve with excellence

Excellence

Develop and retain

Review leadership development programs catalogue

Serve with excellence

Excellence

Develop and retain

Develop and disseminate a Leadership Development Roadmap

Demonstrate compassion

Respect for people

Develop and retain

Develop and implement an Official Languages Training and Maintenance Strategy

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