Audit of Corporate Business Planning - Follow-up Report Status Update as of March 31, 2014

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Action Plan Implementation Status Update Report to the Audit Committee - As of March 31, 2014

Policy and Strategic Direction

Audit of Corporate Business Planning
Approval Date: 11-21-2013
   Project Recommendations       Action Plan    Expected
   Completion Date   
   Program  Response   
1. The Senior Assistant Deputy Minister of PSD Sector should take further steps to collaborate with the CFO Sector and HRWSB to better align the timing of planning activities and, within available resources, develop business planning processes that effectively integrate resource requirements associated with priorities and planning commitments and should ensure that processes support horizontal alignment across sector business plans when there is shared accountability and where dependencies among sectors exist. PSD has taken steps to support better alignment and timing of planning activities as demonstrated through the formation of an integrated planning working group with CFO and HRWSB.

Since the completion of the audit work the working group has already been able to align the IM/IT, Investment and Procurement plans time lines, as well as the Business, Resource and HR plans time lines through two integrated process launches for the 2014-15 fiscal year.

The Sr ADM of PSD will explore further opportunities to better integrate planning processes and products, with input from the CFO and the DG HRWSB, such that the resource requirements associated with priorities and planning commitments are properly considered. 

Further, PSD will adjust departmental business planning processes in support of enhanced horizontal alignment of sector business plans where there are shared accountabilities and where dependencies among sectors exist.
March 31, 2015  
2. The Senior Assistant Deputy Minister of PSD Sector should develop support mechanisms (e.g. additional training, guidance in establishing and implementing new processes, tools, etc.) within available resources, and provide sectors with additional guidance for the development of efficient and effective planning processes. PSD will seek input from and provide regular and ongoing direct and indirect support to the departmental planning community through various means (Corporate Results-based Management Directorate Staff, Senior Strategic Outcome Analysts (SSOAs), frameworks and support associated with the streamlining of the PAA and PMF, and through planning fora, such as the Integrated Planning, Reporting, Management and Accountability Forum (IPRMAF), which includes representatives from across all Sectors and Regions, including CFO and HRWSB).

The Sr ADM of PSD, with input from the CFO and the DG HRWSB, will pursue means to support more efficient and effective planning processes by :
  • developing additional and new/revised tools, training and guidance
  • developing a planning calendar
  • identifying and sharing best practices and lessons learned
Sept 2014  
3. The Senior Assistant Deputy Minister of PSD Sector should, within available resources, develop and implement a governance framework that supports quality assurance and oversight by defining the expectations of sectors as they develop their business plans, by providing support through the review of plans for quality and consistency, and by addressing the alignment of shared priorities and resource requirements across sector plans. Business planning is an integral part of coordinating and aligning functions to deliver on results and to manage competing priorities within available resources. To ensure quality control and consistency, PSD provides, in addition to planning templates, appropriate guidance to the planning community.

The Sr ADM of PSD, with input from the integrated planning working group as needed, will study the governance of business planning and business plans and the linkages to current sector and corporate level governance bodies.  The outcome of the study will be to identify opportunities to improve consistency in the quality and detail of sector business plans and define expectations for quality assurance and for departmental oversight, and   alignment of common/cross-cutting priorities and resource requirements. PSD will provide individual support to sectors requiring additional guidance to achieve the expected level of quality.
Sept 2014  
4. The Senior Assistant Deputy Minister of PSD Sector should facilitate the development of Department-wide expectations, and a corresponding strategy, for business planning across AANDC, and, within available resources, develop broad guidance (e.g. guidelines) to support sectors in optimizing the value of planning in their own context and promote Department-wide consistency required to enable aligned and integrated plans. PSD, in partnership with CFO and HRWSB, created an integrated planning working group to develop mechanisms to support greater integration of planning throughout the department.

In the interest of streamlining work and integrating planning, PSD/CFO/HRWSB jointly brought to Senior Management Committee in October 2013, a common approach for business planning, which SMC endorsed for the 2013-14 cycle. PSD/CFO/HRWSB support Sectors and Regions by providing annual planning guidance, as well as analysis and feedback on plans, both draft and final.

PSD further directly supports Sectors and Regions by offering advice through the Senior Strategic Outcome Analyst (SSOA) model as well as through corporate interactions with planners. PSD also disseminates information and lessons learned via the Integrated Planning, Reporting, Management and Accountability Forum (IPRMAF), which includes representatives from across all Sectors and Regions, including CFO and HRWSB.
  Status: Underway

Update/Rationale:
As of 31/03/2014:

As of March 31, 2014) The 2014-15 guidance had already been disseminated to support the development of the 2014-15 Business Plans. The 2015-16 guidance to support the next business planning cycle is in evolution and represents the output of an integrated planning approach which itself is being development. To that end, the Integrated Planning Working Group has met five times in the past months to address the recommendations of the audit on Corporate Business Planning.

It became every apparent over the course of the first three meetings that there was not a standard understanding of the specific planning elements across the internal services functions. To address this, a series of knowledge transfer sessions were conducted to bring all members of the working group to a common understanding of the various planning elements thereby permitting the starting point for the development of an incremental approach to integrated planning.

The results of the Business Plan standardized assessment tool (described below) being used on the 2014-15 business plans will influence the guidance and expectation setting for 2015-16. The 2015-16 Business Planning guidance will be issued in the fall of 2014, as per the business planning cycle.

Draft products have been created, which will be discussed at the working group, and upon a satisfactory review, will form part of the guidance and supporting toolkit in aid of strengthening our planning capacity across the department.

One issue that the working group has encountered is the reality that despite guidance having being produced for the last business plan process; the business plans received have varying degrees of compliance with the guidance and templates.

AES: On going

Request to Close (Completed)
(As of March 31, 2014) Following consultations with the Integrated Planning Working Group, PSD has developed a standardized assessment template for business plans and has begun to test it to assess the 2014-15 sector/region business plans.

AES: Recommend to close

Request to Close (Completed)
(As of March 31, 2014) The Integrated Planning Working Group has consulted with DFO in regards to their "One-Pass Planning" and a decision was made not to implement such a model because it is not an integrated planning model, but rather a single call letter for multiple planning and reporting processes. Additionally, the DFO model does not integrate financial information into business plans.

AES: Recommend to close
The Sr ADM of PSD with input from the CFO and the DG HRWSB, will develop guidance to support the maturation/evolution of business planning within the Department, with clearly communicated objectives and expectations of business planning. Mar 2014
The integrated planning working group will develop a standardized assessment template for business plans, which will serve as a quality-control checklist; identifying strengths, best practices, weaknesses, opportunities for streamlining, and opportunities for alignment with departmental priorities.

The working group will also explore the applicability of "One-Pass Planning" as currently used in DFO.
Nov 2013
 
 
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