CSCSC e-Newsletter

September 17, 2007

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NOC Codes – CSCSC Involved in Updates for 2011
In our April 2007 newsletter, we featured information about National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes. Our purpose was to explain the system to assist our partners and stakeholders in aligning their labour market questions with the federal government’s coding system used for statistics collection and analysis.
As a Council, we continue to be engaged in the process of education about and further development of NOCs related to our sector. As a result, we participated in a recent workshop that helped to outline the system and its use.
The NOC system describes Canadians’ occupations. It gives statisticians, labour market analysts, career counsellors, employers and individual job seekers a standardized way of describing and understanding the responsibilities related to specific work roles. A series of NOC-related publications helps people to organize and use statistics and other labour market facts.
This classification tool was implemented in 1992 as a replacement for the Canadian Classification and Dictionary of Occupations (CCDO). It was created through an extensive program of research, collecting information from employers, workers, educators and associations. Analyses and consultations were also conducted with providers and users of labour market data across the country. Human Resources Development Canada (now Human Resources and Social Development Canada, HRSDC) worked closely with Statistics Canada to ensure strong links between the NOC and Statistics Canada’s Standard Occupational Classification (SOC), for the collection and use of labour market data.
The NOC is updated on a regular basis through an ongoing program of research. This results in updates or revisions that coincide with five-year Census cycles. The NOC was most recently updated using Census 2006 information, in collaboration with Statistics Canada. This was a minor update and is available online. Research continues for the 20th anniversary of the NOC, which will result in the release of a revised NOC for Census 2011. Structural changes and significant content revisions are expected for this edition.
The NOC provides a standardized language for describing the work performed by Canadians. It is used at all stages of the process from defining and collecting data, to managing information databases, to analyzing labour market trends and extracting practical career-planning information.
Data Collection
The hierarchical coding structure of the NOC is used in the collection of occupational information. For example, economists and statisticians use the NOC to guide the collection and compilation of data. And, the Government of Canada uses the NOC-S (the NOC for Statistics) for the analysis of occupational data collected from the Census, Labour Force Survey and other surveys.
The NOC is also used for a variety of special surveys with respect to worker mobility, technological change, administrative data and other indicators of labour market behaviour. In addition, provincial governments and private survey companies use the NOC to ensure that the information they collect will be directly comparable to data they get from other sources.
Labour Market Analysis
Labour market researchers use the NOC to understand the underpinnings of the statistics they use and, more importantly, to interpret them correctly. The NOC provides the context for the interpretation of statistical information. These users analyze the Canadian labour market to understand emerging trends, to guide policy decisions and to develop systems for training, recruiting and job matching. National, regional and local labour market information can be accessed by visiting
Labour market analyses include work done within the government to set policy and make the labour market work more efficiently. For example, the federal government uses this type of analysis to allocate spending for labour market programs, to manage its systems for matching jobs with people and for immigration-selection procedures. Provincial and municipal governments have similar applications.
Career Planning and Job Seeking
Career developers, counsellors and students use the NOC and the Career Handbook for career planning. An understanding of occupational definitions, requirements and opportunities is central to their goal of matching the interests and aptitudes of individuals to the requirements and opportunities associated with occupations.
The Council uses the NOC to help put its labour market needs into context. This ensures that we have a level playing field when describing the occupations that are part of our sector and in calculating the size and relative demands of our labour market. The NOC also ensures that we speak the same language as government when it comes to employment trends and StatsCan data.
As partners in our sector, you should be aware of the 26 NOC codes we currently promote as the occupations in our sector. This information can be found on page 2 of our Sector Facts and Figures sheet. As well, we are currently working to link employment data provided by HRSDC to our NOC-coded applications on our website through a partnership with the federal government. (Look for more details on this initiative in a future edition of this bulletin.) As mentioned above, we are part of the process to revise NOC codes for 2011. If you want to be involved in this initiative, please contact Kevin Maynard directly.
The CSCSC Collaborates With Other Sector Councils on the Development of an Online Virtual Human Resources Department
Over the last several months, the Council has been actively engaged in the development of an online tool that will enable small and medium-sized supply chain organizations to access a toolkit of useful HR resources. The kit, planned for launch in early 2008, will include samples of policy handbooks and practical templates for both processes and documents. The platform for this pioneering product has been produced by the Plastics Sector Council, the leader of the collaborative. A proposal for funding is under development for our partners at HRSDC.
This unique sector-focused tool responds to the key strategic work outlined in our sector study and speaks to the need to harness best practices in the area of HR policy and processes for SMEs in our sector. The desire for a toolkit was echoed in the LMI workshops held by the Council this spring.
To find out more about the VHRD, visit Plastics.
CSCSC Promotes the Sector with Ads, Career-fair Booth
The Council is running ads in two quite different publications in the fall, with messages reaching, in one case, students, teachers and counsellors, and, in the second case, business people. Our ad (presented in both English and French) in Canada Prospects focuses on supply chain careers generally, and will be included in the more than one million copies that will be circulated Canada-wide to career-development professionals, guidance counsellors, job developers, teachers and youth. The second ad, to be published on September 22 in a supply chain feature of Les Affaires, a French-language business newspaper, promotes awareness of the CSCSC’s new education database.
The Council also plans to be present at at least three fall job fairs:
  1. September 25 and 26, Toronto, Ont. – The National Job Fair and Training Expo, at which the Council's booth will be manned by representatives of several of the sector's pillar associations – APICS, CIFFA, CITT and SCL – is anticipating attendance of up to 10,000 people.
  2. September 26, Waterloo, Ont. – This career fair, sponsored by Partnerships for Employment (a collaborative effort of the University of Guelph, University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University and Conestoga College), is expected to attract approximately 3,000 students and alumni.
  3. November 14, Simcoe, Ont. – The Destination... Success! career fair of the Grand Erie Training and Adjustment Board is designed to be a hands-on, fun day of career exploration for youth.

Past Issues of Update Reports

New-format newsletters, starting with the August 2007 issue, can be seen on the Council’s website, on their own page – the “e-newsletters” page – in the Publications and Resources section. Update reports released before August are on a separate page – the “update reports” page – in the same section.

Getting Students Interested in and Prepared for Careers in the Supply Chain

Here we present information from groups across Canada that have come up with innovative and effective ways to, among other things, build student awareness of careers in the supply chain and prepare students to embark on those careers.
The first in this series of articles looks at the Joint Learning Initiative of Alberta, with information from JLI’s Project Lead, Linda Lucas. Further information about the organization can be had by contacting Linda, at, or by visiting JLI’s website, at
The Joint Learning Initiative: Developing Canada’s Skilled Workforce Through Broad, P3 Partnerships and Collaborations
For the last seven years, individuals and organizations from education, government and industry have been working together across Alberta and beyond to develop and articulate a career pathway in supply chain logistics through the collaborative efforts of the grassroots project known as the Joint Learning Initiative. Each JLI partner has contributed something to the whole as we have created a model for broad-based collaboration and have searched for ways to build a skilled workforce in supply chain logistics. The JLI value statement indicates that we are interested in the power of ‘synergies, not silos and collaboration, not competition’.
We are searching for ways to bring young people into this industry, to develop people who are problem solvers and who can make things happen, and to create an awareness of and interest in the field of supply chain logistics as a sector of choice.
Addressing Canada’s challenges:
  • To connect economic prosperity and education
  • To create high-performance, innovative economies
  • To move from an industrial/agricultural economy to a global, knowledge-based economy
  • To connect and articulate programs into career pathways
  • To build a preferred future for all Canadians

The Joint Learning Initiative mission

To demonstrate the power of broad, cross-sectoral partnerships that:
  • Connect all levels of education, industry and government
  • Combine individual partner efforts, knowledge and resources
  • Create shared purpose, collective action and efficiencies through collaboration
  • Build a skilled Canadian workforce through an articulated, lifelong learning continuum

The JLI as a model and a high-performance innovation tool:

  • For students – relevant, engaged learning
  • For parents – meaningful career choices and post-secondary opportunities for their children
  • For teachers and school systems – a process for educational change and renewal
  • For the community – a way to keep youth within a community, thereby ensuring future growth
  • For post-secondaries – connections to high-school programs and the attraction of keen learners; program growth; reduction of drop-out rates
  • For industry – attraction and retention of skilled workers; development of internal training programs
  • For government – economic growth at all levels; reduction of unemployment; development of a skilled workforce; ability to compete at a global level

The JLI value proposition:

  • Collaboration, not competition; synergies, not silos
  • Capture, link and share partner resources, expertise and knowledge
  • Create a repeatable, scalable, customizable model for building learning communities
  • Demonstrate flexible delivery of learning, through a variety of methods and technology integration, including online learning
  • Demand and build educator capacity through accredited, professional training programs
  • Demonstrate a lifelong learning continuum and how a career pathway connects to professional accreditation
  • Connect workplace learning to academic study: high school to post-secondary, applied degrees, MBAs and professional accreditation
  • Draw young people into entry-level positions and adult workers into industry-based instruction and professional training

What the JLI has accomplished…so far:

  • The development of a career pathway model and demonstration project in supply chain logistics that includes K-20 and professional accreditation leading to the P.Log. designation
  • Five entry-level, accredited and updated courses in multiple delivery formats
  • A communication and marketing plan that includes multiple presentations nationally and internationally, a website and resource materials
  • A successful, Alberta Education-sponsored, professional-development program for educators, and resources for new high-school programs
  • A JLI-hosted supply chain logistics-community celebration – the “Show and Tell Dinner”
  • An Alberta Employment, Immigration and Industry-sponsored, web-based case study about the ‘Logistics of Bananas’
  • National and international awards, including the Stockholm Challenge in 2005

Work in progress:

  • “Supply Chain Logistics as a Leading Solution to Canadian Environmental Issues: Planning for and Adapting to the Disruption of Key Canadian Supply Chains as a Result of Manmade or Potential Environmental Events and Climate Change” – working with partners that include the Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council, the JLI is developing and will host this national conference to be held in Calgary on May 26 and 27, 2008.

Added-value Communication in the Supply Chain

First in a Series
By Chris Irwin, MBA
Sr. Consultant, Ignite Excellence

“We plan to continue our strategy of targeted price reduction and improvements to the structure of the business, which are likely to continue putting pressure on margins,” executive-chairman Galen G. Weston told analysts on a conference call.

Reported in the Financial Post, July 27, 2007
Where is the supply chain more vital than in perishable-food distribution? Given its market position, the above statement from Galen Weston about the direction of the Loblaw Companies grocery-store chain should resonate with all key stakeholder groups, including investors, suppliers, employees and customers. It would, however, be naïve to think – or even hope – that these groups would form identical impressions upon hearing this statement.
Externally, the impression fleshes out more quickly and clearly: revenue numbers and stock prices are strong indicators of consumer and investment-community sentiment. Internally, the story is different. Understanding and managing the perceptions of internal stakeholders is crucial for operational changes to take root and deliver on the potential to increase competitiveness. Rather than “internal stakeholders,” let’s use the more common “employees, co-workers and bosses” to reference this group, who are the individuals in the middle of the “improvements” to the “structure” of the organization.
What might they say?
  • Fictitious Employee #1: “Isn’t it great to work for a company that is responsive to the changing environment? This is why I have loved every minute of my past 25 years at this place; the management here has always been one step ahead of the game. It is never easy, but I am prepared for some short-term pain in order to make the most of the long-term gain.”
  • Fictitious Employee #2: “Oh yeah, I have seen these restructurings before. That is actually how I ended up working in this industry. You know, it’s a totally different product, but it really is quite similar to where I came from. If I learned one thing about the restructuring last time: there is some benefit to prolonging the process, if you know what I mean. Fix it too fast, and you find yourself with a pink slip in your hand sooner rather than later. I won’t make that mistake again!”

Experiences Drive Our Perceptions

The above fictitious quotes illustrate how strongly an individual’s past experiences shape perceptions of any situation. Whether they were formed from childhood, previous jobs or experiences outside work, the values that we carry today have been formed by everything that happened to us previously. Do you “eat everything on your plate”? If you do, chances are that was a value in the environment in which you grew up. Even so, you may not have adopted or changed this value based on other experiences. These values are completely individual.
When Ignite Excellence works with clients on effective internal communications, we give people skills and sensitivities to understand different paradigms (e.g., is the glass half empty or half full?), as well as their experience values (e.g., past experiences that shape their views today). A boss, team leader or co-worker will be much better equipped to deal with our two friends above, if he or she has an understanding of where they are coming from and “what makes them tick.”
The orientation of either person could limit the success of improvements. For example, by giving the corporate direction too much benefit of the doubt, employees like Fictitious Employee #1 could hinder the unfiltered feedback that operational-process change requires from those on the floor. On the other hand, the insecurity of someone like Fictitious Employee #2 related to how he or she might benefit or suffer from the change can create a hidden agenda that may never be understood.
There are a number of strong and proven initiatives that can deliver dramatic efficiencies in the supply/value chain of companies and their networks of suppliers and contributors. Understanding a person’s orientation and motivation is necessary to be able to communicate this change clearly and effectively in a manner that they will receive and understand.
Fundamentals in human interaction – up, down and across the organization – can be very effective in fostering the honest communication that is necessary for the right kind of change to take root. Asking the right questions, really listening to people, and managing relationships to deal with conflict and create rapport allow for honest communication. Later in this series, we will cover the various elements that contribute to effective communication of change. Nowhere is this more critical than for those operating in Canada’s supply chain sector.
Chris Irwin is a Senior Consultant with Ignite Excellence Inc., a training and development consultancy specializing in persuasive communications. Maximizing the effectiveness of internal communication (including in a supply chain) is one of Ignite Excellence’s areas of expertise for communications-skill development.

CME’s “Business Takes Action” Takes Aim at Labour Shortage

Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters has issued a challenge to Canadian employers that should help to alleviate some of the labour shortages that are becoming an increasing feature of our economy. By the year 2020, the CME hopes that 10 percent of all new hires will be persons with disabilities that are qualified to take on the responsibilities they’re assigned. By opening up the labour market to disabled individuals, Canadian firms will benefit from the skills of an often-overlooked group.
The “Business Takes Action” initiative – also known as the “10/20 Challenge” – fits in with the CME’s comprehensive “Manufacturing 20/20” vision to strengthen Canada’s manufacturing base by 2020.
Top action items resulting from the 20/20 consultations include:
  • An initiative to change the image of the manufacturing industry to attract a wide pool of candidates
  • Development of workforce strategies that are proactive and innovative to resolve the issues of skills shortages
  • Strengthening of collaborative relations between a wide variety of groups
  • Implementation of innovative solutions in the workplace to continually upgrade skills and competencies of employees.

As part of the response to these requirements, CME is promoting outreach to the untapped labour market of qualified individuals within the community, including persons with disabilities, to expand innovation in the area of human capital. In meeting the 10/20 Challenge, Canadian firms would be taking a step toward future business prosperity, mitigating anticipated labour shortages to ensure they remain productive and competitive.

The CME is available to provide support as follows to companies that are working to achieve 10/20 status:
  • A one-stop-access website
  • Linkages to a qualified labour pool
  • Policies and procedures to implement an accommodative workforce
  • Up-to-date news on relevant policies
  • Access to educated, knowledgeable and supportive personnel to mentor a firm’s human resource personnel, supervisors and staff
  • Best-practice information

New Legislation in Ontario
Legislation in Ontario – the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (2005) (AODA) – will ensure that all Ontarians with disabilities have full access to goods, services, facilities, accommodation, employment, building structures and premises by January 1, 2025. Accessibility standards will be set in the areas of customer service, the built environment, information and communications, employment and transportation. Information about the Act and its implications is available at

By now putting in place practices and procedures to allow for the hiring of disabled persons, Ontario employers will be prepared to deal with the requirements of the Accessibility Act well in advance of its deadline. The CME is a resource for information and assistance that employers can use to stay ahead of the curve.
For more information about the 10/20 Challenge or the AODA, contact the CME:
Jo Walks, Program Manager, Accessibility Project –, 905-672-3466, ext. 3255
Kirsten Barnes, Communication and Events Coordinator –, 905-672-3466, ext. 3280

Can You Help?

Reaching Students with Supply Chain-Career Information
(Sorry – this one is for women only!)
WOW! – Words on Work – is a women’s speakers bureau, part of The Learning Partnership, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to bringing together business, education, government, labour, policy makers and the community to develop partnerships that strengthen public education in Canada. WOW! is a program that benefits students from grades 4 to 12 as they consider their future career destinations and educational pathways.
WOW! showcases successful women from diverse career destinations, exposing students to a broad range of potential future careers. Women who are interested in speaking with student groups should contact Sharon Stephenson-Avery, WOW! Program Manager, at 416-440-5100, ext. 5018, or More information about the program can be accessed at
ESL Students Seeking Co-op Placements in Trucking Companies
Reprinted with permission from Canadian Transportation & Logistics magazine, August 10
By Adam Ledlow
KITCHENER, Ont. – English as a Second Language (ESL) learners attending a special program designed to prepare them for trucking careers are seeking co-op experience inside trucking companies. Students in the program are working towards careers as truck drivers, mechanics, dispatchers, safety officers and other industry-related positions.
The students have experience speaking English at in intermediate level and are seeking to enhance their working knowledge of trucking language to help them pass the driver training and driver licensing requirements, or to go on to other related forms of higher learning.
Co-op placements are sought for six-week periods. Placements would ideally expose participants to many aspects of the trucking industry, including yard and loading; safety and compliance; routing and dispatch; shop/garage, and driving.
For more information, call Brian Malott, an ESL Instructor at St. Louis Adult and Continuing Education Centre, at 519-569-8768.
Learn @ Work Week, September 24 to 28
The week-long Learn @ Work Week celebration, a national initiative of the Canadian Society for Training and Development, includes activities and events to promote the importance of workplace learning and performance. The goals of this initiative are:
  • To raise awareness of the impact of workplace learning
  • To celebrate the best practices of workplace learning
  • To celebrate the success of the 'learning organization'

All 18 chapters of the CSTD across Canada are holding special events during the week. Find out more about the program at


Coming Events

Event in the Spotlight
Highway H2O Conference, November 7 and 8, Toronto
Conference Sessions:
Bulk Cargo
  • An overview of the global bulk-cargo market
  • Facilities and handling requirements within the ports
  • Alternative-fuel projects
  • To what extent can Hwy H2O and the marine mode play a role in this industry?

Project Cargo

  • Significant potential for the future of the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System
    Inbound and outbound project cargoes
  • Where is this market headed and why are the Great Lakes ports well positioned to continue to take advantage of it?
  • Special look at the dismantling of a refinery and its shipment abroad for reassembly

Corporate Social Responsibility

  • Impact of corporate operations on the communities where business is conducted and on the environment at large
  • How the marine industry can enhance its environmental performance and minimize its footprint
  • What type of programs have already been put in place?
  • Do shippers consider environmental performance an important benefit when deciding on supply chain solutions?
  • The importance of raising awareness of the benefits of the marine mode and how marine-industry stakeholders, such as port authorities, can engage the interest and support of local communities

Supply Chain Management

  • Examination from multiple perspectives
  • Shipping freight on Hwy H2O has the potential to add significant value to the supply chain, particularly in terms of reliability and environmental performance
  • What are the supply chain requirements for large corporations and their suppliers?

Registration fee: $425 plus GST, with discount available for Highway H2O port partners and members. For information or to register, visit or contact

Other Events

©2018 Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council
©2018 Conseil canadien sectoriel de la chaîne d'approvisionnement