CSCSC e-Newsletter

October 30, 2012

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Council News

Career Focus Program Spots Still Available... But Only Until November 30
Welcome new talent to your team with a subsidy from the CSCSC. The Career Focus Program provides 50 percent of the funds for companies to hire new supply chain employees. The $1-for-$1 funding available through the program is not provided as a loan; there is nothing to pay back. It is a wage subsidy with no strings attached, and it's easy to apply for and manage.
To be subsidized under the Council's Career Focus Program, a potential employee must be:
  • 30 or younger;
  • new to the company applying for the subsidy;
  • a post-secondary graduate (i.e., a graduate of a university, college, association or private-sector program) and out of school;
  • a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident or a person who has been granted refugee status in Canada, and legally entitled to work in Canada; and,
  • not in receipt of Employment Insurance (EI) benefits during the intern placement period.

Applications must be received by November 30; the program requires a minimum four-month commitment and ends on March 31, 2013.

Important noteParticipant placements cannot begin before the agreement between the Council and the employer is signed by both parties.
Go to to get more information or to apply.

New Accreditations and First Renewals through National Accreditation Program
Now three years old, the Council's National Accreditation Program has begun to see accreditation-renewal applications from the first education providers to have been accredited. Accreditations are valid for three years, and must be reviewed and reapproved to avoid expiry. On October 5, the Accreditation Review Panel (ARP) renewed accreditations of seven programs, offered by the Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association (2), Centennial College of Applied Arts and Technology, Mount Royal University, the Purchasing Management Association of Canada (2) and Sheridan College.
On the same date, the ARP granted new accreditations of two programs offered by triOS College: Supply Chain and Logistics, and Supply Chain and Logistics with Internship. These accreditations bring the total number of accredited offerings across Canada to 47. A list of all accredited programs and courses can be seen on the Council's Accredited Programs and Courses page.

Supply Chain Month with Junior Achievement
In January 2013, supply chain volunteers across Canada will deliver the Junior Achievement "Economics for Success" program to students in grade 8 or 9, thanks to financial support provided by stakeholders through the Council's Don Borsk Canadian Supply Chain Career Awareness Fund. Volunteer placements will occur in a minimum of eight regions, from Victoria to Halifax.
"Economics for Success" focuses on the world of work and includes a look at career options, job readiness, budgeting and more. Throughout the school-day-long session, presenters will have opportunities to enhance the curriculum with stories of their own experiences in the supply chain and information about the sector. They are encouraged to bring the material to life in a way that teachers possibly could not.
Depending on the region, one, two or even three volunteers will deliver the program to a classful of students and their teacher. The cost to do so also varies across the country: While the program-sponsorship fee for some JA charters is $500, it is up to $1,000 for others. The sponsorship fee covers the charters' costs for volunteer training, and teacher and student manuals.
After the Supply Chain Month in January, the Council will continue to coordinate regular volunteer placements across Canada as funds allow. One hundred percent of donations to the Don Borsk Fund will be used for volunteer placements; the Council does not keep a share of the contributions for its coordination efforts. Donations are tax-deductible and are helpful in any size; even $5 will support this cross-Canada sectoral outreach to students.
The number 1 recommendation for the Council in its 2012 HR Study Update report is to:
Continue existing outreach efforts in high schools and encourage promotion of the sector among high school guidance counsellors and other key influence agents such as parents, peers, and others.
This recommendation – and its #1 ranking – is a reflection of stakeholders' repeated expression of the need to address labour shortages by spreading the word to young people about supply chain careers. Our partnership with JA provides an outstanding opportunity to do that in a meaningful way. Although we may reach only one class at a time, volunteers are able to spend a full day with the students to share their enthusiasm for work in this sector.
Volunteers gain from working with JA, as well. Among others, they develop presentation, communication, team-building and leadership skills.
To support the Council in this effort, you or your organization* could provide a financial donation, volunteer to deliver a program in your area, or both. Learn more at
*The Purchasing Management Association of Canada is a supporter: Instead of providing gifts to speakers at recent events, PMAC has donated to the Don Borsk Fund. The Canadian Public Procurement Council has committed to do the same after its November annual conference.

The Business Case for Hiring Skilled Immigrants poses the question, "What is the business case for hiring skilled immigrants?" in a new video. Watch it to find out how Canadian employers, regardless of size or location, can benefit from hiring skilled immigrants.

Peel Halton Workforce Survey

The Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council has partnered with the Peel Halton Workforce Development Group to implement a survey of employers located in Peel and Halton Regions in Ontario. Together with a broad collection of municipal economic-development offices, chambers of commerce/boards of trade, employment-service providers and similar organizations focused on the local labour market, we are hoping to reach a significant number of employers.
The purpose of the survey is to better understand your workforce concerns, from finding qualified job applicants to supporting career development within your organization.
The results of the survey will assist public, non-profit and private-sector training, recruitment and employment-placement organizations to better meet the needs of local employers. We will be publicizing the results of the survey so that you can see how your practices and challenges compare with those of other firms in your area.
If you are an employer located in Peel or Halton Region, please complete this confidential survey. It should take no more than 15 minutes. Your input will help us better understand the workforce challenges faced by employers.

Do You Qualify for a TRIEC Immigrant Success Award?

If your organization is based in the greater Toronto region, then it’s likely that someone on your team is an immigrant. You’ve probably navigated cross-cultural communication or workplace-integration challenges and developed solutions. You and your staff have a story to tell – and your story can help other organizations.
The TRIEC Immigrant Success (IS) Awards recognize leadership and innovation in recruiting and retaining skilled immigrants. TRIEC is seeking stories of organizations and individuals who turn immigrant integration into a basis of their success – people who see our multicultural workforce as an asset and use it to gain competitive advantages and success. Past winners have leveraged their award into considerable media exposure, offering employers a unique brand-building opportunity as an employer of choice for skilled immigrant talent. As well, they inspire employers with new approaches for integrating skilled immigrant talent into the workplace.
There are four TRIEC IS awards:
  1. The CBC Immigrant Advantage Award, for an organization that demonstrates the business impact of leveraging immigrant skills
  2. The RBC Immigrant Advantage Award for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises
  3. The Toronto Star Award for Excellence in Workplace Integration, recognizing an implemented immigrant employment practice that is transforming the organization
  4. The Canadian HR Reporter Individual Achievement Award, recognizing an individual making strides in helping an organization become more open and inclusive
Nominations (including self-nominations) are accepted online at Only a short description of your organization is required to kick-off the nomination process. The deadline for entries is November 15.

What Did We Learn, Palmer?

By Chris Irwin, MBA

If you have seen the Cohen brothers’ movie Burn After Reading, you will recall my title is the second-last quotable-in-polite-company line from that movie. The last one is, “It’s hard to say.” This movie scene may not be the most realistic example of a debrief discussion, but these types of conversations provide excellent opportunities to evaluate the two most important parts of a distinct workplace activity:
  • Past intention: What were we trying to do?
  • Past event: What actually happened?
This can help to determine two equally important things:
  • Current/future event: What do we do now (like, right now, if anything)?
  • Future intention: What will we do differently next time?
Such debrief, or “post mortem,” meetings can be very beneficial for sharing different interpretations of history, which can be a great teacher. The answers to the second set of questions may be a little trickier to surface.

NOTE: Watch for regulations born in the heat of a particularly aggravating Past Event. (“OK, that is it. We are never, I repeat never, sole sourcing anything again … ever!” does not make a great template for an SOP amendment.)

Consider these debrief elements in a situation where the Marketing department lead has just run an event that needed to sidestep a number of procurement procedures because of an aggressive timeline.

The discussions of past intentions would clarify that Marketing was trying to generate some awareness with potential customers and supporters. The counter to this would demonstrate that Purchasing was trying to uphold the agreed-upon procedures to ensure the integrity of the process and to stay “on side” with governance, public scrutiny, and so on.

Understanding the different intentions is helpful.

The trading of perspectives as to what transpired would reveal Marketing’s side of the story: “We pulled off an outstanding event despite constantly hitting procedural roadblocks with Purchasing. We were a little over budget, but everyone got paid.” Juxtapose this with Purchasing’s view: “The process was highly compromised. We had received invoices before vendors were even set up in the system. We suspect that we significantly overpaid for some of the services provided, etc.”

Telling your side can be cathartic. Listening to the other side should be educational. (Unless things are really bad, these should not need outside facilitation.)

In the absence of immediate issues, the parties would probably part ways agreeing to act differently next time. There may even be apologies in the spirit of fostering good inter-department relations. Unless explicitly identified, there is a risk that the lessons learned run along these lines:
  • Purchasing: I really think they “get” how our policies actually help the business.
  • Marketing: See?! The rules are there, but when something needs to get done, we can get it done.

If you are not going to use a facilitator to keep the process rigorous, you can take a page from the Cohen brothers and make “what did we learn?” an overt part of the post-mortem meetings. Push each other beyond “it is hard to say,” because these moments can provide an opportunity to identify and maybe address some recurring conflicts that create the cycle of uncomfortable post-mortems.

Chris Irwin is the Managing Partner for the Canadian practice of Creative Connection Consultants (, who work with companies to release superior performance by understanding the organizational narrative. He is on faculty at the Schulich School of Business. He also teaches in PMAC’s Strategic Supply Chain Management Leadership Program. He can be reached through this website


Website Links


Coming Events

Event in the Spotlight
Wood Manufacturing Council
November 6, Toronto, Ont.

Participants in this half-day, hands-on, free workshop, to be presented by international trade expert Bob Armstrong on Tuesday, November 6th, will examine importing best practices, international commercial terms, trade documents, the reverse supply chain, planning, production, delivery and inventory management. It will prepare them to take advantage of the growing international market for Canadian products.
Workshop space will be limited; anyone who wants to participate should register online. Pre-registered participants may attend a free networking breakfast at 8 am and lunch at noon.
Those who register for the seminar can participate in an optional tour of the Supply Chain Management Inc. distribution centre in Mississauga. Free return charter transportation will be provided.
The Van Horne Institute
November 22, Calgary, Alta.
Recent national and Alberta-based labour market studies indicate that there are current supply chain labour shortages and that Alberta will encounter even greater shortages of skilled supply chain employees over the next decade. Where will these skilled workers come from and can the supply chain sector compete with other sectors for already-scarce human resources? 
The Van Horne Institute and its partners, ELLE and Associates and the Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council, have answered this call to action by shaping a series of events designed to focus on women as an untapped human resource within the supply chain sector.

Whether you are an employer or an individual, you are invited to attend the second of five Women in Supply Chain events on November 22, at the Art Gallery of Calgary. Go to the Inspire! Women in Supply Chain roundtable reception to hear how three successful women with very diverse careers are making their mark in a competitive supply chain world. Be inspired by their stories and network with other women – and men – in the supply chain field. Tickets are available at
The next event in the series is Engage! Women in Supply Chain Conference, to take place on January 31 and February 1, 2013.

Other Events
CITT – Vancouver Area Council and the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport in North America, China’s Mega Ports and their Impact on World Trade, November 1, Burnaby, B.C.
CITT – Alberta South Area Council, Tour: Canadian Freightways, November 1, Calgary, Alta.
Heenan Blaikie and Forum for International Trade Training, Export compliance – Canada and the United States: One-day intensive course
November 1: Ottawa
November 6: Montreal
November 8: Toronto
Includes two webinars, virtual conference sessions:
Canadian Public Procurement Council, Forum 2012: Strategic Leadership in Challenging Fiscal Times, November 4 to 7, Vancouver, B.C.
I.E.Canada and the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants, Customs Duty and International Trade Course, November 6 to 8, Mississauga, Ont.
Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association, Air Dangerous Goods Training
Initial – November 6 to 8
Recurrent – November 7 and 8
Radioactive Materials – November 8

Initial – November 20 to 22
Recurrent – November 21 and 22
Radioactive – November 22
Initial – December 11 to 13
Recurrent – December 12 and 13
Radioactive Materials – December 13

Initial – December 11 to 13
Recurrent – December 12 and 13
Radioactive Materials – December 13

Supply Chain & Logistics Association Canada – B.C. Chapter, Supply Chain Canada West, November 7, Vancouver, B.C.
The Journal of Commerce, Canada Maritime Conference, November 7 and 8, Mississauga, Ont.

Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association, Webinars: International Trade Workshops (each workshop is delivered in two parts on consecutive days)
November 13 and 14: Incoterms 2010 (in French)
November 21 and 22: Incoterms 2010
November 28 and 29: Letters of Credit
The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation, 8th Annual Hwy H2O Conference, November 14 and 15, Toronto, Ont.
I.E.Canada, Webinar: Encryptions, November 15

Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport North America, Transportation Workshop and AGM, November 19, Ottawa, Ont.

Healthy Transport Consulting, Transport Futures Governance Summit, November 19, Toronto, Ont.

CITT – Manitoba Area Council, Breakfast Seminar: Lean Supply Chain, November 21, Winnipeg, Man.
CITT, Webinar: Capital Budgeting, November 21
Alberta Institute of the Purchasing Management Association of Canada, 23rd Annual Conference, November 26 and 27, Calgary, Alta.
Always up-to-date in our online event listing. See events outside of Canada.

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