Overview of Ministry Goals
The 2003/04 – 2005/06 Service Plan outlines the ministry goals and achievements covered by this Annual Service Plan Report. The ministry has six goals to reflect the six core business areas set out in the Service Plan. The performance measures focus on tracking and reporting on a core set of indicators. The indicators include client results, financial results, productivity and efficiency and organizational health.
BC Employment and Assistance Clients Achieve Independence Through Sustained Employment.
Clients find employment through work search and job placement services.
Clients acquire specific job skills through targeted training for employment.
Persons with disabilities who seek work are supported through employment programs.
- Refer clients to the Job Placement program. This program assists the most job-ready BC Employment and Assistance clients to obtain sustainable employment. Depending on client needs, service providers deliver a range of pre-placement, employment placement and post-placement services and supports. All Job Placement Program contracts are performance-based (i.e., service providers receive payments when they place clients in jobs and support them to maintain employment and remain independent of assistance).
- Refer clients to the Training for Jobs pilot program. Focuses on people who have barriers to employment, the Training for Jobs program provides specific employability and technical skills and job placement opportunities needed to gain sustainable employment. Contractors identify specific training needs, train people, and place them in jobs and provide job retention supports and services.
- Implement the second phase of the Employment Strategy for Persons with Disabilities. The Employment Program for Persons with Disabilities (EPPD) supports the efforts of persons with disabilities to increase their employability and independence to the greatest degree possible. Disability supports for employment are a key component of the program. The ministry has created a range of specialized supports such as technical equipment, physical accommodation and follow-up workplace support that allows persons with disabilities to participate in employment.
BC Employment and Assistance Services Support
Enquirers actively seek work.
Applicants and clients enter into employment plans as a condition of eligibility.
- Require enquirers to undertake a three-week self-directed work search. Conducting a work search is a requirement of all individuals who contact the ministry to request income assistance and must be completed prior to an application for assistance. The immediate focus by the enquirer on job search reduces the average time spent on assistance. Enquirers are provided with a work search package that provides tools and information on effective job seeking and how to keep clear records demonstrating their job search efforts.
- Establish mandatory obligations to meet employment plan goals for all clients. Employment plans are a condition of eligibility for all clients with employment obligations. These plans outline employment objectives for clients and identify strategies or programs to assist clients to move towards employment.
- Require all existing clients to complete employment plans and review their eligibility. This strategy is consistent with the ministry's value of being accountable for results.
BC Employment and Assistance Services Provide Continuous Assistance to Those Clients Most in Need.
Persons with multiple barriers participate in their communities.
Persons with disabilities work or volunteer, as they are able.
Assistance is provided to individuals who are not able to achieve independence through employment.
- Refer multiple barriered clients to the Community Assistance Program (CAP) for services that assist them to participate in their communities. CAP was originally designed specifically for clients who were not yet job-ready to assist them in reducing barriers to employment. In 2003/04 the program was facilitated through partnerships between the ministry and local communities, the program provides pre-employment services at the community level that support self-reliance and assist clients who have multiple barriers to employment. Refinements to programs available to Persons with Persistent Multiple Barriers (PPMB) in 2004/05 will help this group move towards achieving greater self-reliance.
- Implement programs for persons with disabilities that assist clients to find employment or to participate in the community, as they are able. The Employment Program for Persons with Disabilities provides a range of specialized services that allows persons with disabilities with different needs to take advantage of employment and employment-related opportunities.
- Provide continuous assistance and support services to those clients most in need. Continuous assistance is provided to individuals who are less likely to become independent of assistance. The ministry recognizes these clients may move toward being more self-reliant and the ministry will continue to provide supports at a level appropriate to the individual's need.
BC Employment and Assistance Services Provide Supplementary Assistance to Eligible Clients.
Homeless individuals have access to safe emergency accommodation.
Individuals and families have access to short-term disaster assistance through the Emergency Social Services (ESS) program.
Eligible clients have access to supplementary health services.
Eligible seniors and Persons with Disabilities have access to public transit.
- Provide emergency accommodation to the homeless who have no other resources. The ministry is committed to providing assistance to those who are most in need. The ministry provides funding for emergency shelters. Funds provided support year round emergency accommodation, as well as additional accommodation during winter months, if needed. This is consistent with the ministry role of providing services to individuals in need and moving individuals toward self-reliance.
- Provide short-term assistance through the ESS Program to those forced from their homes by disasters. This includes providing assistance to British Columbians who are forced to leave their homes because of fire, floods, earthquakes or other emergencies. This assistance includes lodging, food, clothing, emotional support and reuniting families.
- Provide designated health services to those who are eligible. The ministry recognizes that some clients have special health needs, which is why supplementary health assistance is provided to those who are eligible. This assistance ranges from essential medical transportation to medical equipment and supplies. Supplementary health assistance also includes dental and optical coverage, and orthotics and bracing as well as other therapeutic services.
- Provide low cost public transit passes to eligible seniors and Persons with Disabilities. The ministry supports low-income seniors and persons with disabilities by providing subsidized bus passes. Bus passes are issued on a calendar year basis and can be purchased at any time of the year. Replacement passes are also provided at a minimal cost. This replacement fee escalates with the number of passes replaced.
The Ministry is a Responsive and Motivating Employer.
Employees have the tools to adapt to and benefit from change.
The ministry recruits and retains a workforce that is competent, capable and flexible.
Staff actions align with ministry goals and objectives.
The ministry's working environment encourages productivity and innovation.
- Consistently address change management issues in all ministry project plans. The ministry has undergone a number of changes over the last two years. These changes range from temporary and continuous assistance policy changes to changes in staffing, service delivery, and regional boundaries, and workforce adjustment. In recognition of these substantial changes the ministry ensures that change management strategies are employed for all ministry changes.
- Define core competencies and selection standards for key positions. The recruitment and retention of qualified staff to administer ministry programs is essential to ensure clients are supported and the ministry meets its goals and measures. Identifying the core competencies and standardizing hiring processes ensures ministry staff are qualified to meet ministry needs.
- Implement employee performance, planning, development and review processes and tools. As part of a cross-government initiative, the ministry is implementing the Employee Performance and Development Plan (EPDP). This process supports employees in achieving their performance and development goals, which are aligned with ministry goals. To assist employees with preparing their EPDP, employees are provided with resources, tools and training.
- Continue to implement effective health and safety programs and practices. This strategy continues the ministry's history of providing health and wellness support to staff. The ministry provides supports to staff that are over and above Occupational Health and Safety requirements by promoting healthy lifestyles and providing tools to reduce stress, as well as emotional support for staff and families through the Employee and Family Assistance Program.
The Ministry Operates Effectively, Openly and Accountably.
Ministry processes and systems support accountability for results.
Service delivery is streamlined and effective.
Individuals have access to an impartial and responsive appeal system.
- Continue to streamline client access through Electronic Services. This ministry continues to deliver essential programs and services to our clients through the use of new technology and more efficient practices. The majority of services can be provided over the phone or online. Clients who live in remote areas of the province or in places where offices have been amalgamated continue to be served effectively.
- Measure ministry performance by undertaking client interviews, research, data tracking and reporting. This strategy includes the development and publication of the Service Plan and the Annual Service Plan Report.
- Develop shared platforms and systems to improve the capacity for integrated and coordinated monitoring and reporting across the ministry. A joint initiative between Planning, Performance and Data Services Branch and the Information Management Branch is underway to develop and implement a framework to address the current and future analysis and reporting needs of the ministry, and enhance the integrity and security of integrated corporate information. MARS, the ministry data warehouse provides an avenue for reporting performance measurement, performance forecasting and program planning information to executive and staff throughout the ministry. As the teams work together to define and implement the framework, they will leverage the investment in MARS, and in parallel, will examine current industry and government best practices in an effort to continually improve the access to and reliability of the ministry's information asset. These initiatives will enable the ministry to better forecast and plan for future challenges.
- Procure key services through an open, fair and transparent process and implement performance-based contracts. The ministry is committed to operating programs that are results-based with clear outcomes and full accountability to the taxpayer. A top priority of this government is to ensure responsible, accountable management of public resources and tax dollars.