Update and Extension to Strategic Plan 2019-2022 – Plan Extension to 2024

Message from the Chair and the Commissioner

It is our honour to present this update to the Commission for Complaints for Telecom-television Services’ (CCTS) Strategic Plan, as we extend the Strategic Plan to 2024.

In 2019, we developed our Strategic Plan for 2019 to 2022 with the goals of providing better quality service to our stakeholders while creating a more effective, efficient, transparent and accessible organization. Our Strategic Plan identified the following three strategic priority areas:

  1. Deliver efficient, effective and transparent service to customers and service providers;
  2. Strengthen our organizational capacity, structure and resilience; and,
  3. Build a deeper value-added relationship with our stakeholders.

But like many organizations, the pace of our work on these objectives has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, which required us to pivot to an entirely remote workforce and navigate the new challenges that such major changes entail.

As we enter 2022 and look ahead, our current strategic priorities continue to be the right priorities for the CCTS. There is also much more work ahead of us to continue implementing plans and measuring our performance in each of these strategic priority areas. We remain committed to these three strategic priorities. We are therefore extending our Strategic Plan to the end of our 2024 fiscal year.

A strategic plan helps provide guidance into the future, but it takes a team to implement it. We thank our experienced and knowledgeable Board and our dedicated staff who truly are our biggest asset for all their efforts to continue to make CCTS a valued partner in Canada’s television and telecommunication industry.

Catherine Boivie, Chair / Howard Maker, Commissioner & CEO


CCTS Core Value Proposition

At the heart of our mandate are the stakeholders we serve. We strive to deliver an outstanding dispute resolution service: efficient, effective, and transparent. As an organization, we always think about the value we bring to our stakeholders. We work to ensure that we always deliver on this value. The value we provide to our key stakeholders is articulated in the figure below.

The CCTS provides outstanding dispute resolution service to Canadian consumers, telecom and television service providers. The CCTS provides a neutral dispute resolution that helps level the playing field and provides binding decisions to Consumers and Consumer Groups. The CCTS provides information, data and insights to allow Participating Service Providers to repair relationships and improve their customer relations. The CCTS helps fulfill the government and regulators' objective of providing consumer protection and help create confidence in the system. The CCTS trains its employees to help build their career at the CCTS and enable them to effectively do their jobs on behalf of Canadian Consumers.

The strategic priorities are designed to ensure a culture of continuous improvement and effectiveness in delivering on our value proposition to our stakeholders. As we continue to implement and measure our progress on each of the three strategic areas, we will focus on underlining and enhancing the value we provide to each of our stakeholders.


CCTS Strategic Priorities

With our mandate, vision, mission, values, and value proposition to stakeholders in mind, our goal was to create a strategic plan propelling the CCTS to the next level of organizational maturity over the next several years. We reviewed dozens of ideas and made tough decisions to focus our organization on three key strategic priorities. We set these priorities to build on our current strengths and help us address areas where continuous improvement can be made, enabling us to evolve as Canada’s ombudsman for the telecommunications-television marketplace.

As we enter 2022-23 and look ahead, our current strategic priorities continue to be the right priorities for the CCTS. Below, we describe the significant progress that has been made on our three strategic priorities since 2019. We also set out our next steps to continue implementing plans and measuring our performance in each strategic priority area until the end of our 2024 fiscal year.

Strategic Priority: Deliver an efficient, effective and transparent service delivery to customers and service providers

Service delivery is at our organization’s core. A responsive dispute-resolution process that offers fair, independent and timely outcomes helps both consumers and service providers and builds overall confidence in the telecommunications and television sector.

Our objective over the next phase in the execution of our strategic plan is to further enhance CCTS’ service delivery model and workflow. We want to continuously improve our efficiency, effectiveness and transparency to customers and service providers. We will review our key operational and service delivery processes and benchmark them to leading practices of similar organizations to identify new opportunities to further strengthen the efficiency and effectiveness of our service delivery capabilities. With the review’s results in hand, we will create and execute against a roadmap to build on our successes and continuously improve the service we deliver. With an initial focus on early opportunities for success, we will plan and resource any required transformative changes and we will monitor, evaluate, and report on our progress to our Board and stakeholders. This will strengthen our culture of continuous improvement to deliver on our mandate.

2022 Update and What’s Ahead

  • Following a search in 2019, we engaged consulting firm cameron.ralph.koury (CRK) to conduct an independent review of CCTS’ operations in January 2020. The review was a first look into CCTS’ operations based on consultations with several stakeholders, and we received its report and recommendations in fall 2020.
  • We established a service delivery review governance structure, with streams to oversee the review of CCTS’ business processes and to modernize the technologies used to support them, including our complaint management system.
  • As of the end of 2021, we have reviewed much of CCTS’ business processes, including our complaint handling processes, stakeholder engagement strategies, and complaint fee model. We have done this in consultation with a range of stakeholders including consumer advocacy groups, service providers, CRTC staff, and our employees.  We have also consulted with other organizations similar to ours that have undergone recent business transformations in the past to see what we could learn from their experience. We have taken steps to start updating our technologies, including issuing a Request for Proposal for a new case management system.
  • In early 2022, our Board of Directors approved amendments to our complaint handling processes and other business process changes geared toward making CCTS more effective and transparent in the execution of its mandate. We also intend to select a new case management system and begin working on prototyping and testing of this system in the fall of 2022 and early 2023. We are optimistic that we will be able to implement approved changes to our complaints process as well as the initial release of a new case management system in mid-2023. [JL1]
  • We will also plan for subsequent phases of our technological transformation. These phases are expected to introduce more value-added features for stakeholders and help CCTS improve our efficiency and transparency.
  • In 2023 and 2024, following the implementation of these significant business process and technology changes, we will focus on measuring these improvements in our processes and technologies. This will involve ongoing consultations with stakeholders to monitor their experiences with these changes, and measurements to determine how these changes have improved our service delivery.

Strategic Priority: Strengthen organizational capacity, structure and resilience

Our staff are our organization’s greatest asset and strength. Without them, we cannot deliver on our value proposition to our stakeholders. Given the degree and pace of change in Canada’s telecommunications and television industries, we must ensure that we have a resilient and scalable organizational structure to respond to consumer issues that arise.

Our objective is to strengthen CCTS’ organizational structure and resilience to support our employees, enhance accountability and drive our ability to scale. CCTS will develop a concrete strategy to close gaps in our talent, human resources, infrastructure and performance targeting.

We believe in our employees and their ability to grow at the CCTS. It is critical for our organization to build employee talent, so we can better serve our stakeholders and resolve disputes fairly. Employee resilience will serve the CCTS beyond the strategic plan into the future. Thus, a key focus area will be to build employee skillsets and talents going forward.

2022 Update and What’s Ahead

  • In 2019, we completed organizational structure and resilience reviews with an independent third party. This review identified new roles to support CCTS’ growth, and we completed filling these roles.
  • In 2020, we also completed succession planning for key roles in the organization, identifying potential internal successors and assessing their readiness and opportunities for development.
  • In 2021, we reviewed and began revising our business continuity plan to ensure CCTS can continue to operate in the event of disruption.
  • We also identified and resourced mentorship, exposure, and training opportunities for all staff. This includes skilling many of our employees in other roles (cross-training) to give us the flexibility to reallocate our human resources as needs evolve or as complaint volumes fluctuate.
  • CCTS’ employee engagement surveys continue to show exceptional results, and future employee surveys are planned to measure whether employee satisfaction and engagement continue to increase.
  • Like many workplaces, the COVID-19 pandemic brought about significant change for CCTS’ employees. We demonstrated impressive organizational resilience as our workforce pivoted to a work-from-home model without the need to cease operations and without impacting CCTS performance metrics. We remain committed to this strategic priority as we navigate the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on the way we work.
  • This particular strategic priority will be an ongoing focus for CCTS. Our employees are vital to our success and we believe that supporting them through human-centred workplace programs and continued development opportunities are key to both CCTS’ success and employee engagement. We will continue to commit resources over the next several years to support this strategic priority. This includes continued focus on training and development opportunities, mentorship and cross-training opportunities, and succession planning.

Strategic Priority: Build a deeper value-added relationship with stakeholders

In order to deliver on our mandate and our value proposition to our stakeholders, we must have relationships with telecommunications and television consumers and stakeholders built on trust and mutual understanding. CCTS will build on its efforts to be an organization that adds value, actively engages stakeholders and is seen as an expert voice within the sector.

We will grow the CCTS brand through improved communications and stakeholder engagement strategies. We are in the process of creating a formalized strategy that will focus on building value and positioning us as a trusted dispute resolution services provider and a voice for insights into the industry’s evolving dynamics. We will responsibly plan for, and invest in, the resources required to improve this function.

We will remain committed to ensuring that the CCTS and its Participating Service Providers continue efforts to raise public awareness of a customer’s right of recourse to the CCTS in the event of an unresolved dispute with a service provider. Through the measures in our public awareness plan (the details of which are also currently under review), supported by our compliance program, and in all our public-facing activity, the CCTS will continue its efforts to ensure that customers with complaints are made aware of the recourse we offer.

2022 Update and What’s Ahead

  • We strengthened our organizational capacity to support this strategic priority by hiring a Director, Stakeholder Affairs and Communications in fall 2020 and a new Assistant Commissioner, Legal, Regulatory & Stakeholder Affairs in spring 2021.
  • In 2021, we began forming our stakeholder engagement strategy and identified activities and events to continue to build value-added relationships with various stakeholders.
  • In 2022, we will begin implementing various engagement activities envisioned in our stakeholder engagement strategy, such as more formalized and proactive consultations with a range of stakeholders. Since 2017, our annual consultations with accessibility groups have helped us better understand challenges of the accessibility community, so that we could identify and implement ways to better serve Canadians. In early 2022, we kicked off a bi-annual Consumer Advisory Panel, which invited consumer advocacy groups from across the country to meet with us so that the CCTS can learn from these groups’ perspectives and insights into the consumer experience, in particular that of vulnerable consumers. We will also build on consultations with service providers to continue demonstrating our value and to hear their views and receive their input.
  • We continue to publish regular communications, such as our Annual and Mid-Year Reports, and have published more regular reports and communications such as our annual Compliance Monitoring Report and newsletters. We will seek new opportunities to share the trends that we see with the industry and consumers.
  • We undertook our second formal public awareness survey in 2021. The survey results were similar to those of our 2016 survey: perceptions about the CCTS are generally positive and overall awareness of the CCTS remained stable, although lower than we would like it to be.
  • The public awareness survey results underline the importance of CCTS continuing to build public awareness about our mandate and activities. We continue to review the CCTS public awareness plan, “Developing Public Awareness of the CCTS”. This plan sets out Participating Service Providers’ requirements to raise public awareness of a customer’s right of recourse to CCTS in the event of an unresolved dispute with a service provider. At the same time, we will continue to build public awareness through additional public-facing materials, such as more case studies, a regular public newsletter, enhanced social media presence, videos explaining our processes, collaborations with government agencies, and outreach to more groups that interface with the public. We remain committed to plan for additional public awareness activities in the future and measure public awareness about the CCTS.
  • We anticipate that the CRTC will review the CCTS’ mandate in the near future. The CCTS will prepare and participate in this review accordingly.


Planning and Implementing Each Strategic Priority

From 2019 to 2022, the CCTS took a deeper dive into each strategic priority, building operational and budgeting plans to enable us to deliver on each strategic priority.

As we continue our work in each strategic priority area and continue implementing next steps, we will develop focused performance measures for each priority. This will ensure we have the information necessary to track performance and adapt our implementation efforts to successfully deliver on our strategy.


Moving Forward

CCTS is a valuable Canadian institution. The successful implementation of this strategic plan will strengthen CCTS as an outstanding dispute resolution service to Canadian consumers, telecommunications and television service providers. CCTS will continue pursuing a vision, mission and mandate to, ultimately, benefit Canada’s telecommunications and television customers and service providers.