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6 Jan 2017

Clerical / Administrative Senior Government Relations Officer

Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan)Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

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Job Description

Job Summary:

Reporting to the Director, Government Relations and Policy Research, the Senior Government Relations Advisor is primarily responsible for government relations to advance CICan advocacy goals.

The Senior Government Relations Advisor will advance CICan’s advocacy agenda to achieve specific tangible benefits to members in alignment with CICan’s strategic plan. The Advisor will contribute to the development and support the implementation of the CICan government relations strategy and work plan. This will include developing and implementing systems to monitor and share information about initiatives in government and in parliament related to CICan’s key advocacy files and fostering and maintaining working relationships with parliamentarians, their staff, and civil servants that result in the creation of strategic engagement opportunities for CICan’s members and its senior leadership team. The Advisor will also contribute to the development of material to support the successful positioning of the organization with the federal government and national stakeholders including presentations, briefing notes and proposals. Finally, the Advisor will plan and develop content for and organize advocacy and government relations events that facilitate engagement of member colleges and institutes with federal government partners.

The nature of the work will require close liaison and collaboration with the Senior Policy Advisors in the Government Relations and Policy Research Team, the President’s Office, including the Communications and Stakeholder Engagement and Member Relations teams, and the International Partnerships Division.

The work of the Senior Government Relations Advisor is reviewed by the Director, Government Relations and Policy Research based on objectives set annually. Input will also be provided by the Vice-President, Government Relations and Canadian Partnerships.

General Expectations:

  • play a leadership, consulting and problem-solving role with members, partners, stakeholders and Colleges and Institutes Canada staff;
  • interact regularly with senior officials and be cognizant of the outcomes of any actions;
  • function with a significant level of flexibility and autonomy, performing various and complex tasks of a responsible and professional nature;
  • take initiative, be creative and innovate;
  • handle a number of important dossiers at a time;
  • have a thorough understanding of Colleges and Institutes Canada’s goals and objectives, as well as of all programs and services;
  • have an extensive understanding of member colleges and institutes as well as knowledge of the Canadian education milieu and awareness of the socio-economic, political and cultural issues that affect the member institutions;
  • have a solid understanding of federal government departments and structures, as well as parliamentary processes and committees;
  • understand the issues that are important for colleges and institutes including post-secondary education access, innovation and applied research, Indigenous education, immigrant integration and international development;
  • ability to present policy information and qualitative and quantitative data to support messages on advocacy priorities;
  • work effectively within a team environment;
  • sound judgment and tact;
  • prioritize and organize work effectively and efficiently, under exacting deadlines;
  • represent the CICan at meetings and conferences;
  • treat everyone fairly and equitably and maintain high ethical standards;
  • perform duties in accordance with Colleges and Institutes Canada’s competencies, values and code of ethics;
  • be able to travel domestically.


Specific Expectations:

As determined by the Director and Vice-President, the Senior Government Relations Advisor will be responsible for advancing CICan’s advocacy objectives through pro-active government relations, and contribute to responsive policy engagement with CICan members and external partners and will provide support to the Vice-President and President as described below.

The Senior Government Relations Advisor, will:


  • maintain a strong understanding of current political trends and policy developments related to CICan’s priority advocacy areas and the broader political context;
  • play a lead role in the development and implementation of the CICan government relations strategy and work plan;
  • establish and maintain rapport with Parliamentary and Senate Committee Clerks, policy advisors and program managers in government and staff attached to the offices of Members of Parliament to support pro-active government relations and advocacy initiatives, determine future business and ensure presentations by CICan where appropriate;
  • contribute to the preparation of tailored, high quality advocacy products including briefing notes, submissions, briefs, position papers and presentations as they relate to CICan’s advocacy priorities and issues of importance for colleges and institutes;
  • develop and implement CICan’s monitoring and tracking system(s) for federal legislation, studies and consultations by House of Commons and Senate standing committees, as well as federal regulations, issues, and new programs which affect colleges and institutes;
  • provide senior management with summaries and analyses of government and Parliamentary initiatives on issues important to CICan members.


  • provide support to the CICan Government Relations Network, as well as other member networks, committees and reference groups in collaboration with the Senior Policy Advisors, to ensure members have input into and participate in the execution of CICan’s advocacy and policy agenda and to garner knowledge on regional and national trends and issues;
  • maintain strong working relationships with government relations advisors of member colleges and institutes, regional college associations, post-secondary education partners and national employer-based organizations to share information and identify where common action may be beneficial;
  • prepare briefing materials and summaries of advocacy activities and positions for member institutions;
  • monitor initiatives and reports of inter-governmental bodies (e.g. Premiers meetings, Ministerial Organizations), international organizations and provincial/territorial governments and recommend potential action to senior management;
  • work collaboratively with the Senior Policy Advisors to proactively identify opportunities for policy influence related to CICan advocacy priorities.


  • play a lead role in the planning, program development, promotion and delivery of CICan advocacy events and meetings including Government Relations Network meetings, roundtable meetings for college and institute senior leaders, and advocacy engagement events to raise federal government awareness about the contributions and impact of colleges and institutes;
  • contribute to the organization of CICan events, including symposia and sessions at the annual conference, by advising on program content, identification of presenters from colleges and institutes, key partners and federal government representatives.


  • ensure adherence to CICan policies and procedures in the achievement of the responsibilities of the position;
  • undertake research; prepare internal reports, draft documents and correspondence relative to the government relations function;
  • prepare annual objectives and work plans for his/her area of responsibility;
  • assist in the development, review and implementation of policies and procedures supportive of the CICan’s goals and objectives;
  • collaborate with the Communications and Stakeholder Engagement Team for the preparation of briefs, position papers and publications, and with the Member Relations Team for the organization of meetings, conference sessions and symposia;
  • communicate and work effectively and co-operatively with other staff, college/institute personnel, representatives of government agencies and other organizations;
  • perform other related duties as may be assigned from time to time.

Minimum Requirements:

  • graduate from a post-secondary institution or an equivalent combination of education and experience;
  • five (5) years of progressive experience in government relations and the development of policy material either for engagement with Government or within Government. Experience with multiple levels of government would be considered an asset;
  • demonstrated understanding of the college system in Canada, coupled with knowledge of the broader Canadian educational milieu;
  • strong knowledge of how the federal government functions at both political and bureaucratic levels and demonstrated success in influencing government policies and positions;
  • demonstrated ability to work with and liaise with diverse groups of stakeholders;
  • high degree of organizational, interpersonal and communication skills;
  • ability to work effectively and co-operatively with other staff including experience briefing senior level staff;
  • excellent research and analytical skills, and strong ability to write at a professional level;
  • ability to interact with senior administrative staff at member institutions, government and other organizations;
  • fluency in both written and verbal English and French;
  • demonstrated ability using Microsoft Office Suite (strong level of proficiency).

Salary: $69,677 – $85,284

To apply, please submit a cover letter and resume by January 19, 2017 via email to

CICan is an equal opportunity employer and values diversity in its workforce. Do not hesitate to contact me if you require alternative arrangements to submit your application.

We thank all applicants in advance however only those selected for an interview will be acknowledged.

Job Categories: Full-time. Job Types: Clerical / Administrative.

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