CERIC has published a new edition of its popular Retain and Gain Playbook to support public sector employers in developing an inclusive, agile and equipped workforce. The bilingual publication comes at a time when all levels of the public sector are focused on career development as a means of putting the full capacity of their talent pools at the service of Canadians, exemplified by the federal government’s recent Call to Action on Anti-Racism, Equity and Inclusion.

Written in an innovative “travel guide” format, the Playbook is a concise, action-oriented career management resource that public sector leaders and managers can use to attract, engage and retain staff. It applies to all levels of government: municipal, provincial, federal and First Nations. The Playbook is authored by workforce expert Lisa Taylor, who integrates diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) throughout and recognizes the unique context of public sector workplaces. The Playbook is situated in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on public sector careers, including workforce mental health and remote work arrangements.

The publication includes:

  • 40+ practical, low-cost tips, activities and actions that can be implemented in as little as 10 minutes a day (worksheets and additional references included)
  • An exploration of career issues of specific interest to the public sector such as when there are few opportunities for knowledge specialist advancement
  • A special section on “Careers and Canadians” outlining how career management can be a powerful lens for the development of public policy and delivery of public services

Activities in this Playbook will help facilitate dedicated career conversations, individual and organizational career planning strategies and greater awareness of the career-related resources available in the public sector – and how to find them. They will also help foster resilience and responsiveness to changing conditions. The Playbook makes the case that career management offers a strategic lever for stronger organizational performance beyond employee satisfaction and loyalty. It drives better public service and increased opportunity for innovation.

Development of the Playbook was guided by an Advisory Committee that included representation from the Government of Canada’s Interdepartmental Career Community of Practice, National Managers’ Community and Privy Council Office (Public Service Renewal Secretariat) as well as from the Governments of Saskatchewan and New Brunswick. The book is being championed across the public sector as a foundational tool for managers that also responds to the need to support the career advancement of equity-seeking groups:

“Finally! A comprehensive resource that is practical and speaks to the benefits of career planning while providing free tools and pathways that recognize our busy work lives. This should be saved on the desktops of all public service people-management leaders. As the public service readies itself for the culture shift for the future of work, and responds to the calls to action on addressing systemic racism, diversity and inclusion, this Playbook comes at a critical time to help understand how career conversations are essential to align talent with the organizational needs of today and tomorrow…now.”
– Tracey Sametz, Director General, Human Resources, Transport Canada

Retain and Gain: Career Management in the Public Sector is the third book in CERIC’s Retain and Gain series. It builds on the success of two earlier resources also authored by Lisa Taylor: Retain and Gain: Career Management for Small Business Playbook (2017) and Retain and Gain: Career Management for Non-Profits and Charities Playbook (2018).

The Public Sector Playbook is available in both English and French and can be downloaded for free at ceric.ca/publicsector. It is also for sale via Amazon.ca in print or ebook formats. Bulk orders of 10 or more copies can be purchased at a 30% discount and placed through CERIC by contacting sales@ceric.ca.