Integrated Business and Human Resource Plan 2016-2019 - Executive Summary

The Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) is responsible for keeping people, ships, and the environment safe within Canada’s vast maritime domain while supporting economic growth.

CCG operates a civilian fleet of 116 vessels and 22 helicopters around the clock in some of the world’s harshest and remote environments. The Agency’s 4,500 employees, split roughly in half between seagoing (2,400) and support roles (2,100), are deeply committed to upholding the important and demanding responsibilities included in its federal mandate.

CCG’s Integrated Business Management Services team worked closely with Management Board members and other employees from the Agency’s directorates to produce CCG’s Integrated Business and Human Resource Plan 2016-19. The result is an extensive compilation of program information and human resources demographic data.

The Integrated Business and Human Resource Plan 2016-19 follows CCG’s five main priorities: Mission, Mandate, Marketing, Members, and Money. The document is then further organized within four themes: preserving and acquiring modern assets, modernizing marine navigation services and infrastructure, enhancing our ability to respond to all-hazard marine incidents, and developing a long-term sustainability strategy. Together, these form a comprehensive picture of CCG’s challenges for 2016 to 2019, and beyond.

Mission: CCG is the only national civilian fleet, providing its own programs, supporting the programs of Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), and also supporting other government departments and government priorities and decisions.

Mandate: CCG protects mariners navigating on Canadian waters; it protects the environment before, during and after marine incidents, and it supports economic growth and ensures the security of Canadians.

CCG has six core services:

  • Search and Rescue
  • Marine Communications and Traffic Services
  • Marine Navigation
  • Icebreaking
  • Maritime Security
  • Environmental Response

Expectations for CCG programs and services are growing, especially in matters related to Arctic waters and vessels of concern. CCG has a strong presence in the north, providing marine services and support to northern communities, responding to mariners in distress, and protecting the ecosystem from marine spills. Augmented traffic increases the need for complex, expensive search and rescue missions, environmental response, aids to navigation, and maritime communications and traffic services.

To meet these demands, CCG is working toward increasing the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary (CCGA) presence in the north and is actively developing options for cost recovery mechanisms that would ensure vessels financially contribute to maintaining the capacity of the CCG, the Canadian Hydrographic Service, and to establish shipping routes within the Northern Marine Transportation Initiative.


Many of CCG’s operations take place in the maritime domain, away from public view. Unfortunately, this means that many Canadians are unaware of the vital programs and services CCG offers across the country, such as search and rescue and icebreaking.

To raise public awareness of CCG’s important role in Canada, the Agency is actively working on a strategy that promotes its daily operations at sea through the use of social media, education, and partnerships.

While the strategy is not complete, CCG’s increased emphasis on marketing has already resulted in an active Twitter presence, an appearance on The Amazing Race Canada, and a handful of articles in national publications. The Agency will also plan to be visibly (and nationally) present during Canada’s 150th anniversary celebrations in 2017.



Retirements, particularly from seagoing positions, continue to affect CCG’s ability to provide the level of capability required by the Agency’s federal mandate. Across Canada, the average age of CCG employees exceeds 45 years (Atlantic, 47.4 years; Central and Arctic, 47.4 years) with the executive group topping the list at 49.4 years.

CCG has a large proportion of employees who have very specialized skills, making recruitment and retention of candidates integral to our continued success. Recruitment efforts will target people with degrees and diplomas from universities and colleges, bilingual candidates, Canada’s Indigenous population, and high school students.

Mental and Physical Well-Being

The Agency will continue to support the physical and psychological health of its employees through mental health initiatives like the Joint Learning Program. CCG has put in place a forum for Persons with Disabilities with the goal of developing an association of engaged employees to address related issues and consult management and employees on matters that impact Department of Fisheries and Oceans employees.

Training and Development

The Agency spends approximately $4.2 million on training and development annually, and an additional $13.3 million on specific operational training at Canadian Coast Guard College. The College will seek to maximize the use of its resources by exploring the opportunity to provide training to other federal departments and international governments.

Incident Command System

Canadians expect CCG to provide an efficient, coordinated response to incidents that happen within our maritime domain. The Agency has improved its incident notification systems and continued to clarifying roles and responsibilities between CCG employees and other government departments. In addition to those efforts, CCG has created a standardized on-site management system that facilitates an improved response to incidents by integrating a combination of facilities, equipment, personnel, procedures, and communications which operate within a common organizational structure. More than 2,000 employees have now received Incident Command System (ICS) training with another 800 expected by 2018.


The renewal of CCG’s fleet will greatly enhance its operational capabilities in the coming years. Unlike the Agency’s current predominantly single purpose vessels, CCG’s new builds will be capable of performing multiple roles within Canada’s maritime domain.

As announced in Budget 2016, the Government of Canada committed over $800 million to help ensure that our systems and assets can meet the service demands placed upon the Agency. This infusion of new funds is a key step toward building long-term sustainability. This plan outlines the work we will undertake to ensure that we maintain the quality of service Canadians have come to expect.

Aids to Navigation

CCG has identified $45.9 million to improve the efficiency of our aids to navigation and our communication towers. Replacing older diesel generators and utilizing solar and wind energy where possible will improve efficiency and help CCG to green our operations.

Derelict and Abandoned Vessels

Derelict and abandoned vessels pose environmental risks, threaten navigation, and negatively affect the aesthetics of shorelines and harbors. CCG consistently works to clean up threats to our waters and assess wrecks to define the potential damage and estimated costs to complete a clean-up. Almost $20 million of our budget has been committed toward these efforts.

New Assets

The first delivery of new search and rescue lifeboats is expected in 2017-18. These lifeboats will have a range of about 100 nautical miles and are constructed to withstand Canada’s rugged and challenging coastline.

Seven medium-lift helicopters have been ordered, with the first delivery expected in the winter of 2017.

Programs, Infrastructure, and Response

An estimated $106.5 million dollars will be directed into program integrity, marine navigation and infrastructure, and all-hazard response to manage our risks, improve efficiency, and increase ability to respond.

Budget Shortfall

Even with these investments, CCG still faces a $33 million budget shortfall related to shore and ship operations. This shortfall is attributable to inflation, increased fuel prices, and longer shipping seasons in the Arctic.

In order to respond to these financial challenges, CCG will participate in a Treasury Board Program Integrity Process, which will provide additional funding to deliver mission-critical services. The Agency will re-examine its marine services fees to put itself in line with the maritime industry.

International Involvement

CCG will continue to reach out to a wide variety of organizations and international governments to ensure the safety and security of the world’s oceans for everyone.


The complete version of the Canadian Coast Guard’s Integrated Business and Human Resources’ Plan 2016-2019 is available, if you would like to obtain a copy please send your request to You will receive a response within a few business days.