This edition's topics – April 2018

Product updates

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Impact Canada Challenge Platform

The partners: Privy Council Office (PCO) and Infrastructure Canada
The product: A scalable, reusable platform that creates new opportunities for innovators and entrepreneurs to help solve Canada’s biggest challenges.
Current status and next steps:                               
  • Work wrapped up on the Beta version of the Challenge Platform that included a standard submission web form.
  • The platform was handed over to the Impact and Innovation Unit at PCO at the beginning of April. This included transitioning ownership of codebase, hosting environment and further product development.
  • Several other departments have shown an interest in reusing the Platform to combine multiple challenges using a single platform.

Unlocking EnerGuide Data

The partner: Natural Resources Canada (NRCan)
The product: A public-facing application programming interface (API) to open up access to EnerGuide Home Energy Ratings data in a transparent and reusable way.
Current status and next steps:
  • The development of the alpha version of the EnerGuide API is now complete, along with technical documentation.
  • The product team co-located with NRCan in late March and early April to ensure a smooth transition and provide hands-on coaching.
  • While CDS work on this product is complete, the team will continue to collaborate with NRCan this month to transfer ownership of the API.

Rescheduling a Citizenship Interview

The partner: Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
The product: A service that will let people reschedule their citizenship interviews online, moving away from paper-based processes.
Current status and next steps:
  • The product team tested the content of appointment notices with citizenship applicants to assess comprehension level, making adjustments and testing content again.
  • The flow of wireframes was tested with citizenship applicants on paper initially to validate design options before building the clickable prototype of the service to reschedule citizenship interviews online.
  • The alpha version of the online service continues to be refined through multiple rounds of usability testing and insights gained from users, including citizenship applicants and staff at the local office in Vancouver and the Montreal call centre.
  • Next, accessibility testing will help ensure the service meets user needs, best practices and requirements.

Improving Access to Benefits for Veterans

The partner: Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC)
The product:  An online tool to make it easier for Veterans to determine what benefits, programs and services they may be eligible for.
Current status and next steps:
  • The product team conducted interviews with Veterans to better understand their needs and gather firsthand accounts of their experience with government services.
  • Moving into the building phase, prototypes of the webpage are being designed based on insights from research with Veterans. In conjunction with the design of the webpage, input from more Veterans and frontline staff will take place across Canada.
  • New plain language content to fill the webpage prototype is also currently being developed. This will be tested with Veterans in order to enable simpler and quicker ways to determine which benefits are relevant to them.

Welcoming our CEO

Our new CEO, Aaron Snow, joined the team in Ottawa on April 9, 2018. Join us in wishing Aaron a warm welcome and read our reflections on the CEO recruiting process!

Web à Québec 2018

In April, Web à Québec (WAQ) took place, the largest French-speaking digital event in North America, organized by the Quebec City digital community for the digital community. Though the conference was promoted in French, the program included bilingual content, and touched on various topics: GitHub as a collaboration tool, user journey mapping, accessibility and artificial intelligence, neurosciences to help with UX research, the Web of tomorrow, and serverless functions, to name a few.
Check out presentations made by CDS’ers Mario Garneau and Annie Leblond on putting citizens at the centre of solutions (French only) and Chris Govias on transforming government with lessons from the private sector.
Ahead of the conference, we were guests on the podcast Mon Carnet with Bruno Guglielminetti and Jean-Francois Poulin. You can listen to this podcast featuring CDS starting at 44:38!

Upcoming events

  • Come discuss innovative approaches to procurement on April 27, 2018. Bring your creative ideas and help shape the ICT Procurement Playbook. Register to attend!
  • Tune in to learn about Open Source Software and Security. On May 1, 2018, at an event hosted by the Canadian School of Public Service, our Senior Information Security Advisor debunks myths and answers your questions on cybersecurity. Register for the webcast!
  • Network, share ideas and collaborate with guests from the Netherlands and the digital community at our Digital Meetup on May 3, 2018. Register to attend!
  • Come join an interactive conversation about the products we’re working on at our next Show and Tell planned for late May. Stay tuned for more information!

We’re still hiring!

Interested in working on some of Canada’s biggest service delivery opportunities? We’re hiring people at all levels of experience across a number of streams. Join the team today!

Contact Us

All feedback, comments and questions are welcome! We’re also looking to expand our reach and stay connected with the broader digital community in Canada, so we encourage you to share this newsletter!

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