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National Capital Region (NCR) - Archive

Table of contents

  1. December 2013 Notices
  2. November 2013 Notices
  3. Payment Period and Interest on Overdue Accounts
  4. Non-authorized practices in the context of the Language Training Standing Offers

1. December 2013 Notices

The winter group sessions will begin shortly (in January). Please consult the schedules for group training on our website so that you can send your call-ups by December 20. That will permit to take into account the civic holiday of the Holidays season and allow proper course loading time for the training sessions given in January 2014.

Remember that all Federal Institutions are responsible for consulting the training schedules on the PWGSC website in order to ensure that their call-ups are sent in time. Do not wait for a reminder from PWGSC to issue your call-ups.

List of offerors and hourly rates

Please use the list of offerors and hourly rates. Make sure you send your call-ups to the email addresses that appear below the name of each offeror. Several Federal Institutions seem to be using old email addresses still.

Requests for quotes

Several suppliers have advised us that Federal Institutions are requesting estimates or quotes in relation to their language training needs. Remember that if you are using the EN578-093429 series of standing offers, you do not need to request a quote because the rates are posted on our website.

Self-assessments and learning plans

As you know, learning plans for full-time training or self-assessments and SLE test results for part-time training must always be attached to the call-up.

The difference between work streams A, B, C and D

Several Federal Institutions are not sure what the difference is between letters A, B, C and D for work streams 3 and 9.

The difference between these letters is simply the location of the supplier's premises. Federal Institutions that have premises in area B, C or D therefore have the option of using a supplier located nearby.

Stream A: The downtown Ottawa/Gatineau area between Wellington Street, Maclaren Street, Bay Street and Elgin Street in Ottawa, Ontario, and between Laurier Street, Sacré-Cœur Boulevard and St-Rédempteur Street in Gatineau, Quebec.

Stream B:  The Outaouais area within a 10-km radius of the centre of the river behind the Library of Parliament (on Wellington Street, Ottawa, Ontario), in the Outaouais, in the province of Quebec, outside area A.

Stream C: The east Ottawa area within a 10-km radius of the centre of the river behind the Library of Parliament (on Wellington Street, Ottawa, Ontario), to the east, in the province of Ontario, outside area A.

Stream D: The west Ottawa area within a 10-km radius of the centre of the river behind the Library of Parliament (on Wellington Street, Ottawa, Ontario), to the west, in the province of Ontario, outside area A.

Individual training requested on the federal institution's premises

Even though there is no required minimum number of training hours per week in the statements of work for the individual training standing offers, we request that federal institutions not ask a supplier to send a teaching resource for only one (1) hour of training on the federal institution's premises. It is not cost-effective for a supplier to provide a teaching resource for such a short period of time, especially if the resource has to travel far. We recommend that, wherever possible, sessions for learners requiring less than three (3) hours of training be grouped together in the same day (one after the other) or at least grouped together in blocks of more than one (1) hour for the teaching resource.

Invoicing and payment

  1. Please make sure that your billing address is clearly indentified in your call-up. If it is not identified, the supplier will send your invoice to the coordinator whose name appears in the call-up.
  2. The standing offers we issued were based on the needs identified by Federal Institutions during consultations, one of which was the need to receive monthly invoices. The suppliers must therefore provide monthly invoices to all federal institutions, who must pay the invoices within 30 days of receiving and accepting the work.
  3. If you choose the direct deposit mode of payment, please make sure that you inform (by email) the supplier that a direct deposit request has been made to its financial institution. That email must clearly state the invoice number, the amount paid and the funds transfer date.
  4. Certain federal institutions are imposing Credit Card payment as the sole method of payment. Such a practice is strictly forbidden, unless the supplier has agreed to that method of payment in its offer. The List of Offerors and hourly rates document clearly lists the method(s) of payment accepted by each Offeror. Please make sure that your federal institution complies.

Call-ups

  1. Deadline for sending call-ups:

    Group Training: As you know, you must send your call-ups at least ten (10) business days before the training starts so that the supplier has enough time to conduct course loading for the groups. If a federal institution issues a call-up less than ten (10) business days before the training starts, the supplier may choose not to accept it without being subject to corrective measures. If the supplier accepts the call-up and then you cancel the training before it starts, you must comply with the applicable cancellation policy, that is, pay 100% of the training cost set out in the call-up for the current session.

    Individual Training: We ask that federal institutions send their call-ups at least five (5) business days before the training starts. This deadline will help suppliers find qualified and experienced teaching resources while complying with the security requirements. As you know, the supplier has one (1) business day following your request to indicate whether it is able to provide the requested services, and two (2) business days to confirm the training location and start date.

  2. Work stream 4 – Part-time group training on the federal institution's premises:

    Some Federal Institutions are still using the old schedule for work stream 4. However, you were sent an email in June indicating that there was no longer a schedule for this work stream. This is also clearly stated on our website. Therefore, please follow PWGSC's procedures for this work stream by sending an email to achatsformationlinguistique.languagetrainingprocurement@tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca to obtain the name of a supplier.

Reminders and advertisements sent by suppliers

We have received several complaints regarding the fact that suppliers are sending reminders or advertisements about language training to federal institutions, which creates confusion for these institutions. We will advise the suppliers that, from now on, such advertisements and reminders will no longer be accepted.

Frequently asked questions

Frequently Asked Questions will be posted in the next few days.

Statement of work requirements

Preparation time for teaching resources and self-directed learning periods:

As you know, according to clause 8.2.2 of Annex A – Statement of Work for full-time group and individual training, the teaching resource must devote one (1) hour to course preparation for every six (6) hours of teaching time, that is, one (1) hour of preparation time per 7-hour day. During that hour, the learners must perform self-directed learning activities. These self-directed learning periods are among the PFL2 and CEWP training activities.

For part-time training, no preparation time is provided for in the Statement of Work. The teaching resources must therefore manage their own time to ensure that they spend enough time preparing the courses. Federal Institutions that use blocks of time for part-time individual training in order to obtain the services of a teaching resource on their premises are strongly recommended not to exceed 30 hours of training a week for this resource so that the resource is able to spend at least one (1) hour / 6 hours of training on preparing the courses.

Consultation committee

PWGSC and the Canada School of Public Service (CSPS) are planning to set up a consultation committee so that the users of the EN578-093429 series of standing offers can meet to discuss issues encountered, possible solutions and best practices, and to share ideas on how to improve the procedures in place at PWGSC and the CSPS, as well as at their federal institutions.

These meetings could be held on a regular basis (monthly, quarterly, etc.) or on an "as needed" basis. Unfortunately, only one representative per federal institution can sit on the committee since it is difficult for us to find available rooms for a large number of people. These representatives should be very familiar with our standing offers, as well as with their own Federal Institution's official languages administrative procedures.

We will also set up a similar consultation committee for the suppliers. Eventually, you will be invited to take part in meetings for both groups (federal institutions and suppliers).

If you are interested in taking part in the committee, please sign up by sending an email with the following information to achatsformationlinguistique.languagetrainingprocurement@tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca:

  1. Your full name;
  2. Your Federal Institution; and
  3. Your email address and telephone number.

Information sessions

The last information sessions were held in September. There are no information sessions scheduled at this time. However, we will provide sessions upon request if there are at least five (5) participants per session. If you would like to attend a session, please advise us by sending an email to the address above. Note that we are exploring the possibility of developing a DVD training video or Web-based training that would be available at all times.

2. November 2013 Notices

  1. Be proactive and immediately send your call-ups for the sessions starting in November, December and January!  Please refer to the schedules for group training on our site.
  2. We remind you that learners have no authority to modify call-ups (CU) provisions, nor do they have the authority to modify the initial agreement between the supplier and the federal institution's Coordinator identified in the CU. Any envisioned change should first be approved by the Coordinator listed on the CU and/or the person who authorized and signed the CU.
  3. We also wish to remind you that it is prohibited for learners to switch groups without the approval of the Coordinator. That practice leads to serious management problems for the supplier and the federal institution, such as billing errors and disturbances in the quality assurance of the training provided to learners (non-homogeneous groups), to name a few.
  4. For group training on the federal institution or offeror's facilities, some federal institutions require in their call-ups that the supplier provide a teaching resource within one or two working days of the date of issuance of the call-up. We remind you that federal institutions must issue a call-up to the offeror selected no later than ten (10) business days before the start date of the training. An offeror may, at its discretion, decline any call-up submitted under the ten-day deadline, without being in default.
  5. For all training on the federal institution's premises, the federal institution must provide rooms and equipment suitable for the training.
  6. Learner's training schedule
    • Individual Training: It is important to clearly state on call-ups when a learner's training schedule cannot be changed.
    • Part-time Group Training on the Offeror's site: Offerors will do their best to meet the training schedule stated on a call-up. However, as call-ups come from various federal institutions and contain different schedules, it may be very difficult for an offeror to meet them. To allow a group to start with the required minimum of learners, federal institutions must accept a supplier's proposed training schedule or pay for the session.

New:

Please consult the Frequently Asked Questions page.

3. Payment Period and Interest on Overdue Accounts

It has been brought to our attention that certain federal institutions do not pay, or pay very lately, invoices submitted by Suppliers under Standing Offers (SOs) series EN578-093429. Thus, suppliers have to unduly absorb the costs of the services rendered to federal institutions, over a period extending after the thirty-day period provided for.

As a user of the Standing Offers, it is your responsibility to see that your call-ups bear the complete billing address and contact person information, in order to avoid significant delays in the processing of invoices by your federal institution (FI).

PWGSC will survey suppliers to determine which federal institutions do not comply with the payment period of general conditions 2035. Following that survey, a formal warning will be sent to all concerned federal institutions. If a warned FI does not correct the deficiencies in the timeframe given by the Standing Offer Authority, the FI may lose its privilege of using the Standing offers for a period of time determined by the Standing Offer Authority, or see its right of use completely withdrawn.

For your information, offers are subject to terms and conditions of the 2035 Clauses and Conditions Manual (SACC). The following clauses form parts of these terms and conditions:

2035 16 (2012-07-16) Payment Period

  1. Canada's standard payment period is thirty (30) days. The payment period is measured from the date an invoice in acceptable form and content is received in accordance with the Contract or the date the Work is delivered in acceptable condition as required in the Contract, whichever is later. A payment is considered overdue on the 31st day following that date and interest will be paid automatically in accordance with the section 17.
  2. If the content of the invoice and its substantiating documentation are not in accordance with the Contract or the Work is not in acceptable condition, Canada will notify the Contractor within fifteen (15) days of receipt. The 30-day payment period begins upon receipt of the revised invoice or the replacement or corrected Work. Failure by Canada to notify the Contractor within fifteen (15) days will only result in the date specified in subsection 1 to apply for the sole purpose of calculating interest on overdue accounts.

2035 17 (2008-12-12) Interest on Overdue Accounts

  1. For the purpose of this section:

    "Average Rate" means the simple arithmetic mean of the Bank Rates in effect at 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time each day during the calendar month immediately before the calendar month in which payment is made;

    "Bank Rate" means the rate of interest established from time to time by the Bank of Canada as the minimum rate at which the Bank of Canada makes short term advances to members of the Canadian Payments Association;

    "date of payment" means the date of the negotiable instrument drawn by the Receiver General for Canada to pay any amount under the Contract;

    an amount becomes "overdue" when it is unpaid on the first day following the day on which it is due and payable according to the Contract.

  2. Canada will pay to the Contractor simple interest at the Average Rate plus 3 percent per year on any amount that is overdue, from the date that amount becomes overdue until the day before the date of payment, inclusive. The Contractor is not required to provide notice to Canada for interest to be payable.
  3. Canada will pay interest in accordance with this section only if Canada is responsible for the delay in paying the Contractor. Canada will not pay interest on overdue advance payments.

Thank you to adhere to the terms and conditions of the Standing Offers and call-ups.

4. Non-authorized practices in the context of the Language Training Standing Offers

During conversations held with different Departments and Suppliers, we were made aware of the usage of non-authorized practices in the context of the Language Training Standing Offers. In order to have training start on schedule, certain Departments and Suppliers will "falsify" the number of learners, to give the impression that the minimum number of learners has been reached for a training to be given. The standing offers thus contain false information and values.

Example 1: Full-time French Group training, which requires a minimum of 4 learners, and for which there are only 3 registrations: in order to ensure the start of the training on schedule (and not only when there is a fourth registration), a Department/Supplier multiplies the hourly rate by four (in order to make believe that the minimum number of registrations has been met), and then divides the result by three (the real number of learners) to finally use this new hourly rate per learner on their call-ups. In such an example, the hourly rate per learner has been artificially increased, which is not provided for in the conditions of the pertaining standing offer.

Example 2: Full-time French Group training (with an hourly rate of $7.00 per learner), which requires a minimum of 4 learners, and for which there are only 3 registrations: in order to ensure the start of the training on schedule, a Department adds ¨ghost¨ learners to the call-up, in order to make believe that the minimum number of registered learners has been met (4), whereas only three learners will actually receive training. In such an example, the Basis of payment of the call-up meets the requirements of the standing offer, but the call-up contains false information.

Please note that such practices will not be accepted, tolerated, nor supported by Public Works and Government Services Canada. All violations to the terms and conditions of the Standing Offers will be considered and treated by PWGSC as a default by the concerned Department and/or Contractor.