OTTAWA, August 30, 2018 – What’s a “reasonable time to wait for a replacement to the Phoenix pay system to be implemented”? According to a recent Environics Research survey commissioned by the Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada (PIPSC), nearly half (46%) of Canadians say six months is a “reasonable time to wait.” That number rises dramatically to nearly 9 out of 10 Canadians (88%) when one includes those who believe two years or less is a reasonable time to wait.
It’s a response the federal government should bear in mind as it marks Labour Day, and while tens of thousands of federal employees still struggle with errors due to Phoenix that have left them paid too little, too much or, too often, not at all.
“We’ve already waited well over two years for a solution,” said PIPSC President Debi Daviau. “Now that the government has committed to finding an alternative, it needs to speed up implementation of those alternatives. Our members can’t wait another two years.”
“As an active partner in finding a new system as soon as possible, we intend to push for alternatives to be tried as quickly as possible,” added Daviau, referring to the working partnership announced in June between PIPSC and the federal government. Among those alternatives is the Corporate Administrative System (CAS), an HR-to-Pay software program used by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) that, PIPSC says, can be readily updated to a full-fledged payroll system.
“We believe the CAS system can be adapted and brought online much more quickly than the government’s current (and vague) timelines for implementing an alternative system,” said Daviau. “That would ensure at least 55,000 CRA and CBSA employees could be removed from the Phoenix pay system and paid through a new, much more reliable system sooner. The government needs to speed up implementation of viable alternatives now. Our members can’t wait.”
The public opinion survey by Environics Research was conducted by telephone among 1,000 Canadians between July 3 and 8, 2018. The results can be considered accurate + or – 3.2%, 19 times out of 20.
The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada represents approximately 55,000 public service professionals across Canada, most of them employed by the federal government.