Position profile: Issues Coordinator

Learn more about the position in the job posting.

  • Job Title: Issues Coordinator
  • Work Unit: Workforce Planning & Analytics
  • Ministry: Alberta Public Service Commission
  • Competition Number: 1054394
  • Closing Date: April 15, 2019


The Issues Coordinator reports directly to the Executive Director (ED) of Workforce Planning and Analytics and works closely with senior division and ministry representatives to accomplish core division and ministry goals. As a member of the senior management team, this position anticipates and identifies strategically relevant issues and ensures the branch is positioned to manage and respond appropriately to them.

This position provides professional advice, assistance and support to the ED in relation to ongoing operational management of the branch including the development, enhancement and integration of division programs. The Issues Coordinator is the primary connection with ministry business areas including Communications, Human Resources, other areas of the HR system. Responsible and accountable to ensure that the ED and Branch Leadership Team members are apprised of issues, options and impacts to prepare and/or coordinate the preparation of briefing materials and supporting materials to ensure effective governance and leadership. This position oversees and facilitates the smooth running of a comprehensive system of responses to urgent requests, projects and briefings for the branch as well as leading and supporting branch activities, and facilitating the smooth running of the day-to-day operations of the branch. This position may informally lead and supervise professional and administrative staff members within the ED's office, ensuring issues management, financial and operational services are provided for the division in a fully integrated and coordinated manner. In addition to working with the senior leadership team, works with the offices of the Deputy Minister, Assistant Deputy Minister and other senior government representatives on sensitive and emerging issues relating to complex and inter-related issues. Assesses issues, determines their nature and priority, researches and coordinates supporting information and takes appropriate action.

The position's primary focus is to support the ED in such a way that the ED can focus the majority of time on strategic matters that require ED level attention. On a daily basis this involves identifying and resolving issues on behalf of the ED. The Manager is sometimes required to attend events or meetings on behalf of the ED, as necessary.

Responsibilities and Activities

Strategic Issues Coordination
Manages and oversees a comprehensive system of responses to urgent and emergent issues for the WPA branch to facilitate the smooth operation of the branch:
  • Anticipates, identifies, detects and analyzes strategically relevant issues and ensures the branch is responding appropriately by developing and managing appropriate plans, approaches and strategies.
  • Ensures the ED is aware and briefed as to emerging issues, proposed solutions and action to resolve issues working with division representatives to resolve issues prior to reaching a level requiring ED attention and/or intervention as appropriate.
  • Act as a broker on the issues between the Deputy Minister's office, Assistant Deputy Minister's office, and other branch EDs offices. Manages DM and ADM requests on an urgent basis or resulting from meetings and committees, including those originating from the ministry Executive Team meetings, ADM Steering Committee, and HR Transformation.
  • Identifies appropriate areas of branch, division or ministry required for development of responses and identifies and manages resources to complete work within timelines.
  • Deals effectively with politically sensitive issues raised by DM and ADMs as well as department clients, including providing accurate and timely information and balancing confidentiality provisions, program and service integrity and the needs of clients and stakeholders.
  • Facilitates actions, responses, and integrated resolutions by bringing the key players together and/or assigning responsibility to directors.
  • Reviews documents, assesses risk and prepares "alerts" to urgent or sensitive matters with researched potential solutions. Works with other divisions to develop solutions to complex issues and develop recommendations for the ED.
  • Manages preparation of briefings and other materials for the ED and complex and sensitive documents to inform planning and decision-making.
  • Establishes and maintains effective working relationships to ensure the ED is aware of emerging and critical issues and has appropriate input and briefings to make decisions.
Communication and Information Management: Action Requests (AR) / Briefings / Correspondence
Effectively manages communications and information requirements to ensure the efficient and effective operation of the branch and the ED's Office.
  • Establishes, implements and monitors comprehensive communication and information management strategies to facilitate and enhance communication and information flow within the division and externally.
  • Provides and ensures briefings and correspondence succinctly identify the issues, meet quality standards, and reflect the government/department's policy or position.
  • Responds to and resolves enquiries, often of an urgent and sensitive nature, through management of activities internal and external to the branch.
  • Manages the production of ARs to ensure effective processes and timely results.
  • Recommends to the ED the approval/return of briefings on atypical/complex matters.
  • Prepares briefings as required.
  • Manages the administration of FOIP requests for the branch, advises when appropriate and works with the FOIP office and any other key contacts to provide responses and resolve issues that may arise.
Branch Management, Planning and Support
As a member of the ED's senior management team, which is the decision-making body for the branch, provides expertise and input into decisions and planning activities for the branch, and, where appropriate takes the lead to ensure delivery of required results. Also develops strategies, communicates and interprets direction from the ED to branch representatives. This includes:
  • Fostering, facilitating, and leading consultation, collaboration, and participation in activities across the branch.
  • Managing strategic and transitional planning for the branch, including providing direction to and integrating perspectives of senior branch representatives to ensure plans reflect division priorities and strategic direction of the ministry and Government.
  • Developing, managing and evaluating operational management systems and processes to ensure branch business requires are met, efficiencies are enhanced and compliance with ministry requirements.
  • Leading and managing special projects cutting across the branch, division and ministry to facilitate division outcomes.
  • Maintaining effective linkages with internal and external partners.
  • Representing the branch on inter-divisional committees (e.g. to implement department and government-wide systems such as ARTS).
  • Coordinating, and preparing when necessary (short-timelines) background information, presentation material and speaking notes for the ED.
Project Management
Leads and provides support to initiatives and projects that address business needs or integrate various branch priorities. May be required to travel.

Branch/Office Administration
professional and administrative staff members within the ED's office are provided with guidance to ensure outcomes are delivered in accordance with business plan goals.
  • Takes a system approach to improving administrative processes across the branch and plan and coordinate such things as accommodation and equipment requirements.
Budget Coordination
  • Oversees the coordination of branch budgeting activities/documents required by finance including budgeting pressures, and spending scenarios.
  • Monitors and advises branch directors on financial matters.
Branch Liaison
  • Maintains strong and effective relationships with corporate functions within the ministry to ensure the outcomes of the division are appropriately represented and are met.


  • The position is responsible for apprising the ED of major issues that arise, as well as the strategies and progress in resolving those issues. On-going responsibilities and day-to-day management of issues and operations of the ED office are done independently as well as under the general direction of the ED. The strategies and processes that are handled and implemented by this position impact the operational accountability of the ADM and the Deputy Minister.
  • This position has a key role in communicating information and providing direction to staff on behalf of the ED to ensure expected standards of the ED are met.
  • The position is responsible for many results that affect the branch on a day-to-day basis. For example, responses and updates to the Assistant Deputy Minister/Deputy Minister offices.
  • Is the primary portal for the Assistant Deputy Minister, Deputy Minister, branch Directors and stakeholders to address issues, concerns or inquires, disseminate information and assess needs, determine appropriate work in areas within the department (and or government) for response, track and respond with an outcome to originator.
  • Works collaboratively with other departmental Divisions on joint assignments, initiatives or projects.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

Work is done in alignment with the division and ministry's vision and values, business plan and strategies and the branch's operational plan. As a member of Leadership Team, gains key understandings of the key issues of the branch and division. Involvement in key business processes leads to a primarily self-directed role. Minimal direction is received. The Issues Coordinator:

  • Work is done in alignment with the division and ministry's vision and values, business plan and strategies and the branch's operational plan. As a member of Leadership Team, gains key understandings of the key issues of the branch and division. Involvement in key business processes leads to a primarily self-directed role. Minimal direction is received. The Issues Coordinator:
  • Independently facilitates the resolution of as many issues as possible without involving the ED and before the issue escalates (in most instances the incumbent is the first point of contact in the branch with the ADM and DM and other ADM's offices).
  • Exercises discretion when formulating branch responses and when deciding what needs to be reviewed by the ADM.
  • Provides advice and guidance to branch directors within the division in terms of carrying out the ED's agenda.
  • Discusses priorities with branch directors when requests for information, briefings, or decisions are required and recommends options for resolving conflicting priorities.
  • Consults, advises or influences courses of action within the context of branch/division/ministry priorities and goals.


Clients Frequency Nature and Purpose of Contact
Office of the Assistant Deputy Minister Daily Disseminate information, provide strategic advice and/or direction or referral
Other Centres and Sectors Frequently Disseminate information, provide strategic advice and/or direction or referral and coordination of priorities and projects
Office of the SFO & Administrative Services Frequently Problem solving, planning innovation and collaboration
Ministry Communications As needed Problem solving, planning innovation and collaboration

Supervision Exercised

  • None

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