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Frequently Asked Questions

Why Should I work with Portage Personnel?

Unlike many of our competitors who simply collect then add resumes to a databases, we invest the time necessary to get to know each applicant.

We're dedicated to developing strong, working relationships, by educating, informing and involving you in each step of the hiring process. We'll take the time to explain the benefits of working with us and answer any questions you may have.

Are there fees related with registering?

There is no fee to register. With the introduction of Bill 139, “Applicant Paid Fees” are against the law. (SHOULD WE ATTACH THE LINK TO BILL 139?)

If I am a registered candidate do I need to re apply for a position advertised on the website?

As you are a registered candidate you need not re-apply for positions. If you meet the mandatory criteria listed in the position we will definitely get in touch with you. However if you see a position advertised and you believe you do meet the requirements and would like to be considered please contact our office directly. Please note your resume must demonstrate how you meet the mandatory criteria required.

What is a Security Clearance?

A security clearance is a certification granted by the Canadian Industrial Security Directorate (CISD) of Public Works and Government Services Canada.

Why do I need Security Clearance?

Government Security Policy requires that individuals undergo a personnel-screening process if their duties or tasks necessitate access to CLASSIFIED/PROTECTED information and assets. This applies to all positions within the Federal Government, or when an individual's duties or tasks require access to essential persons or installations critical to the national interest that are deemed to afford regular and consistent access to classified information and assets.

This process involves verification of qualifications, criminal records checks and, as required, credit checks. Until the required checks are complete, individuals cannot have access to CLASSIFIED/PROTECTED information, assets and/or certain restricted work sites.

Security clearances that are typically required include:

  • Reliability Status
  • Level I (Confidential)
  • Level II (Secret)
  • Level III (Top Secret)

The application process takes time. We hope your clearance is processed as quickly as possible; however, the clearance approval process is outside of our control.

Why do I need to duplicate my security clearance with Portage Personnel when I already have one?

With recent changes within Canadian Industrial Security Directorate (CISD) of PWGSC, all security clearances must be duplicated, and held, by the organization awarded the contract for services.

Why do I need fingerprints?

Fingerprints are requested for reasons including but not limited to:

  • An out of country check is required;
  • If the applicant has a very common name;
  • If the applicant has had a criminal conviction;

There is no cost for the clearance application with our firm but there is a cost for fingerprints.

If fingerprints are required to complete your background check, Portage Personnel will contact you with further information.

Does my security clearance expire?

Security clearances are valid for ten years and are subject to cancellation by Public Works or at the request of the sponsoring organization if they are not in use.

How are resumes validated?

These instructions are to be followed by Federal Government Departments when validating resumes submitted by Suppliers (Agencies) regarding temporary help requirements under the THS Standing Offer (SO)

  • Resumes are validated (not evaluated) against the Client's mandatory requirements (i.e./ does the resume meet or not meet all mandatory requirements)
  • The resumes submitted by the lowest priced Supplier must be validated before all others (Right of First Refusal).
  • If the resumes submitted by the lowest priced Supplier do not meet all the mandatory requirements specified in your Request for Availability (RFA), the client can then move on to the second lowest priced Supplier's resumes, and continue this step until a resume that meets all mandatory requirements is found.
  • No further resumes from the higher priced Suppliers are to be validated once a resume that meets all your mandatory criteria is found.
If several Suppliers send the resume of the same resource and all have confirmed that they have received the resource's permission to do so, who wins the contract?

Assuming this resource (candidate) meets the mandatory requirements of the request, the Federal Department User must issue the contract to the lowest priced Supplier, providing that the Supplier has received the candidate's permission to submit his/her resume.

What is a Standing Offer?

A Standing Offer is not a contract for the provision of services and neither party is legally bound as a result of signing the Standing Offer document alone. The intent of a Standing Offer is to establish a framework to permit the expeditious processing of individual call-ups, which will result in legally binding contracts for the services defined in individual call-ups that fall within the scope of the Standing Offer.

What is a Supply Arrangement?

A Supply Arrangement allows Canada to solicit bids from a pool of pre-qualified suppliers. A Supply Arrangement is not a contract for the provision of services and neither party is legally bound as a result of signing the supply arrangement document alone. The intent of a supply arrangement is to establish a framework to permit the expeditious processing of individual solicitations, which result in legally binding contracts for the services, defined in individual solicitations that fall within the scope of the supply arrangement.

Why did PWGSC issue both a Standing Offer and Supply Arrangement for Learning Services?

PWGSC issued both a Standing Offer and Supply Arrangement in order to provide clients with maximum flexibility, as there are limitations as to what is allowed under a Standing Offer.

How many Suppliers am I allowed to invite under the Standing Offer (SO) for THS?

In order to be time efficient, PWGSC recommends that Federal Department Users go to as many Suppliers that are listed on their "search results" as they deem necessary to fill their requirement.

If several Suppliers send the resume of the same THS resource and all have confirmed that they have received the THS resource's permission to do so, who gets the call-up?

Assuming this THS resource (candidate) meets the mandatory requirements of the THS requirement, the Federal Department User must issue the call-up to the lowest priced Supplier, providing that the Supplier has received the candidate's permission to submit his/her resume.

What justification is considered acceptable as to why the lowest priced Supplier was not issued a call-up?

The acceptable justifications under the SO component for not awarding a call-up to the lowest priced Supplier(s) listed in your search result sheet are the following:

  • The Supplier has confirmed that resources are not available;
  • The Supplier has not responded to the Request for Availability by the date stated in the Request; or
  • The resume(s) provided by the Supplier, in response to the Request for Availability, do not meet one of the mandatory criteria specified in your requirement.
Are Federal Department Users allowed to talk to THS Suppliers directly?

Yes, if specific internal Departmental policy allows.

If a THS resource leaves or is not effective and terminated, who has the right of replacement?

The opportunity to replace the resource is usually provided to the Supplier named in the Call-up/Contract. In cases where this Supplier is non-responsive or the suggested replacement THS resource does not meet the original mandatory requirements, the Federal Department User can then cancel the initial Call-up/Contract and initiate a new search in the THS On-Line System.

Do you offer training in common business applications?

We offer on-line training in the following software applications. Requests for training must be submit via email.

  • MS Word
  • MS Excel
  • MS PowerPoint
  • MS Access
  • Quickbooks Pro 2000
Do you evaluate your candidates?

We request that all candidates within the fields of Clerical; Administration and Accounting complete assessments within the following:

  • MS Word
  • MS Excel
  • MS PowerPoint
  • MS Access
  • Corel WordPerfect 9.0
  • Clerical Tests
  • Keyboarding speed and error rate (in English and/or French)
  • Numeric and alphanumeric data entry speed and accuracy (in English and/or French)

Language Assessments:

  • Verbal language skills (English and/or French)
  • Proofreading/grammar skills (English and/or French)
  • Written comprehension (English and/or French).

Whether you're looking to hire a new employee, or, if you're looking for new career change, call us, and see how “We put the “Human”, back into Human Resources”.