Two main courses of action animated the discussions at the National Council held this year in Montreal:
Communications; Build a stronger relationship with the members
Finance; Maximize return on investments
The participants to the APS annual meeting targeted improvements to the Association’s communication channels and financial security. The changes will be applied in the following months and there is reason to believe that the membership will notice the results in the near future.
Undoubtedly, the improvement of communication with the members of the Association will be the most visible initiative.
As a result of the intervention from APS National Secretary, Dominique Barrette, the idea to proceed with an in-depth analysis of the members’ expectations towards their association led the way to the development of a perception survey to be implemented soon. This unprecedented initiative to date will allow APS elected officers to thoroughly identify the members’ vision towards their Association. Every one of the eight hundred members will be invited to participate in individual feedback. This initiative belongs to the same family of measures which gave us the individual survey method to submit union demands for the collective agreement negotiations.
By taking this course of action, it will be possible to capture a realistic snapshot of every member’s current state of mind with regard to his or her Union. The whole survey will be conducted professionally and in complete confidentiality. The hope is to reach a participation rate as high as the CROP surveys on the negotiations, to confirm a validated representation of the members’ perceptions.
Still on the communications topic, the Executive Committee supported a resolution to review the layout of our current Website. By modernizing its framework, APS will also considerably reduce the related expenses. For example, the advent of virtual servers wipes out our obligations to pay the substantial costs for physical servers hosted in highly secured locations. These changes will also impact the website operations as a communication tool. Based on the data received from the perception survey, APS’s objective is to further improve the communication with its members.
MORE PROFITABLE INVESTMENTS
A roundtable discussion on the organization’s financial issues at the National Council on Saturday allowed us to perceive a consensus for a new approach to benefit from the Union’s assets. The APS financial security issue has been in the works for quite a while now. The introduction of an investment policy is at the heart of this change. Essentially, APS wishes to maintain its tradition of investing the assets of the organization without ever risking the capital. However, this constraint does not prevent from managing the capital resourcefully. This is why the Executive Committee created an Investment Committee to study more sophisticated options resulting in returns on investment superior to those we have presently. So far, as funds became available, the Treasurer of the Association invested the surplus money in guaranteed certificates of investment (GCI). Going forward, the Investment Committee will be responsible for submitting their recommendations to the Treasurer. The latter will then submit a proposal to the National Executive Committee before making any investment. This is what the policy will bring about for the future. The advent of the process has been a continuous long-term endeavor for the last two years. The Executive reviewed the latest draft of the policy during the meeting on Sunday, November 5th. The final version should be adopted soon.
However, the Investment Committee members have been already appointed and they participated in the National Council’s deliberations on Saturday, November 4th. Nicolas Ouellet from Montreal, Jerry Ding from Edmonton and Nathan Farr from Toronto provided some examples of the potential gains with the investments of the Association assets by introducing a more structured plan. A more effective plan in managing APS funds will positively impact our economic position and give us access to higher return on investments while maintaining the established zero risk in the capital invested.
The members of the Investment Committee are appointed to represent equally both Networks of the Corporation. There is a minimum of four (4) members on the Committee, two from the French Network and two from the English Network. The idea emerged last year as the result of discussions at the National Council. The National Executive Committee subsequently proceeded to the nomination of Nathan Farr and Jerry Ding to represent the English Network while Isabelle Benoit and Nicolas Ouellet were chosen to represent the French Network.
We will supply you a detailed account of the Investment Policy as soon as its finalized version is adopted by the Executive Committee. As for the detailed summary of the weekend’s deliberations, simply follow the link below:
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