Fact Sheet # 22a) Monitoring System

Level 3

Element: Evaluation for Performance Measurement and Continuous Improvement

Outcome 22: Organization develops its human rights monitoring system.

Indicator 22a): Organization is putting in place a monitoring system to assess its performance against set anti-discrimination and employment equity objectives/targets.

Possible Measures and Data Sources:

  • Full overall representation of three of the four designated groups or employment equity leader within their industry (better overall representation).
  • Qualitative data system for employment equity and anti-discrimination trends.
  • Documented human rights best practices. 

Indicator Description

Now that the organization is collecting anti-discrimination and employment equity (EE) data on an on-going basis, it can start to assess its human rights data in a more integrated way in light of set anti-discrimination and EE objectives/targets. An integrated monitoring system enables the organization to highlight human rights trends and best practices across all activities of the organization and to share its successes and challenges with its employees and clients.

At Level 2, your organization put in place a data management method for tracking discrimination complaints/grievances and employment equity requirements. At Level 3, the organization looks at its available human rights data and analyzes it in a more integrated way. It establishes a structure to understand its human rights portrait based on information gathered from various sources. This helps the organization to 1) better identify issues; 2) proactively address issues and discover opportunities; 3) effectively consult and gain support from senior leadership and stakeholders; 4) potentially reduce complaints and legal actions; and 5) identify new trends related to EE.

For example, the organization may analyze the data gathered from the EE work plan and surveys and cross-reference them with its complaints on duty to accommodate received over the last 3 years. This could provide insight on how well the accommodation policy is integrated within the workplace and potentially highlight areas for improvement.

Suggested Approach

Several types of systems can be used to monitor human rights. Your approach will be determined by the size of your organization and its human rights program, your operational culture in terms of performance measurement and your existing tools and goals:

  • Consider developing a performance measurement framework: Some organizations may choose to design a human rights performance measurement framework. Based on the trends, the organization sets specific human rights goals. In order to assess these goals it establishes a structure to collect objective information. In this context, a performance measurement framework should include strategic outcomes, expected results, performance indicators and associated targets, data sources and data collection frequency as well as the actual data collected for each indicator related to human rights. [1] Other organizations may choose to add human rights outcomes to their overall performance measurement framework. 
  • Use existing balance scorecard or dashboard: Other organizations may prefer to develop a dashboard or use an existing scorecard to monitor progress. Scorecards or dashboards are now widely used in organizations. Dashboards monitor and measure processes. The common understanding of dashboard is that it is more real-time in nature as it is linked directly to systems that capture the information as activities happen. A scorecard, on the other hand, charts progress toward objectives. It displays periodic snapshots of performance associated with an organization's objectives and plans. It measures business activity at a summary level against predefined targets to see if performance is within acceptable ranges. No matter which approach your organization is using to capture its business performance, human rights data, indicators or targets can easily be anchored to it.
  • Have senior leadership drive the monitoring system: In order to be successful, the monitoring system should be seen as a strategic process coming from senior leaders of the organization. It helps secure the resources (human and financial) to implement the monitoring system and gives credibility to the trends and best practices highlighted in the process.

Promising Practices

  • Adding overall EE results to scorecard: One organization, who had been using a scorecard approach for monitoring its business performance, added one specific measure on its EE program. It added the overall EE results of all four designated groups from its workforce analysis to be able to compare them with availability. With this approach, each year, that employer can determine whether or not the organization made progress with respect to the representation of the designated group members in its workforce.
  • Adding action items from the EE Work Plan to the Integrated Human Resources Plan: An organization is incorporating action items it has identified on its EE work plan into its integrated human resources plan. The integrated plan is discussed with senior leadership and shared with all employees.
  • Using Management Accountability Framework (MAF) measures: A public sector organization is using the MAF as its monitoring system to assess its human rights progress in the workplace. It highlights all the measures that are related to human rights matters and analyzes its progress in a consistent manner.

Useful Tools and Links

Canadian Human Rights Commission

Employment Equity Act

Canadian Human Rights Act

Supporting Effective Evaluations: A Guide to Developing Performance Measurement Strategies - Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat

Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) Cycle - ASQ

Plan Do Review Improve cycle - Australia Edith Cowan University

The Deming Cycle - Paul Averson, Balanced Scorecard Institute

Planning and Quality, Plan, Do, Review, Improve Cycle - University of Technology Sidney

La fonction veille et ses outils (Available in French only) - Outils de veille, sécurité économique, stratégies d’influence

Competitive Intelligence Software - Digimind

[1] Supporting Effective Evaluations: A Guide to Developing Performance Measurement Strategies (consulted on October 12, 2012)

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