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1407 - Secondments

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  1. The GNWT secondment program promotes and facilitates the exchange of employees through temporary assignments between the GNWT and other organizations.
  2. The objective of a secondment is one or more of the following:
    1. To provide a mechanism for organizations to work together to meet short-term human resource needs when those needs cannot be effectively met through the regular recruitment process;
    2. To support the development of an employee’s knowledge, skills, abilities and experience;
    3. To improve the knowledge base between the GNWT and other organizations, for the purpose of creating and supporting informed policy development, improved services and to strengthen the GNWT’s relationships and partnerships with other organizations;
    4. To contribute to the objectives of the GNWT’s social and economic policy; and
    5. To increase the GNWT’s access to and acquisition of specialized knowledge, diverse skills, expertise, technology and best practices.


  1. These guidelines and procedures apply to all departments, boards and agencies of the GNWT except the NWT Power Corporation.


  1. Deputy Head is any deputy minister of a department, superintendent of a divisional education council, chief executive officer or president of a board, authority, agency or any such person as may be appointed as a deputy head.
  2. Department means a Department, Board or Agency of the GNWT.
  3. Employing Organization is the employer of the secondee before the secondment.
  4. FMB is the Financial Management Board of the GNWT.
  5. Interchange Canada is the name of the formal secondment agreement used by the Government of Canada when seconding employees to and from the federal government.
  6. Outside Organization is an organization that is not part of the Public Service of the Northwest Territories. It may be a private sector organization or another level of government such as municipal, provincial and federal.
  7. Receiving Organization is the organization for which the secondee will be working during the secondment.
  8. Secondment is the temporary assignment of a GNWT employee to a position in an outside organization, or an individual with a position in an outside organization to a position with the GNWT.
  9. Secondee is an employee who is on temporary assignment under the terms and conditions of a formal secondment agreement.


  1. Employees of the GNWT may be seconded to a position in an outside organization, or an individual with a position in an outside organization may be seconded to a position with the GNWT.
  2. The Interchange Canada Program will be utilized to second employees to and from the Government of Canada.
  3. The maximum term of a secondment, including extensions, shall not exceed three years.
  4. If possible, a secondment to the GNWT should be filled in accordance with the Government's Affirmative Action Policy.
  5. To be considered for a secondment, a GNWT employee must meet the following criteria:
    1. Have indeterminate employment status;
    2. Have completed the probationary period; and
    3. Have formally requested and been granted approval from the Deputy Head of the employing department.
  6. Secondments, including extensions and/or amendments, require approval from the employing department’s Deputy Head.
  7. FMB approval is required for secondments where the Government of the Northwest Territories incurs costs exceeding $10,000.
  8. Where FMB approval is required, the approval must be given 30 days prior to the start of the secondment. Where FMB approval is required for the initial secondment, it is also required for extensions and/or amendments at least 30 days in advance.
  9. An extension of the term of a secondment requires mutual consent of all parties to the agreement.
  10. A secondment may be terminated before its term has expired. This can be done at the request of any one party on notice to the others. Notice of 30 days must be given, in writing, to the Deputy Head of the employing department.
  11. Where a secondee is originally from the GNWT, the employing department will make every reasonable effort to return the employee to their home position at a salary level equivalent to the employee's salary prior to the secondment, plus any increases or increments the employee would have received had he/she remained in the original position.
  12. Within one month prior to the expiry of a secondment, the employing department will identify the position to which the secondee will return.
  13. If a position is not available and a reasonable job offer cannot be made to the secondee at the end of the secondment, the Staff Retention Policy will apply.
  14. The Receiving Organization usually pays the full costs associated with the secondment including all salary, benefits, travel, administrative, moving to and from the secondment location and any other related expenses, except in the case of cost-shared arrangements.
  15. The secondee may continue to be paid by the Employing Organization. The Employing Organization invoices the Receiving Organization for the salary, benefits and other costs as shown in the agreement. Costs are reimbursed to the Employing Organization, as applicable.
  16. Removals / MTA administrator will provide assistance with removal arrangements as outlined in the secondment agreement.


  1. The Deputy Head of a client department advises a HR client services representative of a potential secondment and the tentative terms and conditions of the secondment.
  2. The client services representative provides an analysis of the proposed secondment and advises the Deputy Head of the client department whether FMB approval is required in addition to Deputy Head approval.
  3. Where FMB approval is required, a client service representative assists the department in preparing a draft submission for review. The Deputy Head of the department will submit the final submission document to the FMB.
  4. Once appropriate approvals are in place, a client service representative prepares the secondment agreement for signature by the parties.
  5. Copies of the secondment agreement and position description are retained by the secondee, the Receiving Organization and the Employing Organization, and one copy is placed on the secondee’s personnel file by a client service representative.
  6. The client services representative provides all parties with three months advance notice of the secondment completion date.
  7. The Receiving Organization completes a performance appraisal on the secondee upon completion of the secondment.