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Medical Matters: the People People

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July Messenger 2022, Medical Matters | Posted July 14, 2022

By Jessica McPhee, BAC, MBA, Director, People & Culture

Read time: 2 minutes

Although CPSA’s People & Culture team mostly works behind the scenes, we consider ourselves the People People, since one of our main responsibilities is helping set our team members up for success in their day-to-day work. Ultimately, if we’re doing a good job, regulated members—like you—get the support you need from CPSA.

First, let’s talk about what the People & Culture team does. Once known as Human Resources, our team has grown to become much more than the traditional nomenclature. We’re responsible for HR functions, such as creating policies, hiring new team members, supporting performance management and sourcing professional development; however, we also work more broadly to support a positive culture and engaging workplace, find opportunities to engage more diverse perspectives from under-represented groups, and act as a strategic partner to the leadership team, helping our team members model our organizational values and characteristics.

Recognizing we must be innovative and forward-thinking in our people practices, we transitioned from a more tactical human resources team to an all-encompassing People & Culture team. I’m the first to acknowledge we still have work to do to fully embrace this philosophy, but it’s one we’re committed to adopting. The beauty of People & Culture’s work is there’s rarely a good black-and-white solution—it’s a lot of weighing options and working to balance the needs of the organization and our people.

Lately, I’ve been frequently asked, “how has the pandemic affected your work and the people at CPSA?” Although the challenges we encountered pale in comparison to those faced by regulated members over the last few years, the pandemic made connecting with each other as a team challenging and forced us to rethink a lot of things. While we were able to avoid any pandemic-related layoffs, we saw a significant shift in our workforce and considerable challenges recruiting new team members. In 2021, we modeled the leadership we witnessed from regulated members by choosing to implement a COVID-19 vaccination policy for our CPSA team members. Despite a smaller talent pool, we took new and innovative approaches to continue bringing on new team members at a time when our recruitment needs more than doubled.

The way our team works, how our organization collaborates and even where we do our work has, in large part, changed. Based on feedback from our team members, CPSA has introduced a hybrid work option for most positions, which helps team members balance their personal responsibilities with their responsibilities to our external groups—like you. The transition hasn’t been seamless, but as a learning organization, we continue to look for people-centric approaches to embrace the uncertainty this pandemic continues to throw at us.

As for what’s on the horizon, People & Culture is thrilled to oversee a revitalization of Customer Experience (CX) at CPSA. We know there is always room for improvement when it comes to supporting our teams and partners, as well as regulated members and Albertans. Our new CX Lead is helping us reimagine the best ways to provide excellent experiences and my hope is, in the coming months and years, you’ll start to notice a positive, marked change in your interactions with CPSA.

I welcome your suggestions on CX or people practices, and I hope you start observing a culture shift at CPSA in the coming years.

A woman smiles for a portrait-style headshot. She has blonde hair and is wearing a red shirt with a black blazer. Jessica McPhee (she/her) joined CPSA in 2018 as the Director, Communications. Over the last 20 years, Jessica has worked in private, public, non-profit and charitable sectors fine-tuning her communication and leadership skills for organizations including the Edmonton Oilers, Shaw, Edmonton Public Library and CPSA. Since completing her MBA in 2021, she’s broadened her scope by transitioning into the role of Director, People & Culture.

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