Winning Government Job Competitions

Getting into government or promoted within it is not easy, but the ability to succeed in competitions is a skill that can be learned and mastered. This one-day course is a combined job-application and career strategy boot camp that demystifies the government competition process and career ladder.

Delivering an insider’s perspective from experienced civil servants who have run competitions, the workshop will give you the practical skills to succeed in each element of the competition process. You will learn how to read and interpret a Statement of Merit Criteria to see if a job is worth applying for and then draft a cover letter that clearly addresses each of the criteria. You will learn how to prepare for exams and answer interview questions effectively. Strategies for managing your references, avoiding behavioural pitfalls at interviews and countering interview panel biases will be presented. Get strategic advice to develop your knowledge and experiences for your next promotion or your first government job and walk away with the tools to develop an individual career road-map to suit your current and future goals.

Participants are encouraged to bring a copy of a current/past government job posting that outlines/outlined the full statement of merit criteria for a government job that interests/interested them.

  • Topics
  • Audience
  • Instructor
  • Learning strategies and approaches for career success in the federal public service

  • Determining which competitions are worth applying to and assessing your chances of success before applying

  • Understanding the competition process and its steps (application, exam, interview, reference)

  • Effectively handling each step of the competition process

  • Developing an approach and roadmap for your next job application

  • Mid-level public servants (below EX level) interested in career advancement
  • Private sector and non-profit employees, and graduating students interested in entering the federal public service

Andrés J. Drew, BA, BCL, LLB, MSc, is a counsel at the Department of Justice.  He was previously a senior policy adviser at Natural Resources Canada. A bilingual lawyer with more than a decade of experience at the intersection of law, policy, regulation and economics, he has a track record of achieving legislative and regulatory reform by synthesizing and communicating complex issues, negotiating with stakeholders, briefing senior officials and navigating government processes. Andrés is also actively involved in selecting individuals for the Recruitment for Policy Leaders initiative, which seeks out exceptional professionals with diverse achievements and experience for mid- and senior-level roles across the Government of Canada.

"I feel more prepared for future job competitions. The STAR method and TBS guidelines were very useful as I didn't consider using either of them before the course."

This workshop is part of our Online Distance Learning Program 

Certain sessions of this workshop are now offered online via live video conferencing. Online session are indicated in parenthesis in the box below.

Register today by selecting an online session.


Select a session

Winning Government Job Competitions
January 20, 2021
9:00 - 16:00
Winning Government Job Competitions
May 19, 2021
9:00 - 16:00

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