Senior Specialist, Innovation- External Engagement
Ottawa, ON, CA
17h ago

Sector : Policy and Innovation

Language Designation : Bilingual

Language Skill Levels (Read / Write / Speak) : BBB

Salary Range : $89823.44 to $112279.30

Position Status : Permanent Full Time

We’re not your typical government agency

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) exists for a single reason : to make housing affordable for everyone in Canada.

We’re mobilizing the expertise and energy of governments, non-profits, lenders, developers, social entrepreneurs and co-ops to create the future of housing.

At CMHC, we believe that everyone in Canada should have a place to call home.

Experience a Results-Only Work Environment™ (ROWE™)

At CMHC, we trust you to get the job done. We’ve shifted from managing people to managing work. Each employee is 100% autonomous and 100% accountable.

You can choose where you need to be and when you need to be there to meet your objectives. You’re in control of your time and are trusted to make the right decisions.

The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation is looking for innovators to join the Housing Supply Challenge team to help with the design and delivery of several housing competitions addressing different aspects of housing.

The Housing Supply Challenge is a $300M initiative announced in Budget 2019 to reduce the barriers associated to the creation of housing supply.

The Challenge is an opportunity to think about how we can address barriers to affordable housing in ways that haven’t been tried before working with municipalities and clients who can help us find the way.

This position reports to the Innovation team in our Office of the SVP, Policy and Innovation sector. This sector is the change agent for operational efficiencies.

About the role

We’re constantly evolving to build an inclusive housing system through research, design, innovation and partnerships. You will oversee the strategic thinking around and the delivery of some key Research and Innovation related programs established at the implementation stage of the National Housing Strategy.

You will be responsible for selecting and interpreting relevant research projects, structuring topics, conversations and business intelligence and providing such information back to subject matter experts.

An important component of this role will be to ensure alignment with internal policy work at CMHC and supporting external groups with their information needs.

You will promote a culture change outside CMHC by getting more people interested in housing policy and research, building buy-in and interest in the vision from the National Housing Strategy (NHS) and driving sector movement towards this vision.

  • You will also advise senior management on policy and program strategy and execution, and build and maintain relationships with internal and external key influencers to support the Corporation'
  • s overall innovation network of expertise. You will serve as a conduit and connector between various internal and external groups, including the National Housing Council, consultants, academic networks, and promotes a new culture of collaboration and excellence.

    You will ensure alignment, quality and rigour in research and demonstrations to effect change in the sector AND be relevant to the development of future Government of Canada policies and programs under the NHS.

    This will help us make housing affordable for everyone in Canada.

    What you will need

  • Postgraduate degree in a relevant field such as business, urban planning, engineering or social science.
  • Minimum of five years of relevant experience.
  • Demonstrated experience in program administration.
  • Keen understanding of research, knowledge creation and translation processes / methodologies, with a demonstrated credibility with academia and relevant external stakeholders.
  • Understanding of the implications of public policy and political environment on federal and provincial housing programs.
  • Sound analytical skills with demonstrated ability to capture and synthesize information to develop strategic business plans.
  • Advanced critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Ability to make a persuasive, clear presentation of ideas that will convince others and gain acceptance of proposals or plans.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills, including the ability to speak and write clearly and succinctly in a variety of settings and styles to communicate messages that have the desired effect.
  • Additional Assets (if applicable)

  • Masters or PhD degree considered an asset. Change Management or Innovation certificate(s). Experience overseeing peer-review processes (committees, panels) considered an asset.
  • Direct housing sector experience and understanding of housing industry key players and delivery.

    What you will be doing

  • Coordinate and oversee work with an external client support organization
  • Build relationships with potential partners (both for applicants and CMHC)
  • Coordinate and oversee an external engagement plan to promote the program
  • Support external relationships with key clients (ie, FCM)
  • Operations and Program Delivery

  • Leads program delivery and project management of specific component(s) of the Innovation and Reseach suite of programs. These include :
  • 1. Solution Lab in Housing Excellence Initiative;
  • 2. NHS Demonstration Initiative;
  • 3. Housing Expert Community; and

    4. Academic Research Initiative (including CMHC Housing Research Awards, CMHC Housing Fellowship Program, Collaborative Housing Research Network).

  • Manages the application review process for program-related applications within the associated policy framework and delegated financial authorities.
  • Perform in-depth analysis of documentation, funding applications, project proposals, and documents.

  • Drives various stakeholders to deliver work outputs and leverages these to accomplish the overall objectives of Innovation and Research.
  • Works within a measurement framework, reviews progress against key milestones and targets, reports to management in a timely manner and provides input into divisional vision, direction setting, business planning and development of policy enhancements for the functional area.
  • Manages issues of a politically sensitive nature using critical thinking, judgment and experience to find a solution.
  • Ensures, during the application review stage that applicant request s comply with the program criteria and eligibility criteria.
  • Negotiates directly with applicants on applications that could involve some complex concepts.

    Operational Oversight

  • Identifies and manages risk by ensuring due diligence while reviewing and approving complex applications, monitoring the quality of results and reviewing key performance indicators.
  • Collaborate and contribute to housing innovation and research landscape by leveraging corporate research funding in priority areas and to contributing to the development of timely and relevant housing data and information by internal and external stakeholders.
  • Provides expert functional advice and guidance to the regional network of client facing staff and provides business intelligence and knowledge of program outcomes and outputs to Housing Needs Policy and Research and Assisted Housing.
  • Provide thought leadership in areas of expertise and provide expert advice for responses to dockets and development of briefing materials.

  • Reviews and approves reports on activities funded or completed through the initiatives, as well as approving inputs to the functional reports, corporate reports, annual report, reporting on project level information to the Minister'
  • s Office, and any other reports requiring input.

    Culture Change / Outreach

  • Promotes a new culture for ensuring new mechanisms and ways of doing work are implemented, including technical and policy-related changes.
  • Helps shape strategic direction for the housing policy and research areas, and motivates various key players to come up with new and innovative ways of solving some of the biggest housing-related problems and challenges.
  • Enables and cultivates subject matter expertise for housing policy and research both internally and externally, by focussing on developing the next generation of experts from outside Government.
  • Fosters a client-centred, focused, performance-oriented culture while building and maintaining relationships with senior-level stakeholders within the housing industry and the federal government.

  • Leads the coordination of processes to ensure Programs (and supported projects) are given visibility. Communicate research results and represent the Corporation at conferences, industry events and intergovernmental meetings.
  • Leads the development of the Communications and Marketing plan by providing design details, expected results to the Public Affairs staff to ensure information is clear, concise, and achieves established milestones.
  • Reviews articles, videos and other related marketing tools prepared by staff and the communications team to share and disseminate best practices and to ensure / promote federal visibility.

    People Leadership (Human Relations Skills)

  • Skills in motivating, understanding, and / or developing people are critical to the achievement of results through others
  • Does this sound like you?

    Click the apply now button and create an account (it should take about 30 seconds). We’re excited to hear from you!

    Posting closing date : Note, the competition may remain active until filled.

    Job Requisition ID : 4467

    Primary Location : Ottawa , Ontario

    Other Location(s) : Position can be located anywhere in Canada

    Security Requirement : Secret

    Travel Requirement : Occasional

    We sincerely thank all candidates for their interest, however, please note that only those applicants selected for further consideration will be contacted.


    CMHC is an employer that values diversity and encourages the learning and use of both Canada's official languages. CMHC is committed to employment equity and actively encourages application from women, Indigenous people, persons with disabilities and visible minorities

  • If selected for an interview or testing, please advise us if you require an accommodation.
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