CAO Performance Evaluation Toolkit
The Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators (CAMA) has introduced a three-step CAO Performance Evaluation Toolkit that will benefit municipalities across the country.
Developed and piloted over a two-year period, the toolkit will enhance the CAO / Council relationship and help local elected officials achieve their strategic goals and objectives. It is available for free to member and non-member municipalities.
An effective working partnership between Council and its CAO can be one of the most critical prerequisites for municipal success.
Local elected officials rely on their CAO to be the link between them and municipal operations; to implement the municipality’s policies and programs; and, to help them achieve their strategic goals and objectives.
That said, in a survey conducted by CAMA in 2014, while a majority of elected officials and CAOs indicated they participated in a performance evaluation process, far less reported they felt prepared for the process or that the outcomes were tied to actual results. Overwhelmingly, both parties identified the need for a performance evaluation system benefiting each.
As a result, CAMA developed the three-step CAO Performance Evaluation Toolkit.
The toolkit was prepared using surveys and best practice research, with input and support from CAMA members, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), public sector / human resource experts, and the International City/County Managers Association (ICMA).
The result is a toolkit that uses a “pick and choose” format, which can be adapted to support existing evaluation processes. It builds on foundational steps and core competencies to help set clear goals for the success of the municipality, to guide and support the evaluation process, and to foster open conversations between Council and CAOs.
INTRODUCTION TO THE TOOLKIT
Our toolkit has a lot of gears and options that might, at first glance, make it appear to be dauntingly complicated. It’s not! It’s really a simple tool. CAMA is pleased to provide you with a webinar (approximately 20 minutes in length) that is designed to show you just how easy it is to use and how it can be customized and scaled to your municipality. The Frequently Asked Questions by Chief Administrative Officers document and the Frequently Asked Questions by Elected Officials document will also help navigate you through the toolkit.
CAMA’s Toolkit is designed to be a system that is flexible for the CAO, Mayor and Council. It’s a tool that lets you construct an evaluation process based on what works for you and your organization. It offers a variety of ways to choose goals, set competencies, conduct your self-assessment, and have ongoing performance evaluation conversations. For CAOs, the toolkit provides a process that uses strategies and templates that can be shared with the Mayor and Council to ensure goals, key results, core competencies, and performance measures are mutually understood. For Mayor and Council, the Toolkit underscores the value of CAO performance conversations, and offers a process for conducting the performance evaluations fairly.
- To access the Performance Evaluation Toolkit click here.
- To introduce the toolkit to your elected officials you may wish to send them an e-mail along with the Evaluation-At-Glance
- The Quick Reference Guide is also a great executive summary of the process.
- Appendix 3 provides a CAO Process Checklist. (Word)
To make it easier to see the final product, we have prepared a sample final evaluation report using form 1.6A Performance Evaluation (Word) and 1.6B Additional Core Competencies (Word). The template with the same competencies should be agreed on prior to starting the evaluation process.
The CAO will also complete the same form separately and submit it to Council prior to them completing their evaluation. The Head of Council and Councillors will also complete this template separately and then the final evaluation report is completed and presented to the CAO. These sample templates also include the CAO’s comments in response to Council’s evaluation. Please modify them to suit your municipality’s requirements
These documents are provided as a guide. They are provided to you below in PDF and in Word format. Please modify them to suit your municipality’s requirements.
2. SAMPLE DOCUMENTS FOR HIRING A CAO (Word)
ICMA Recruitment Guidelines for Selecting a Local Government Administrator
CAMA Model Employment Agreement
Sample Job Descriptions
City Manager Job Description for the City of Grande Prairie (2011)
City of Summerside
3. SAMPLE DOCUMENTS FOR ORGANIZATIONAL IMPROVEMENT (Word)
CAMA's Statement of Purpose
George Cuff's Council—CAO Covenant
Conroy Ross's Evaluation Cycle
Town of Canmore's Guide to Evaluating the CAO's Performance
4. SAMPLE DOCUMENTS FOR THE ANNUAL PERFORMANCE SCHEDULE (Word)
City of Grande Prairie City Manager Performance Review Process Policy No. 120-1
Sample Performance Reviews
City of Grande Prairie CAO Performance Review Template
City of Mississauga Performance Evaluation for SENIOR MANAGEMENT – 2015
5. SAMPLE DOCUMENTS FOR LINKING THE CAO's EVALUATION TO THE STRATEGIC PLAN (Word)
City of Mississauga Performance Evaluation for Senior Management—2015, Part II
Comox Valley Performance Assessment Form
City of Moose Jaw Competency Review
These documents are provided as a guide. Please modify them to suit your municipality's requirements.
1.2A: Job Description (Word)
1.3: Strategic Planning Checklist (Word)
1.6A: Performance Evaluation (Word)
1.6B: Additional Core Competencies (Word)
Compensation Options Template (Word)
Handbook Cover Template (Word)
Final Performance Evaluation Report Template (Word)
Appendix 3: CAO Process Checklist (Word)
PERFORMANCE EVALUATIONS FOR DIRECT REPORTS
It is also important for the Chief Administrative Officer/City Manager to conduct a performance evaluation review for direct reports (Directors/Commissioners/Chiefs/Department Heads). We are therefore pleased to provide you with the following examples for your use:
- A Performance Evaluation Review template (Word) to be completed by the CAO/City Manager and the employee and reviewed during the performance evaluation.
- A Mandate Letter (Word) that the CAO/City Manager can provide to each direct report each year at their performance evaluation. This outlines the expectations for all Departments and also lists some specific expectations for each Department.