Use of consultants policy

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    Policy Owner: People and Culture
    Approval: Board of Directors
    First Approved: July 2002
    Effective Date: N/A


    This policy applies to practices regarding the hiring of external consultants.


    The purpose of this policy is to set out the rules and procedures for hiring consultants and monitoring their work. The Toronto Community Housing Corporation hires consultants and contractors to help it carry out its mission, when:

    • the consultant’s skills and knowledge are not generally available within the corporation; TCHC Use of Consultants Policy

    • the consultant’s expertise is required to supplement that of current staff;

    • the consultant is expected, as a result of the network of contacts and projects performed for other organizations, to bring a “best practice” perspective to a project.

    Definition of a consultant

    A consultant is someone who does work for TCHC on contract for a limited, defined period of time. The consultant must be considered a “contractor” (as opposed to an “employee”) under Canada Customs and Revenue Agency regulations.

    Purchasing procedures for hiring consultants

    Consultants and consulting firms will be hired within the purchasing policies and signing authorities of the Toronto Community Housing Company.

    The Purchasing Unit will report regularly to the Chief Executive Officer on the use of consultants. Reports to the Board will be presented as required.

    Conditions for hiring consultants

    When it is appropriate, staff will provide the Chief Executive Officer with a justification for the contracting of consulting services.

    Before a consultant can be hired, there must be a written contract for services, including:

    • scope,

    • deliverables, along with a plan for regular reporting on achievement of deliverables,

    • costs,

    • timeframes,

    • invoicing, and

    • conditions for termination of services.

    An objective party should develop recommendations or work plans as part of the initiative.

    Consequences of failing to comply

    Contracts that do not follow the requirements of this policy will not be approved.

    Special conditions for hiring former employees

    These rules applies to former employees of:

    • the former Metro Toronto Housing Company,

    • the former Toronto Housing Company and

    • the current Toronto Community Housing Company.

    Former employees may not be hired as consultants if they have received a separation payment or early retirement incentive unless: 

    • the contract does not exceed six months and

    • the contract is approved by the Chief Executive Officer. 

    Like all contractors, former employees must meet the Conditions for Hiring a Consultant above.

    All former employees, whether or not they have received a separation payment or early retirement incentive, will be paid as contractors, not employees. That means that they will not be:

    • paid through the payroll of the TCHC;

    • entitled to benefits;

    • entitled to pension contributions;

    • older than the mandatory retirement age for TCHC; or

    • compensated for items for which they would not otherwise be compensated as an independent consultant.