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Dive into the Details of Canada's Digital Platform Modernization!
The Canadian government and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) have shared their plan for immigration in a strategy called “An Immigration System for Canada’s Future.” In this strategy, they mentioned that they are making efforts to provide a smooth and user-friendly experience for people using immigration services, both within Canada and internationally.
To stay competitive globally and enhance efficiency, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is planning to introduce a cutting-edge operating platform called Digital Platform Modernization (DPM).
DPM aims to boost efficiency, enabling IRCC to handle the increasing demand for people wanting to work, study, visit, and live in Canada. This platform will bring new features, including a one-stop online hub for immigration programs, improved automation, and digital self-service options.
The strategy explains that DPM will revolutionize how IRCC operates by speeding up processing, enhancing program integrity, and making the immigration process more transparent and people-focused.
HOW WILL DIGITAL PLATFORM MODERNIZATION (DPM) BE IMPLEMENTED?
As per information on the Canadian government website, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s (IRCC) Digital Platform Modernization (DPM) is a multi-year, multi-phase initiative. This is because DPM involves creating a new way of operating, optimizing business processes with modern features. Due to this comprehensive redesign, it will take several years to fully implement.
DPM is set to replace IRCC’s current aging IT platform, the Global Case Management System (GCMS). GCMS is the existing electronic data management system used by IRCC to process applications, both overseas and within Canada.
The implementation of the DPM program will follow three consecutive and overlapping phases to achieve its objectives.
- Phase 1: designed to avoid risks and stabilize GCMS, with a focus on reducing the technical debt that has accumulated over the years in the system
- Phase 2: continues to standardize IT operations and reduce technical debt to prepare the Department for digital transformation
- Phase 3: transform the way that IRCC works and delivers its services to clients and Canadians around the world through the delivery of a new digital platform and the processes and policies that support it
The third phase of the DPM initiative is the most complex, but already underway, running until December 2026.
According to IRCC, DPM will be nimble, flexible, and responsive enough to support growing volumes, actively helping IRCC:
- Reduce application processing times
- Improve tools for officers
- Meet the Government’s immigration and diversity priorities
- Critically respond to the changing needs and expectations of clients as Canada seeks to out-compete other countries for talent
DPM AS PART OF IRCC’s GOAL TO CREATE A MORE WELCOMING EXPERIENCE FOR NEWCOMERS.
The DPM initiative is just one of many actions IRCC is taking to create an efficient, predictable, and timely experience for newcomers to Canada.
As part of this effort, IRCC’s strategy has outlined “actions” it will take. These include:
- Reducing wait times and improving service standards
- Help remove barriers to welcoming the people Canada needs for the future
- Strengthening partnerships with employers and institutions that rely on immigration, while addressing fraud and strengthening student and worker protections
- Improve communications and ensure a human-centric approach
- Make applications more user-friendly, by using digital and virtual technologies
- Continue to advance reconciliation as Canada welcomes newcomers
To reduce waiting times and address backlogs, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has invested significantly in operational capacity, employing technological advancements, and hiring over 1,200 officers during 2022-2023. They are also integrating digital tools to enhance the efficiency of processing requests globally and aligning application intake with available admission spaces to prevent prolonged waiting periods.
For the protection of students and workers, IRCC is set to launch Letter of Acceptance (LOA) verification and implement a Recognized Institutions Framework to maintain the integrity of international student programs and prevent fraud. The Recognized Employer Pilot, initiated by IRCC, offers benefits to compliant employers in occupations facing labor shortages.
In an effort to incorporate diverse perspectives, IRCC plans to establish an advisory body composed of individuals with lived experience in immigration.
This body will guide policy development and service delivery to ensure a more human-centric approach.
Lastly, IRCC will introduce a new Citizenship guide that accurately reflects the history of systemic racism and discrimination experienced by Indigenous Peoples. This initiative aims to contribute to advancing reconciliation as IRCC welcomes newcomers to the country.
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