Our Experience Assessment System: A Primer
Engineering Applicants, APEGA, and the Public Benefit From Competency-Based Model
APEGA Salary Survey Enters New Era
If you’re a professional engineer in Alberta or applying to become one, you may have heard about our competency-based assessment (CBA) model of evaluating applications. But do you know what it’s all about? Rolled out in 2018 and funded in part by the Government of Alberta, CBA assesses not only whether applicants meet the work experience requirements to practise engineering in Alberta, but also whether they possess the appropriate competencies to ensure that their practice is safe and skilled. This approach is well tested and proven by Engineers and Geoscientists British Columbia, and it’s widely recognized as a best practice for examining experience. It benefits all APEGA engineering applicants by enabling them to play a bigger role in the success of their application. And it benefits members and the public by ensuring properly experienced and competent people are being moved forward into engineering positions. Internationally trained applicants realize an extra benefit, because they are more likely to hit timeliness targets set by the federal Forum of Labour Market Ministers for recognition of foreign qualification. CBA has helped eliminate multiple rewrites of work experience, which were often required under the prior system. Although the CBA model increases the upfront time it takes applicants to submit their information, it
also helps APEGA provide a high level of fairness and consistency. Every applicant’s experience reflects on APEGA, our professions, and our relationship with applicants, members, and the public. A clearer and more efficient system means: • less frustration about APEGA • a better APEGA brand • improved value for the professional engineering designation After releasing the CBA system to members last year, we’ve gathered your feedback on system performance and are using it to make improvements. We’re also currently making strides with our Membership Experience (MEx) program, which has strong ties to CBA. We’re combining feedback from our members and working sessions with subject-matter experts to create a modern portal—one that will greatly improve the online experience of our membership. Once we’ve completed CBA for engineering applicants, we will use it to inform and create the foundation of a CBA model for our geoscience applicants.
To minimize disruption in 2019, the questionnaire itself was the same as the one the year before. But the report itself is different. For one thing, we’re no longer publishing full highlights in The PEG . You’ll still be able to download the report from the website, of course. The member report provides information on: • Regional compensation trends • Employment trends • Responsibility level guide • Base salary and total compensation median values • Base salary by gender In previous years, our highlights included mean values. In 2019 median values are reported, because on occasion the mean may not be representative of the market due to the range of salary reporting. In 2020 and beyond, the salary survey member report will be released and promoted in a fall edition of the ePEG newsletter, and you’ll be able to click through from there. We’ll continue to provide a full report for those who would like to purchase it. Questions or feedback? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
For good reason, results of our annual salary survey make up one of APEGA’s most sought-after publications. Rebranded this year as Health Wealth Career: APEGA Member Report , the publication is better than ever. Why? In 2019 we switched survey administrators, helping us align the report with our vision of improving member and permit holder services on every platform. Mercer, the new administrator, is a wholly owned subsidiary of MARSH & McLENNAN, a global professional services firm. This change will help us leverage Mercer’s global survey arm and develop the salary survey to a world- class level. The member report, online now, is a compilation and analysis of data collected during our survey. It provides you, our members and permit holders, with unbiased salary and benefits comparisons across a wide range of industries in Alberta. Data for this study are collected and reported using eight distinct responsibility levels, 10 industry sectors, and 10 branch regions across the province. In 2019, 201 permit holders participated in the survey, representing more than 14,441 APEGA members. Those numbers are a decrease from last year, but they’re still part of an overall upward trend. In 2015, the total number of members represented was 13,464, employed by 156 permit holders.
Please note: engineering licensee applicants do use our competency-based assessment system, but P.L. (Eng.) and P.L. (Geo.) applicants do not . These are two different types of membership. An engineering licensee has met all academic and experience requirements for licensure as a P.Eng. and can practise independently—but is not yet a Canadian citizen. Those with a P.L. (Eng.) designation practise within a clearly defined scope of practice only.
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16 | PEG WINTER 2019
WINTER 2019 PEG | 17
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