Internal Audit plans its audits in accordance with the results of the risk assessment process and provides assurance that major risks are covered on a rotational basis by the annual audit plan.

The following table discusses the key risks we faced this year, and their ongoing impact into next year.





Our ability to deliver our mandate is challenged by a shift from traditional television to specialty television and digital platforms, rapid technology evolution, changing media consumption habits, and industry fragmentation.

The government’s modernization of Canada’s cultural policies consists of simultaneous initiatives that could profoundly affect our future business model or our mandate. Initiatives launched include the Broadcasting and Telecommunications legislative review and reviews of the Copyright and Radiocommunication Acts.

Our position paper in response to the government’s 2017 consultation on how to strengthen Canadian culture in a digital world explains the benefits of exiting all advertising platforms and receiving replacement funding of $318 million.

Competing priorities may lead the government to narrow our mandate, lessen our independence and/or change our business model, which would have a profound impact on the future of the organization and impact our opportunity to fix our broken business model.


Continue to promote and share strategic plan information with stakeholders both internally
and externally.

Continue to promote our position paper and the benefits of exiting all advertising platforms and receiving replacement funding with stakeholders both internally and externally. Reinforce the need for adequate stable funding with all levels of government.

Retain flexibility when making operating decisions, with alternative plans associated with a potential advertising-free environment.
Develop proactive and reactive communication plans, as required.
Monitor and participate in the various
processes launched.

Develop, implement or modify strategies and contingency plans, as required.

The strategic plan positions what we need to succeed now, as well as in an age beyond traditional broadcasting. It will ensure that the services we provide, and the operating model that supports those services, evolve in tandem with the changing expectations of Canadians and the movements of our industry.

The uncertainty of our future direction may impact self-generated revenues, operating decisions, morale and the retention of key staff.


Competition for the attention of audiences is intensifying. Various media groups, domestic and international, have significant financial strength and are investing heavily to capture the attention of audiences with quality content on various platforms.
Our digital frameworks, including distribution methods and platforms, must be robust and scalable in order to be able to withstand the continued accelerated adoption of distribution methods, evolving audience and partner demands, and disruption in the media landscape.

New distribution methods have led to industry disruption and new revenue models. We must adapt to new realities, often outside traditional industry relationships.

Continue our focus on content on digital platforms, either content shared with broadcast or with digital original content.

Continue and expand partnerships with experienced and successful Over-The-Top (OTT) providers (as long as branding is assured).

CBC and Radio-Canada to offer enhanced advertising-free OTT, with competitive user experiences and functionality.

Align performance measurement to incent optimal decisions by adapting performance indicators to audience content consumption patterns.

Continually evolve the technology to meet audience expectations.
Negotiate rights agreements to ensure access to popular content on feasible financial terms.

Continue to develop and implement data management tools and strategies to enhance our ability to track, personalize and customize content for audiences.


The ability to serve audiences on platforms or through distribution channels they want will impact overall consumption of our content and influence the public value of our services, our advertising and subscription revenue, and
our relevance.


We face financial challenges that include an industry-wide softening of the advertising market and a shift of advertising dollars from linear television to digital platforms.

Regulatory changes may negatively impact subscriber numbers, channel carriage and revenue.

Audience consumption patterns such as cord shaving are reducing broadcast distribution undertakings (BDU) cable and satellite subscriptions.

Financial performance of the various Canadian media groups is putting downward pressure on prices and leading to a more aggressive approach to advertising volumes.

Changes to independent production funds’ eligibility rules may impact the availability and pricing of our independent productions.


Continue to invest primarily in prime-time television, which is the biggest driver of audience and conventional television revenue.

Develop additional compelling, distinctly Canadian programming.

Maximize our multiplatform/multiscreen strategy when broadcasting, acquiring or distributing content.

Leverage new kinds of partnerships or deals to grow new revenue streams or offer new value to existing customers.

Play a leadership role in driving the advertising industry transformation around audience measurement, and automation and reinforce the value and effectiveness of TV advertising.

Continue to implement cost-containment measures established in Strategy 2020.


Further advertising weakening and reduced subscriber revenue may require changes to our strategic plan.

A reduction in independent production funds means less original programming.

The retention and engagement of a strong workforce is essential to achieve strategic objectives.
There is a risk that negative workplace culture incidents, controversy and uncertainty may erode gains around staff engagement and morale and create challenges in recruiting and retaining talent.

Challenge of meeting 2020 diversity targets.

Continue with enterprise change management plan, including support activities linked to major projects that enable Strategy 2020.

Rollout annual engagement survey results and implement action plans to address areas of concern.

Develop action plan and road map for joint initiatives with the Joint Working Group with all unions on workplace culture to address
common issues.

Implement Year 3 of the Culture Roadmap, including an awareness campaign for the cultural census.

Develop and implement the 2018-2021 Inclusion and Diversity Plan.


We will maintain our momentum to train people for this new digital world, train leaders to better support their teams and continue building a
strong foundation of business skills across
the Corporation.


Negotiations are underway for the collective agreement for the new merged French union represented by the Syndicat des Communications de Radio-Canada (SCRC), and the discussions are ongoing with the Canadian Media Guild (CMG) to address key issues during the life of the current agreement expiring March 31, 2019 and for a new collective agreement.

There is a risk that prolonged proceedings to negotiate the first collective agreement could negatively affect the working relationship between management and employees.

There is a risk of disruption to operations due to labour stoppage.


Continue transparent communications to employees and unions, as well as the involvement of employees in the development of strategic initiatives.

Implement clear negotiation mandates that ensure flexibility in working conditions and the reduction of jurisdictional barriers between bargaining units, where applicable.

Update contingency plans in case of labour disruption.

Negotiations with CMG to begin in fall 2018.


CBC and Radio-Canada are among the most prominent and most discussed brands in the country. In addition, they are brands on which every Canadian feels rightly justified in having and expressing an opinion. At any time, an event or an incident, large or small, can touch a nerve and instigate a controversy of national proportions.

Like all organizations, CBC/Radio-Canada is not immune to the #MeToo movement, and the number of allegations of inappropriate behaviour involving staff may increase.

Other types of ethical issues, such as conflicts of interest, may also have an impact on our reputation.

There is a risk that negative perceptions of CBC/Radio-Canada may undermine credibility and stakeholder support

Continue to promote a safe, respectful and inclusive workplace through the Code of Conduct and mandatory training on ethics, the prevention of bullying and harassment, and unconscious bias. Work with stakeholder groups to identify initiatives to continuously improve the workplace and address complaints in an objective and timely way.

The Office of the Values and Ethics Commissioner will develop and put in place an online biannual declaration process for situations that might lead to a conflict of interest (real or perceived) for directors, senior directors, executive directors, vice presidents and, in certain sensitive areas, managers and confidential employees.

Use a comprehensive issue management system that:

  • Monitors and tracks the environment;
  • Identifies potential issues and the stakeholder groups they could affect;
  • Provides proactive and reactive messaging and guidance to senior leaders, line managers and communications staff across the system.

Ensure a strong crisis management response that stresses transparency and decisive action is implemented to address critical issues.


Clear and transparent action plans to deal with critical issues will improve credibility and stakeholder support.


There is a risk that the project may not achieve expected operational efficiencies, meet construction timelines, meet technical requirements or stay within budget, leading to increased costs and impacting the attainment of strategic objectives.

Develop and maintain constructive business relationships with partners.

Ensure tight project management: proactively monitor, assess and control risks, and establish realistic schedules and budgets, contingency plans, and adequate planning in order to minimize changes during execution.

Enhance consultation and coordination with staff to help them prepare for the move to the
new building.

Obtain change management expertise on an as-needed basis, to support the Corporation’s major change efforts.


Continue to monitor the project planning, in particular for the technical infrastructure and the reimagining of work processes and work spaces.


Despite heightened awareness and attention to cyber security, the number, cost and complexity of cyber incidents for all companies worldwide continue to grow. While CBC/Radio-Canada is investing in managing information security risks, evolving cyber threats have the potential to significantly disrupt operations (e.g. capacity to be on air; availability of our digital services) and/or damage our brand.

There is a risk that personal information is disclosed or used without clear consent.

Monitor and assess network security, cloud technologies and system vulnerabilities.
Implement enhanced information security rules, guidelines and procedures, and increase staff awareness and training on information security topics and protection of personal information.

Review and augment, as necessary, the Crisis Management Response Plan for information security incidents.

Following the recent theft of a piece of computer equipment that contained personal financial information of current and former employees and outside contractors, we are reviewing our policies and procedures on information security and physical security to identify and implement measures to mitigate against future similar incidents.

Continue and refine identified strategies.



On December 19, 2017, the Minister announced the appointment of five new Directors. On April 3, 2018, the Minister announced the appointment of the President and CEO, the Chairman of the Board, and three new Directors. The President and CEO assumes her post in July 2018.

CBC/Radio-Canada is entering year four of Strategy 2020, launched in June 2014. The development of a strategic road map beyond 2020 is important considering the unprecedented disruption in the communications and media industries, the upcoming licence renewals, and the modernization of Canada’s cultural policies as we continue our transformation into the digital public space.

There is a risk that a high turnover of directors or change in leadership at the Senior Executive Team may negatively impact decision-making processes and the continuity and stability of Strategy 2020, and may delay the launch of the development of Strategy 2025.


Continue rigorous onboarding process for new directors or change in leadership.

Develop transition plan and overlap with current President and any change in leadership at the Senior Executive Team.

The high turnover may delay the launch of the development of Strategy 2025.