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Justification Toolkit


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General Tips

Most agencies are operating under tight budget restrictions, which mean you will need to strongly convey the value and benefits of attending PSMW 2017 Winnipeg. Here are some things to consider:

  • Be specific. Focus on what you will bring back to your agency or organization as a return on investment.
  • Spread the word. Offer to prepare and deliver a short presentation and Q&A to your colleagues when you return. That way others will get the benefits of your attendance, too.
  • Share the training agenda and speaker handouts with your colleagues. As an attendee, you have unlimited access to materials posted by speakers.
  • Stress the time and money savings. If you are working to obtain or maintain an accounting designation, remind your supervisor that with PSMW, you can earn up to 15 CPE hours in one place. Attending PSMW 2017 is less expensive than registering for separate conferences, and it means less time away from the office.
  • Be prepared. Show your supervisor a plan that indicates who will cover for you while you are away.
  • Check for lower rates. Be sure to check the registration page to see if you qualify for any discounts (early bird registration can save up to $25!)


Calculate ROI for Attendance

As a manager, how do you propose any allocation of resources in your organization? You need to understand two components to make decisions:

  • Expense (the "investment")
  • Return on Investment

This article provides some easy-to-use tools to help you calculate the investment and identify your return.

Understanding Your Training Expenses

Event expenses are affected by a number of factors. Use the following Expenses Worksheet to develop a cost estimate for attending PSMW 2017.

Expenses Worksheet

Expense Guideline Cost
Training Registration Fee Save up to $25 if you register by May 1st. Attendees can choose to attend one day (instead of two) for additional savings! $
Flight PSMW 2017 is located in scenic Winnipeg conveniently accessible by Air Canada and WestJet airlines. $


The Radisson Hotel Downtown Winnipeg
288 Portage Avenue
Winnipeg, MB R3C 0B8

Special rate of $149 (plus taxes) for PSMW delegates. Complimentary wireless Internet access. Complimentary area shuttle that operates within 10 km of the hotel.
Mileage Reimbursement Make an effort to share a taxi with other PSMW attendees. Taxi from the airport to the hotel is approx. $20. The Radisson operates complimentary airport transportation from/to the airport.  Reserve your booking in advance by calling the hotel's concierge desk at 204-956-0410 with your contact and flight information. It is necessary to pre-book this service. $
Parking Reimbursement Self-parking for Radisson guests $15 per day; Valet parking for Radisson guests $20 per day including in-and-out privileges.

Venue parking for non-guests is max. $12 per day (6am to 6pm) and max. $8 per evening (6pm to 6am) with no in-and-out privileges.
Meals Full breakfast and lunch are included on Monday and Tuesday of PSMW. $0.00
TOTAL $xx.xx

Understanding the Benefits

Let's face it: Many benefits from training attendance are hard to quantify. Experts agree that the top benefit is networking value. Where else can you find so many industry and government contacts facing the same issues as your organization? Are there solutions you're not aware of? Although networking is undoubtedly the most important aspect of training, it is also the toughest value to quantify.

When you propose training for approvals and funding, don't talk about how much you want to go. Focus on what you will specifically bring back to the organization as payback for the investment.

Some specific details you'll need to identify:

  • Session content. What sessions have particular relevance to your organization's work? Identify new tools, technologies and processes you can learn about from the sessions.
  • Vendor contacts. Will the workshop exhibitors showcase tools you use or are evaluating for potential future use? Will you be able to compare competing tools? (Yes! PSMW 2017 is proud to have exhibitors on location that will keep you abreast of the latest product offerings.)
  • Best practices. Will there be training sessions in areas that will immediately benefit your team? (Yes! PSMW 2017's program includes learning sessions that will deal with growth and productivity with respect to: collaboration and the strategic role of finance; cultivating and sustaining creativity; community partnerships; finance and procurement; and, your socio-economic outlook... among others.)
  • Training. Will there be workshops designed to teach attendees a special skill and/or help your team overcome current or future challenges? (Yes! In addition to multiple plenary presentations and a unique panel discussion, PSMW 2017 has two concurrent sessions on the both the first and second days… in particular a 2-part workshop on defining what makes leaders and staff flexible, adaptable and creative on day 1 that is similarly followed on day 2 by creatively fostering, maintaining and growing that adaptability… your key to successful coaching!)

Quantifying the Benefits

To be most effective, you need to clearly articulate the connection between your organization's knowledge requirements and the training program. DO NOT assume that your manager will automatically make those distinctions.

The following Benefits Worksheet will help you focus on the benefits. Use whatever makes sense for your particular organization and training, and omit the rest.

Benefits Worksheet

Your Organization's Benefits Specific Needs and the Training Sessions that Meet the Need
Networking Benefits This training will allow [specific team members] to network with other professionals and suppliers in the industry. We will be able to take the pulse of what is happening for tools, technologies and processes, and hear new ideas.
Teambuilding (if sending a big part of your group) This training will help build our team, providing a forum for team members to discuss tools, technologies and processes and how we might apply them in our organization to improve our information products, workflow and processes.
Current Tools  
Future Tools Exploration  
Current Technologies  
Future Technologies Exploration  
Current Processes  
Future Processes Exploration  
Suppliers With Tools & Technologies You Are Exploring e.g. BMO Financial Group


Letter to Training Supervisor

This sample letter can be used to explain the benefits of attending the 30th Annual Public Sector Management Workshop, "Collaboration • Growth • Renewal", including how it will make you a better employee and help advance your organization.

This general template will get you started while allowing you to customize it to you and your organization's particular needs.

Sample Letter


Dear [Supervisor's name,]

I would like to attend the Financial Management Institute's Public Sector Management Workshop (PSMW 2017) "Collaboration • Growth • Renewal," [INSERT Monday, May 29th; Tuesday, May 30th; OR May 29th and May 30th, 2017] in Winnipeg. This training event will enable me to attend a number of education sessions that are directly applicable to my work and will allow me to network with colleagues from other provincial ministries, the federal government, and local municipalities. Many of the presentations are tailored to [INSERT your primary function here, for example: accounting, auditing, finance, program management, etc.] and give information on how to provide analysis, advice, and strategic direction. I am seeking funding for the training event including the registration fee and travel expenses. A detailed cost breakdown is included below.

After reviewing the training agenda, I have identified a number of education sessions that will allow me to gain knowledge and understanding about how we can improve our financial processes. The presentations are facilitated by both industry experts and colleagues who have faced similar challenges. I chose each of these presentations because they are directly related to an issue we are dealing with in the organization. Getting the information in a seminar format will greatly reduce the time and costs that [your organization's name] would normally incur in researching the topics.

[INSERT the sessions which most apply to your responsibilities. Choose from:


I will have the opportunity to hear highly-respected leaders in the public sector, including Bill Matthews, Comptroller General of Canada; Susanne Robertson, CFO of the Canadian Museum of Human Rights; Mark Rodgers, President & CEO of Habitat for Humanity Canada; Larisa Wydra, Director, Corporate Services Division, Manitoba Infrastructure; David Coopsammy, Strategic Initiatives Manager, Manitoba Infrastructure; Tyler Markowsky, City Economist of the City of Winnipeg; and, Sharon O'Leary, Certified Integral Master Coach™.

<Include if you hold a professional accounting designation>

As a holder of a professional [INSERT CPA, CA, CMA, or CGA] designation, PSMW 2017 is an eligible learning event for the purposes of fulfilling the mandatory CPD requirement for the calendar year. This requirement is designed to sustain professional competence and enhance the commitment of lifelong learning. PSMW will contribute [INSERT # of PD hours based on days of attendance. Day 1 contributes 7½ hours and Day 2 contributes hours per day; up to 15 hours for the full learning event] hours to my mandatory CPD requirement.

<The numbers in brackets below will need to be adjusted to reflect the current pricing. The travel costs vary as well and should be changed to reflect your costs.>

Travel and training costs are [$xx.xx], I am saving our [name of branch] $50 by registering online before the early registration deadline of May 1st, 2017.
<You will need to insert your travel cost numbers in here.>
Here is the breakdown of workshop costs:
Roundtrip Airfare: [$xx.xx]
Transportation: [$xx.xx]
Hotel: [$xx.xx] (special delegate fee of $149 per night)
Meals: [$xx.xx] (full breakfast and lunch included on both days)
Registration Fee: [$xx.xx]

Total costs associated with attending this workshop are: [$xx.xx]

The opportunity for me to develop better contacts and gain knowledge in specific areas of [your area of expertise] makes my attendance at the Financial Management Institute's PSMW 2015 "Growth and Productivity - The Way Forward" a wise investment, which will yield rich dividends for [name of your organization.] Financial Management Institute's PSMW 2017 " Collaboration • Growth • Renewal " a wise investment, which will yield rich dividends for [name of your organization.] Research has shown that similar learning events with this caliber of speakers are easily $1,500.00 per day, so PSMW 2017 is excellent value for the money and will be a great learning opportunity to add to my personal development plan (PDP.)

Thank you in advance for considering this learning request.



[Your name here]