Implementing Adaptive Phased Management 2023-27

The NWMO will:

  • Implement a human resources strategy, and ensure the information technology security and platforms required for the organization and regulatory decision-making process are available; and
  • Begin planning, design and tendering for construction of the Centre of Expertise.

With a project of such complexity and generational scope, we have always anticipated the need to adapt over the course of the process, while also keeping an eye on the long view.

Site selection is a critical milestone, marking the beginning of a new series of activities. After the site is selected, there will be increased activity in the local and regional area. It will also mark the beginning of a multi-phase organizational transformation for the NWMO.

As we look to expand our team, the NWMO will seek to build an equitable, diverse and inclusive workforce, maximize job opportunities in the siting area – the municipality and surrounding region, including First Nation and Métis communities – and develop capacity in communities through investments in training and education.

With site selection drawing closer, we are preparing to move our operations to be based in the location selected for the repository. We are also making plans to increase resources within the region, ensure we have the technology in place to support Canada’s plan, and secure land for our facilities, including the Centre of Expertise.

Internally, we are preparing for this increased activity by putting in place the resources needed to undertake continued site characterization, engineering designs, regulatory submissions, and construction and operation of the deep geological repository.

In the period from 2023 to 2027, the NWMO will also:

  • Assess resource requirements to advance and support continued site characterization, environmental assessments, engineering designs and safety case development for the selected siting area in support of the licensing application;
  • Continue to build a strong local presence in potential siting areas and provide local contracting opportunities for the project;
  • Work with communities to understand the housing and infrastructure needs that will be required to support the transition of the NWMO workforce to the selected site;
  • Invest in building up the skills and capacity of youth and community members in the municipalities and First Nation and Métis communities engaged in the site selection process, to help them secure jobs related to the plan; and
  • Continue to strengthen our corporate culture through appropriate organizational behaviours, standards and tools, including the use of technology platforms. This includes striving for excellence in project management, achieving meaningful partnerships, embracing diversity and inclusion, committing to Reconciliation, and aligning with Indigenous Knowledge and practices in all our work.

The operational readiness plan

To ensure we are ready to move into the next phase of the project, the NWMO is developing an operational readiness plan that will include:
  • Developing and implementing the systems, processes and tools required for the next phase of the project, including care and control of the project site in the selected community; and
  • Ensuring the NWMO has the project, contract management, and commercial processes and tools to execute large, complex projects and multi-year contracts.
To align with the planning priorities, the NWMO is developing organizational capabilities and competencies for the regulatory decision-making process and preparing for construction. This includes further developing the processes, systems and tools that will be required to implement Canada’s plan on time and on budget, including our management system, commercial strategy, business and information technology infrastructure, and information management systems.

The NWMO will also be delivering more complex aspects of the project in the next phase of work, with increased risk for impacts to the cost and schedule. Our ability to manage and report on these projects and contracts will require the right resources to be in place by the time we select a site, so that we can transition effectively into the next phase of work.

In the period from 2023 to 2027, the NWMO will also:

  • Continue the transformation of our management system to be consistent with the requirements of CSA N286-12, Management System Requirements for Nuclear Facilities, as it applies to our activities;
  • Continue to use information technology tools and technology to automate processes, support strategic initiatives, and digitize information, content and records;
  • Use artificial intelligence, business intelligence and data analytics to drive operational efficiencies and aid in critical decision-making;
  • Develop a commercial strategy for the labour, goods and services necessary for the next phase of work;
  • Implement the Project Management Information System to support the execution and monitoring of the NWMO’s projects; and
  • Apply the project management and commercial strategy governance to our work.