Ops Notes: As 2020 Winds Down

The last eight months have been on a very steep learning curve, coming from the world of municipal politics to the nuclear sector has not felt like much of a challenge thanks to the great support of the OCNI team, and the outgoing and incoming OCNI Board.

At the OCNI AGM on November 26, 2020 I walked the OCNI Membership through staff’s ambitious plan for the fiscal year ahead. I am proud of what staff have committed to do in the next 11 months and the quick overview below is just the tip of the iceberg of the work we have ahead.

The OCNI team has worked hard over the past few months to ensure relevancy and expansion of the OCNI brand, and now that we have momentum, we aren’t stopping any time soon. The programs and service offerings we put together this year will not be once and done, they are long term with built in flexibility to adapt to the needs of the supply chain.

The current fiscal year (2020-2021) business plan aligns with our Mission, Vision, Values and our five strategic focus areas:

  • Connection – Create and maintain strong linkages among members and customers that lead to contracts for members
  • Capacity/Capability – Ensuring job ready applicants, and supply chain capacity is at levels that can ensure refurbishment and other large projects are successful
  • National + Global Reach – Research and present business development opportunities for OCNI member companies with a focus on non-refurbishment work throughout Canada and globally
  • Advocacy – Build and maintain support by the general public and all levels of government for nuclear industry and supply chain, and
  • Revenue + Growth. Though the business outlines what staff will be working on under each area I would like to emphasize that the areas are not independent but have synergy and overlap.


We have already started to create moments that strive towards strong linkages and connections. OCNI Staff will be working on:

  • Growing our partnerships with associations here in Canada and globally, to ensure we have access to the most up to date information and insights as they pertain to the Canadian nuclear supply chain.
  • We have rescoped our in-person supplier days to focus on a more personalized approach. These events about creating a dialogue between all tiers of the supply chain and the end user. After the success of the dragon’s den concept at the SNC supplier day we have expanded this out to CNL Industry Day on Dec 9 and also to the Bruce Power supplier day on January 15. Please add links to both events
  • Expanding our economic development work plans to NB, CNL and Durham region. Modelling these plans on the successful work in the tri-county area by Alison Fernandes we are expanding her role and her title to Manager, Stakeholder Relations (BP, CNL, NB).
  • Creating original content that highlights the collaborative work of the supply chain and the power producers through our digital marketing and sponsorship plan, member spotlights and more.


The key to the longevity of the Canadian supply chain is ensuring that we have the capacity and capability to succeed. Through the work of both our sector managers a focus will be on knowledge services. This will be done through:

  • The creation of participation opportunities in career fairs and sector spotlights here at home and abroad.
  • Actively working with the provincial governments on capacity and skills development initiatives.
  • Organize workshops/training on key supplier/utility issues. We have over 50 events in the works for 2021 on topics such as Leadership, Technology Innovations, Nuclear CyberSecurity, Marketing Management, Export Sales and so much more…
  • Through the Advanced Technology and Process Group establish short term and long-term framework for innovation in the industry and supply chain.
  • Promote skilled trades apprenticeships (GF’s and PMT’s) at supplier locations.

Global + Pan-Canadian Outreach

We hosted a session recently on cultural awareness and employee mobility, during that session a comment made by one of the panelists resonates with this focus area. Moving from one province to another can sometimes be as stressful as moving to a new country. OCNI doesn’t mind that stress, the O in OCNI stands for Organization not Ontario and we are laying down the work for supply chain conversations and growth in NB and Saskatchewan and looking all the way west to BC in regard to medical isotopes. Additionally,

We have ambitious goals here with two virtual trade missions already in the works for January with Romania and Wales. A review of all our MOU’s, the creation of two national supplier directories one on decommissioning and another on medical isotopes, a successful completion of the NB Forum and one in the works for Saskatchewan.

  • Through the creation of the Advanced Technical Processes Council, OCNI has reached out to IAEA, NEI and other groups to establish OCNI as a thought leader in the international nuclear supply chain.

Advocacy: Our Voice is YOUR Voice

OCNI engages in a number of advocacy efforts in conjunction with our supply chain members, and other respected voices in the industry to ensure that we have a strong, cohesive voice in the development of clear nuclear policy and also in critical business/economic development here in Canada.

OCNI contributes to existing programs through CNA, ONA and also leads through our direct advocacy and education programs with all levels of elected officials. Throughout the year ahead we will:

  • Create opportunities with government officials that showcase achievements and positive impacts of the supply chain through supplier engagement and showcase events.
  • Continue to actively participate in coordinated advocacy campaigns with ONA, CNA and other organizations to expand reach.
  • Revisit and update the Scope of Work OCNI has with GPA to reflect a national approach.

Revenue and Growth

Though each of the previous pillars have a revenue and expense components to them the final area is a team focus on building our offerings, through

  • Create and implement a member retention and growth strategy
  • Build new high value events beyond the traditional mix
  • Expand virtual portfolio of members only event
  • Build members only resources throughout the year that are a value add to ensure retention. If you are a current member in good standing you can access a number of these resources through the secure Member Portal.
  • Build out a member’s affinity program.

In summary, we have an ambitious year ahead and with the implementation of contract consolidations, cost cutting measures and some new revenue streams including partnerships and a wee bit of assistance from the government to get through the pandemic. Learn more about what we did and where we are going in our Year in Review and our most up to date Annual Report.