Report makes five recommendations in wake of July labour force survey error

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OTTAWA – A report into an error in the July jobs report by Statistics Canada has made five recommendations to prevent future mistakes, including improved governance, testing protocols and diagnostics.

The report released Thursday also called for improved documentation that can be reviewed when system changes are made and better communication between staff.

Statistics Canada was forced to correct its July employment report after a mistake the agency chalked up to human error resulted in the number of full-time job losses being overstated.

The agency revised the results to show 42,000 jobs were added, compared with its initial report that just 200 were gained in July.

The report found the primary factor for the error was a lack of understanding by team members about how changes made to a sub-system would affect the processing system as a whole.

Chief statistician Wayne Smith said the agency would immediately implement the recommendations in the report.

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