Tender Process for Resident Matching Services Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

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1. Why is the AFMC putting this service contract out for tender?

The AFMC is funded through the faculties of medicine and therefore through public funds. As such, the AFMC is required to comply with federal procurement laws, which are designed to ensure open competition and fairness in the expenditure of public funds (specifically, the Canadian Free Trade Agreement and the Canadian-European Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement).

2. Why now?

This tender process is two years overdue. In this time, the AFMC has been completing due diligence regarding the necessity of a tender process and, subsequently, preparing to conduct a fair, transparent and equitable process for everyone involved. This work, combined with the arrival of a new President and CEO in July of 2023, the development of a new strategic plan, and regular conference and budget planning, has made for a very busy season. We are relieved to now have a clear path forward on this important topic.

3. Can the Canadian Resident Matching Service (CaRMS) bid on the new contract?

Absolutely, yes. The decision to undertake this tender process is a matter of law and is not an indication that the AFMC is dissatisfied with the services provided by CaRMS to date.

4. But CaRMS is a not-for-profit organization. Aren’t they exempt from the procurement laws?

No. The Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA) does provide for a possible exemption for not-for-profit organizations, but the courts have maintained a very narrow scope for its application, with an inherent bias toward open competition. CaRMS is not eligible for an exemption because it substantially relies on a for-profit organization, National Matching Services Inc., to provide its services to the AFMC.

5. Will the AFMC bid on the new contract, to bring match services firmly in-house?

No. The AFMC is looking for a strong and reputable service provider that will utilize the most up-to-date Roth-Peranson algorithm and provide informative data in a timely and confidential fashion.

6. Won’t this tender process simply drive costs up for learners and faculties?

Not necessarily. A core principle of open competition is to ensure that end-users get the best quality service for the lowest possible cost. The AFMC will seek the best value for learners throughout this process and will ensure that nearly half of the Tender Selection Committee is comprised of learners.

7. Who will craft the Request for Proposals (RFP)?

The RFP will be crafted collaboratively by a 19-member Tender Selection Committee, comprised of:

  • 9 learners:
    • Two from each of the four learner organizations Canadian Federation of Medical Students (CFMS), Fédération médicale étudiante du Québec (FMEQ), Resident Doctors of Canada (RDoC), Fédération des médecins résidents du Québec (FMRQ); and
    • One learner member from the AFMC Board of Directors;
  • 4 other AFMC Board of Directors members;
  • 6 faculty representatives from:
    • Undergraduate Medical Education (UGME)
    • Student Affairs (SA)
    • Post-graduate Medical Education (PGME)
    • Post-graduate Managers
    • Senior Administrators
    • Informatics

8. How will the AFMC ensure transparency in the process?

The AFMC has engaged a professional Fairness Monitor to ensure the presence of a consistent, objective voice at every step of the tender process.

9. What’s the timeline?

The AFMC expects to receive proposals this fall and select a provider by early 2025, with a goal to implement the new service contract in time for the 2027 resident match.

10. How do I learn more?

The AFMC will host four public Town Halls, designed for learners but open to all, to answer questions about the tender process and obtain further input for the path ahead. These will be webinar-style conversations, where participants can ask questions openly or anonymously using the Q&A function. The Town Halls will be recorded for reference and used by the Tender Selection Committee. 

Town Hall Schedule: 

Session 1: English Only 

  • Date: Monday, June 10, 2024  
  • Time: 6-7pm ET  
  • Location: Virtually via Zoom – Pre-register here 

  Session 2: English Only 

  • Date:  Tuesday, June 11, 2024  
  • Time: 6-7pm ET 
  • Location: Virtually via Zoom – Pre-register here  

 Session 3: English Only 

  • Date: Wednesday, June 12, 2024  
  • Time: 7-8pm ET  
  • Location: Virtually via Zoom – Pre-register here 

  Session 4:  French Only 

  • Date: Thursday, June 13, 2024  
  • Time: 6-7pm ET  
  • Location: Virtually via Zoom – Pre-register here  

There will also be a separate session on June 11 from 7 to 8 pm ET, specifically for university education leaders. Please register here if you are a university education leader. 

11. How do I follow along?

Primary communications regarding the tender process will be shared via email with learner groups, decanal groups, and members of AFMC Committees and Networks.
Other interested constituents can follow watch for general updates on the AFMC news page and/or contact communications@afmc.ca with specific questions.