Continuous improvement using Lean principles creates a better experience for students, faculty, staff, and other customers. It also engages the people who are doing the work in improving the work, resulting in more time spent on interesting work, more even workloads, less fire-fighting, and less stress. In addition, it creates value for the organization in the domains of financial, operational delivery, quality, and experience and engagement.
Lean is also about building a culture, one that respects all employees and enables them to pursue opportunities to improve their work and share ideas for continuous improvement. It is a systematic, intentional model for creating and sustaining an environment where continuous improvement is the norm.
Benefits of Lean
A Lean approach to continuous improvement provides us with a concrete method to examine work processes. The tools we use are tested and the cross-functional teams often bring new perspectives to the table.
Lean thinking can provide improved value for the customer by:
- Improving the quality of work resulting from processes
- Reducing errors or defects in work processes
- Reducing costs
- Improving flow of a process
- Simplifying complex processes
- Reducing lead time
- Improving employee experience and engagement