Lean Six Sigma in the Public Sector - Huge Crisis & Great Opportunity
Lean Six Sigma in the Public Sector: How Our People can Create a True Step-Change in Efficiency & Effectiveness
Lean and Six Sigma was for so many years been associated with manufacturers like Toyota and Motorola; true pioneers in eliminating process waste, variability and inflexibility. It's now not so strange to think of insurance companies, hospitals, legal firms, financial services organisations and a number of public sector agencies who are realising the benefits of implementing Lean, Six Sigma and appropriate flexible performance improvement strategies.
In manufacturing, a ‘process’ is often relatively easy to understand. It will start with raw materials that pass through several transformations and the result is a product that is sold to a customer. Within the public sector the process may be less clear, but we all work within a process and it is no less difficult to understand. Like manufacturing, one can identify customers, suppliers, inputs and outputs as well as the steps within each process.
When it comes to the Public Sector, the big issue is still 'how do we achieve operational excellence without extensive headcount reduction?'
The pursuit of Operational Excellence is no longer purely associated with the private sector. By employing the right people and teams, it can be embraced across ALL parts of the public sector to achieve ever-demanding efficiency targets AND potentially eliminate the need for extensive human capital restructuring.
"This is a situation of huge crisis – and great opportunity – for the public sector. However, many of those trying to sell 'solutions' would strip out (not build) capacity, roll out tools (not change approaches), or harangue us about what Managers are doing wrong and try to convert us to 'the one true way' to improve services. We believe you need pragmatic, well-informed people who know the sector and will build your capacity to deliver the huge savings required"
Ben Taylor, Director of RedQuadrant
How do we do it?
Many consultants and industry experts have stressed that a sensible methodology is required; integrating lean six sigma coupled with a flexible change management programme will yield the most effective results. Utilising a flexible approach (not simply adopting prescriptive manufacturing methodologies) and when engaged by the right team members at an operational, not strategic level will drive significant sustainable savings.
Lean has been found to work in the public sector by focussing on reducing waste, improving flow, developing an understanding of the customer and developing a process view. The right people in your organisation will implement such improvement programmes which are focussed on achieving rapid and long-term sustainable results.
Ryan King from management consultancy, Lean Service Solutions explains;
"Lean thinking is capable of making huge improvements to service delivery from both the customer‟s and business‟ perspective. By deeply understanding customer needs and redesigning to deliver these often means large reductions of non-value added activities. Even in professional services such as creating legal documents, the customer waiting time can be vastly reduced if the end-to-end value stream is understood and designed to flow without disruption. Maximising the customer experience is the main differentiator between lean service and lean manufacturing."
We appreciate that it is more imperative than ever to select a recruitment partner with expertise, integrity and track-record to advise you and deliver the very best and most appropriate candidates for your existing or future jobs.
Opex Selection are true specialists in the field of recruiting ‘Improvement Champions’; Change Management professionals who are dedicated to achieving Operational Excellence (OpEx) in transforming organisations by leveraging a ‘tools-centred approach’ i.e. Lean, Six Sigma etc... or a ‘leadership / flexible problem solving approach’.
Our Consultants are members of the Institute of Recruitment Professionals and are dedicated to best practices and committed to the Industry’s Code of Ethics. We recruit many positions across the entire public sector; typical job titles we recruit include the following:
Transformation Manager / Director – Local Authorities, Government Agencies etc...
Service Improvement Manager - NHS
Head of Business Performance – Police
Business Performance Manager – Higher Education
Lean Facilitators / Six Sigma Black Belts – MOD / Defence, LAs, NHS, Education etc...
We are trusted by private and public sector organisations throughout the UK and globally to provide right-first-time, cost effective, market-leading solutions. Our specialist candidate talent base includes the brightest and most successful Improvement Champions at a range of levels from junior management to Board level. Our commitment to all clients is simple; ‘we deliver on our promises’. We provide expert and honest advice, a robust sourcing programme (utilising a mature existing talent network, all major job boards and our in house research function), a comprehensive selection process and impeccable after service.
This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our Public Services to take advantage of the future financial storm and create a transformation opportunity. Your people will take you there.
Should you have a present recruitment need, be struggling with your present recruitment campaign, have a future recruitment need or simply wish to be better informed of the market then please do not hesitate to contact us at no obligation.
Author: Dan Sculthorp