Helping Sandwell to embrace LEAN thinking
In 2013, Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council’s business change unit approached us to help them communicate the unique benefits of LEAN across their organisation. We needed to simultaneously effect LEAN cultural change whilst creating staff and management buy in. Our unique e-learning and e-technology platforms, our extensive experience of Continuing Professional Development (CPD), and our psychology-inspired approach, enabled us to rise to the challenge. We developed a LEAN-thinking CPD online course within a few months – engendering practice-led change across the council and winning hearts and minds in the process.
What is LEAN?
LEAN is a set of tools and ways of thinking based on ideas developed by Japan’s manufacturing industry. At its core, it aims to maximise customer value and reduce costs through minimising waste. Ultimately, it aims to provide the best possible council services to its residents. Our critical role in this process was to harness this change by getting individuals to do things differently, guiding and encouraging them to make step-by-step changes using our bespoke online CPD programme.
Real change: saving money; making a difference
We adapted Campus Online – our state-of-the-art WordPress CMS – to the needs of Sandwell’s management and staff. To encourage buy in, we created a feedback forum so that each and every member of staff could discuss the LEAN approach and provide feedback directly to Sandwell’s LEAN team. Our online CPD platform encourages staff to challenge and change their own practice, whilst enabling them to learn about the essential LEAN principles in a fun and engaging way. It’s been a resounding success. It has saved Sandwell money and made a real difference to working practices – delivering real and sustainable change to the very heart of Sandwell’s practice.