A government social sector agency wanted to improve access to specialist services and funding across a region.
Hedgehog Consulting was engaged to lead a regional business improvement initiative. The agency wanted to improve engagement and access to specialist services.
A Lean Six Sigma methodology was used to setup and run an improvement and process re-engineering change project. The project followed the Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve, and Control (DMAIC) improvement methodology used by Six Sigma.
During the early phases multiple analysis techniques including ishakawa, customer voice, and kippling analysis were used to define the issues and develop change hypothesis to target efforts. Customer voice capture and analysis enabled us to identify the issues that mattered most for clients. The capture process included meetings and presentations to stakeholder groups and a review of stakeholder engagement reporting.
Building on this analysis the project developed business change (current state, change state) and business impact (opportunity, impact) blue prints, and a targeted change/benefit plan. During the first phase of the project we developed current state business process, customer journey maps, and high-level SIPOC maps, for the processes being targeted. From these and analysis of the workflow data in the system we identified significant variation, waste (effort, materials and cost) and developed value stream maps that identified process bottlenecks.
We worked with a project team over a six-month period to identify and improve process bottle necks, management controls, and reduce non-value added activity.
Following initial analysis the project targeted specific services and funding. Over a six month period the project:
- Undertook 'kaizen blitz' initiatives to implement new process, business structure, performance metrics and engagement protocols
- Improved regional management reporting about service demand and through-put
- Cleaned-up management information and data
- Mapped existing processes and addressed process inconsistencies and variation
- Trialed new service and funding processes, and communication protocols across multiple offices
- Reduced overall wait-lists for service referrals across the region
- Improved regional process consistency for service referrals, requests, and funding decisions
- Completely removed unnecessary paperwork, and related storage costs
The project was transitioned to business and the new processes were adopted. New business functions were continued. The improvement work also influenced the service design for a wider organisational review.