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October 2014

IACS Lean Story

Internal Audit and Consulting Services (IACS) began its Lean ‘journey’ in November 2011. To date, IACS has facilitated six projects and provided support for many others. The audit staff has also incorporated many of the Lean principles into their daily work. Reviewing departmental processes with a Lean perspective has improved IACS’s ability to meet its mission to independently and objectively determine whether internal controls are in place and functioning effectively. The IACS journey began after Barbara Jena, Director of IACS, attended a two-day training course facilitated by Al Ryan, now the Director of Lean Initiatives. She came away from this training with a project idea to map areas where all University cash is received. Thanks to the contributions of team members from the Bursar’s Office, HDRBS, Treasury Services, and University Advancement, the project led to a comprehensive enterprise map that identified over 100 locations that receive some form of payment. In addition, this cross-divisional team reviewed existing processes and identified ideas for making improvements in the cash handling processes for four locations that receive 88% of all University receipts. These changes led to improved efficiency and $18,000 in cost reductions, new revenue generation, and cost avoidance.

Future teams facilitated by IACS would use the information developed during the initial project to examine other departments’ cash handling processes. The next three of these projects focused on operations within HDRBS, culminating in a Kaizen event that resulted in a standardized cash handling process for all dining halls. These additional three projects achieved a total of $114,000 in cost reduction and cost avoidance.

IACS continues today to offer Lean teams support through leadership from Jeff Pidcock, the Senior Department Lean Leader for IACS, Environmental Safety and Risk Management, the Miami Police Department (featured in the August 2014 newsletter), and the Budget Office. These areas have improved small and large processes under Jeff’s leadership, ranging from improved accident reporting to a much improved position control and position budgeting system that has impacted the entire University. Some current projects for these offices include: Right-of-Way Request Process Improvement, Incident Reporting, and Internal Audit Workpaper Review process improvement.

Agile Training Workshop

Doug Troy, Director of Miami’s Agile Launchpad program, facilitated an Agile Training workshop on September 25th for the Senior Lean Leader Certification program. This four hour course included a combination of lecture and practical exercises and allowed attendees the opportunity to understand and apply Agile concepts.

Agile is a term for a set of values, principles, and practices that have been shown to improve the efficiency, productivity, and quality of software development and delivery. The Agile approach is a team approach where everyone on the team is accountable for the results. While Agile was originally used in software development, today it is an alternative method for managing projects in virtually every area of business. Agile concepts incorporate value, collaboration, speed, flexibility, simplicity and teamwork into the entire process. Because the customer is engaged throughout the process, the team is able to ensure the right solution is being implemented. Agile practices also facilitate team planning, monitoring, and reflection throughout the entire process by continuous communication.

Participants in this half-day workshop used an amusement park production simulation to put the Agile practices to use. Team members were tasked with designing and building a theme park utilizing Agile methodology. Much thanks to Doug Troy for providing this valuable training opportunity. Additional training opportunities in Agile techniques are expected to be offered in the future.

Certification News

In September, Kerri Jackson (Bursar) and Scott Rein (Physical Facilities) completed all requirements for the Lean certification program and are now Senior Lean Leaders. Congratulations Kerri and Scott!