Students walking to class

November 2015

Lean Initiatives News

Miami employees will again have a chance to attend the university-wide LEAN Fair on January 12, 2016. Last year nearly 700 representatives from around the university participated in the fair learning about Miami's approach to continuous improvement, Lean concepts, and Lean tools. This year's theme will be Creativity and Innovation. This multi-divisional event will provide attendees the opportunity to participate in a variety of activities and interactive courses sponsored by Finance and Business Services, Enrollment Management and Student Success, University Advancement, Information Technology Services, and Academic Affairs. Employees will be able to take away valuable ideas and practices to use in their daily work and personal lives. Look for additional information about this year's Winter Term LEAN Fair in the December newsletter.

IT Equipment Disposal Phase II

This project was initiated as a follow-up to the original LEAN disposal project that targeted the need for securing contracts for disposal of equipment for IT Services. Phase II was conceived to take the process a step further and address lessons learned and to apply the process to the campus as a whole.
The project deliverables were as follows:

  • Disposes of equipment in "timely" manner
  • Demonstrates the University’s judicious use of taxpayer funds
  • Maximizes expense and revenue recovery
  • Provides a method of disposal/recycle that is green
  • Ensures a full security lifecycle of the equipment
  • Migrates the Simple Service Request for “Asset Disposal” to the TeamDynamix reporting system
  • Unifies three different processes used by the University for IT equipment disposal

Core members for this project were: Donna Amrhein, Peter Macklin, Stan Brown, David Hampton, and team leader, Brian Henebry.
Upon completion of the project, the team achieved an 83% reduction in the steps required to recycle computer equipment which results in a 48% reduction in time and a projected savings of $13,950 annually to the University. Additionally, the team was able to secure a cross-department agreement that any additional money recovered from the recycling efforts above operational expenses will be channeled to the University’s Student Tech Fee program.


Beginning in summer 2014, the Fleetcom Lean team led by Yvette Kline worked in subgroups to focus on commuting, vehicle sharing and work schedule ideas. These ideas were pre-screened by Miami's Sustainability Committee to yield a significant reduction in our transportation-related, carbon footprint. Trial assessments, including the "Wizard of Oz" clicker survey taken at last January's Lean Fair, led the team to recommend the use of Rideshare Ohio's online system to form car or vanpools. This was in part because the program provides reimbursement for emergency rides home. The Sustainability Committee picked up on the team's recommendation and featured RideShare Ohio information in the set of bookmarks distributed through campus mail to all employees in August 2015. PFD's sustainability office spread the word at this year's Benefits & Wellness Fair, and will conclude the project by helping people sign up online at the January 2016 Winter Lean fair.

In addition to the above recommendations, Fleetcom project lessons learned resulted in better informed questions that were part of this fall's Transportation Survey, conducted by graduate students working on updating the University’s carbon footprint.