What is Lean?

Lean is a way to reduce waste and variation in our processes in order to increase value added work. The term was originally coined as “Lean Thinking” by James Womak and Paul Jones (1996/2003). Lean is really about the problem solving and innovation capabilities in organizations to increase efficiencies, eliminate waste and improve the value to our clients. Studies have shown that, in a typical organization, only a small fraction of total time and effort actually adds value for the end customer. Who are our clients? Our clients are the students that we serve and the employers and industries who hire them.

When Fleming takes a Lean Thinking approach we seek to look at how our processes and each step within our processes bring value to our clients and to eliminate processes that do not add value. This is done through 1) identifying value through the eyes of our customers; 2) mapping the process flow of value; 3) eliminating waste by creating flow or customer pull (what do they demand?), and then 4) perfecting through continuous improvement. The key tool for mapping the flow of work is the value stream mapping process and implementation is achieved through rapid improvement events called Kaizens. By adopting Lean principles, inefficient processes will be eliminated and more time will be spent on strengthening strategic work and supporting innovation in how Fleming delivers programs and services to its students. This approach leads to more satisfying work for everyone!

1. Lean Project Framework – workflow 

Lean Framework  (double-click on image for full version)

2. Templates

SIPOC – Template
SIPOC – Example

Project Charter – Template
Project Charter – Example

Implementation Plan – Template

Lean Steering Committee

Projects Showcase

Annual Reports

Lean Updates