At the second Continuous Improvement (CI) Network meeting in York on 6 March the Food Standards Agency (FSA) gave a presentation about their CI journey and culture including how CI initiatives were progressed, reported and the key documents used to ensure transparency and consistency. A great example of early networking was that FSA, who run CI training events for their staff, invited Land Registry colleagues to take part as they had not had the opportunity to participate in CI training. Caroline Terry from the FSA arranged for three Land Registry colleagues, Tiffany Ireland, Maxine Moses and Wendy Carroll, to attend the training in April.
Tiffany Ireland said,
Our thanks to Caroline for arranging for us to join an ‘Introduction to CI’ session. We are Team Leaders in Land Registry Operations. Our teams process applications for registration, for the most part from professional customers, such as solicitors and mortgage lenders. Like all civil service departments we are looking for ways to improve our processes and customer service and to find efficiencies.
The session was enjoyable and informative. There was no attempt to blind us with science, but instead Fiona, our trainer, talked through CI in a very straightforward way, using real examples to make the theory relevant. We had not come across the 5 Ds approach to problem solving before and we all thought it was a really useful and sensible way of working through a problem.
We thoroughly enjoyed the practical exercise -there were sticklebricks – what’s not to like?! It worked really well with the number of people we had on the session and demonstrated how to assess where you are now, think about where you want to be, and then make changes (but not all at once!) to see if improvements can be made. This exercise also emphasised the importance of measuring your performance at the start, the baseline, to ensure you can demonstrate whether, and where, improvements have been made.
All-in-all we found it a really worthwhile day; not just for the CI information, but also for the opportunity to meet some civil service colleagues and get some insight into a different department .
If you would like to be involved in the Yorkshire and Humber Continuous Improvement Network contact Steve Benson. There is also a lively CI network in the North East and you can contact Alison Roach to find out more.