Lean at UNH: Latest Yellow Belt Class Discusses the Value of Lean

April 24, 2018

by UNH IT Staff

Lean at UNH Yellow Belt Class - March 2018

Lean at UNH is about improving processes to better serve the University community, and to inspire and facilitate employee innovation on how best to add value while stretching UNH dollars. Lean is fostered and curated by the UNH IT Project Management Office (PMO), who have developed the Lean Pathways program to educate UNH personnel on the value and use of Lean.

The Lean Pathways program consists of four courses: Introduction to Lean (Awareness Training); Yellow Belt Certification Training (Application of Lean methodology); Green Belt Certification Training (Lean Facilitator Training); and Lean for Leaders. Since 2015, the PMO trained and certified 750 employees across USNH; 462 at UNH.

Lean Yellow belt courses are held five times a year. The Yellow Belt course held in March 2018 involved four departmental projects: UNH HR evaluating Extending Verbal Offer; UNH Financial Aid/Business Services focusing on Outside Aid; UNH Housing streamlining Summer Conferences; and USNH Procurement assessing the Bid Success process. This particular session included two UNH Graduate Students as Fresh Eyes. UNH Signals: IT News engaged with this training session to speak with participants about Lean’s value to the University.

Dan Walsh is a UNH Graduate Student who attended Lean Yellow Belt training in March and provided fresh eyes for the Outside Aid project.

“The Lean Program is really supportive of helping you with your progress,” Walsh said. “It will take any project you throw at it, personal or professional, and help you streamline your processes.”

Rebecca Wintringer works for UNH Housing and is working on the Summer Conference initiative. Prior to training, she wasn’t aware of Lean or its beneficial methodologies.

“Here at UNH this is my first experience with Lean,” Wintringer said. “I think it’s a really cool process and a really cool way to dive into the processes and problems at hand that has proven really valuable for our department and team."

UNH Human Resources is currently engaged in a project targeted towards extending verbal offers to prospective employees. Carrie Grube works for HR and is involved in the development.

“Lean is an interesting learning process,” Grube said. “You come into the class with an idea of what you want and what you don’t want, and the longer you’re in the class what you thought you wanted is actually different that than the outcome, in a good way.”

Dan McLeod has his Lean Green Belt and provides the facilitator role during the current and future state mapping phases of each Lean project. He is currently pursuing his Lean Black Belt certification - the highest achievable level – with an eye towards graduation in June. McLeod facilitated the Summer Conference project for the UNH Housing team. 

“Continual improvement and development really speak to me,” McLeod said. “Lean has helped me gain further problem-solving techniques and better ways to streamline my personal and professional operations.”

For more information and training opportunities for lean, go to https://www.unh.edu/lean


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