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In late 2014, the HMS Office of Finance began a mission to gain knowledge about methodologies that would help their department become a more efficient and effective one. After some investigation, they began a partnership with UMass Memorial Health Care’s Center for Innovation and Transformational Change (CITC). HMS Leadership backed this initiative so in March of 2015, CITC began providing White and Yellow belt classes and support to HMS departments.

As we learned from the 2015 Engagement Survey Results for HMS, process improvement surfaced as the #1 item that would most improve our individual and collective ability to perform and contribute at a high level.  To that end, we are committed to providing training and resources related to continuous improvement, and for implementing Lean in particular - a process improvement methodology and philosophy aimed at improving the way value is created and delivered.

Since March of 2015, over one hundred and fifty of you have participated in workshops, developing key skills to apply Lean thinking and tools, including Value Stream Mapping, Work Process Mapping, or simply a new mindset of seeking opportunities for greater efficiency.  Training for Lean is provided by UMass Memorial Health Care's Center for Innovation and Transformational Change (CITC). Email hlctraining@hsph.harvard.edu with any questions.

HMS is not alone in its efforts to improve results through process improvements.  Check out the resources on the Administrative Innovation website, designed to spark creativity and innovation across the University.

Throughout FY17 you can expect to see more options for learning to apply Lean to concrete issues.  A Steering Committee, consisting of individuals who have embraced and successfully applied Lean principles, has been formed to ensure thoughtful action and communication. For a list of Steering Committee members and their contact information, please click here.

We are delighted to offer you these tools to foster positive impact, whether incremental or monumental.

Resources & Templates
Green Belt Participants
Frequently Asked Questions

Content and Upcoming Training Dates
*Please note: Lean trainings are intended for the Harvard Medical School (HMS) community, including HMS staff and faculty*

LEAN White Belt Training
Lean is a process improvement methodology and philosophy aimed at improving the way value is created and delivered for the customer and you. This one-day interactive course will help you develop the skills necessary to apply Lean process improvement, problem solving and tools in your work area. The history of Lean and an overview of the Lean tools will be presented. You will participate in interactive exercises and simulations to learn some basic tools that you can apply in your workforce immediately. Additionally, you will have an opportunity to network with other HMS employees and have the opportunity to train towards additional Lean certifications.
Pre-Work: Read article - Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Innovation Series, Going Lean in Health Care.
Tuesday, March 20th 2018 : 9:00am - 1:00pm, Countway Library, Ballard Room. For more information and to register in the Harvard Training Portal, click here.

LEAN Yellow Belt Training
All attendees should come prepared with an identified departmental and strategic project or “A3”. Project team enrollment is encouraged and supported during the 1 day training. Participants will learn how to apply the Lean problem solving method, A3, in their work and be capable of participating as a core team member in the identified project or others post training.
Pre-requisites: Lean White Belt Training completed
Pre-Work: None
Thursday, April 26th: 9:00am - 4:00pm, TMEC L-008. For more information and to register in the Harvard Training Portal, click here.

These labs are designed to help you gain or maintain momentum on your continuous improvement efforts by applying A3 Lean problem solving and expanding your acumen of Lean tools and process.  You are welcome to bring key team members or colleagues – whether they’ve been to Lean training or not – who are key to the success of your Lean effort.
Tuesday - December 5, 2017 : 12:00 - 2:00pm, TMEC, Room L-007. For more information and to register in the Harvard Training Portal, click here.

LEAN Implementing and Creating a Department Idea System- (Idea Board, Idea Cards, and Huddles) 
Frontline staff know all the details, problems and potential solutions to those problems. Idea System is a tool to utilize their knowledge, create a culture of continuous improvement, and empower the frontline staff by letting them work on their idea. A Department Idea Systems involves, an idea board, idea cards, idea meetings or huddles, and facilitation and coaching skills for facilitators and/or managers. This training will cover how to facilitate a huddle, how & when to move ideas on the idea board, use of a task list for employee ideas and include problem solving questions. All, who would like to take an active role in creating a department’s Idea System, are welcome.
Pre-Work: Each attendee is asked to arrive with an idea to improve something in their department. Criteria for ideas are low to no cost, involves the idea generator in implementation, can be implemented in 30 days and focused in their area.

LEAN Fundamentals
We recognize that the Lean white and yellow belt trainings are a time commitment and that not everyone may be able to attend, but many of you have expressed interest in learning more about Lean. With that in mind, we are pleased to offer three abbreviated Lean sessions on Jan. 9 at 10 a.m., 11 a.m. and noon (lunch is included in the noon session; attend any (or all!) of the one-hour sessions by registering for the full session). Each session will include an overview of a part of the Lean methodology and highlight some tools that your colleagues have found valuable.  






Our Mission

To create and nurture a diverse community of the best people committed to leadership in alleviating human suffering caused by disease.