The role of continuous improvement software as a means to share information across organizational boundaries and between levels in a company is one of its most valuable - yet underrated - functions. We've written quite often about the need to share information openly and often in an improvement culture, believing that this is a fundamental practice in any successful organization. In today's post, let's see how some Lean professionals describe the benefit of this function of improvement software.
We're an architecture and engineering firm. We have sites across the country in 7 different offices. One thing we struggled with before KaiNexus was that if someone had a good idea, then we started to deviate from our standard work. So one office would be doing something really smart that the rest of us should be using, but traditionally we didn't know that until we started to try to work together.
Having KaiNexus to spread those ideas out has really helped us have more standard work so that we do need to collaborate as offices, we're able to do that much more efficiently.
- Jake Snyder | LCI Austin Community of Practice Chair
A common problem organizations attempting to spread an improvement culture find themselves up against is that improvement occurs in silos. While individuals making improvements to their daily work are likely to share them with other people in their immediate vicinity, word is unlikely to get out into the wider scope of the organization. The result of this is that each silo improves gradually on its own, with each team reinventing the wheel one after another (or never at all).
Continuous improvement software breaks down the barriers that stymie the spread of improvement. When you find a change to make in your work, you're able to share that with anyone. In this way, the improvements made by each person have a significantly greater impact as others across the organization adopt the changes and build off the new standard for future improvements.
Align Improvement at Every Level
Before we had KaiNexus to share out information about KPIs, we'd have quality meetings on the senior level, slide presentations - that information stayed on the executive level so the front lines and even middle management didn't have access to that information.
We have front line staff who can go to look at those big projects to see how they can incorporate some of those ideas into their own department plan, on a front line level.
- Kristin Bentz | Lean Transformation Specialist, Lee Health
When 80% of the improvement potential in any organization resides in the front lines, you certainly don't want to exclude those people from the goals, projects, and improvements you're working on. Many organizations fall into the trap of making improvement initiatives accessible only to senior-level management, and never including the rest of the organization.
KaiNexus, on the other hand, gives everyone in the organization visibility into improvement so that they can contribute ideas to solve your most pressing problems and reach strategic goals. You hire smart, creative, talented people, right? Align their potential and your needs with technology that enables everyone to improve their own work.
Store and Share Knowledge
Before KaiNexus, we relied heavily on project report outs and PowerPoint slide decks in which we listed what happened in a project. Those went into a repository, and we couldn't easily mine them and understand what was going on where to see what happened where.
KaiNexus definitely gives us a searchable, easy way to connect things and even to go back to understand what didn't work so we can approach problems in a different way in the future.
- Chris Luckett | Network Manager, Process Excellence, Kettering Health Network
One of the most common ways people manage improvement before KaiNexus is with spreadsheets, slides, and Word documents filed in a repository somewhere. Once the projects wrap up, everyone moves on - frequently neglecting to adopt or spread the opportunities for improvements they discovered during the projects. There's no way to research what other people have worked on, or to learn from people who have solved problems similar to yours in the past.
With KaiNexus, companies find that their staff is able to access that wealth of historical knowledge to solve problems immediately, join existing teams already experimenting with solutions to common problems, and accelerate progress toward KPIs by building off organizational knowledge. Improvements are never filed away to be forgotten; they continuously show up in search results, filtered lists, and suggested improvements.