Title Lean approach in VET
Project Number 2012-1-SE1-LEO05-11661
Project Type Transfer of Innovation
Marketing Text The aim of LeanVET was to investigate the usefulness of the lean theories and methodologies for Vocational Education and Training (VET) organizations. The project partners represents VET organizations in the Netherlands, Finland, Denmark, the United Kingdom and Sweden. With a lean-approach, each partner/country focused at different areas that occur in a VET system: (1) accreditation of prior learning, (2) counseling guidance, (3) pilot lean courses, (4) company services and co-operation, (5) combining different levels in the education system. The gathered experiences is written down in a final report which gives recommendations to VET organizations how to work with lean.To down load the report visit our webpage: www.leanvet.eu
We have seen the intrinsic potential of Lean and we recommend VET organizations to work with Lean implementation from the co-workers and the management perspective when it comes to: Lean tools, a common and visual system of working with Lean and Culture.
Lean tools: The management has of course the over-all responsibility for getting a Lean implementation started and has to work actively to keep the implementation evolving. When the co-workers are given the right pre-conditions they can start the Lean implementation by testing Lean tools. For instance the co-workers can start working with the structured method for improvements, Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA).
A common and visual system of working with Lean: The improvements that are made by co-workers must be put in a holistic context, based on the demands and needs of the student and the purpose of the organization. How we work to meet the student needs must be analyzed, structured and visualized in a common system.
Lean culture: We have realized that the culture in an organization is important to be able to implement Lean successfully. A Lean culture is when everyone in the organization stands behind and believes that everything always can be developed to something little better, problems will be seen as possibilities rather than problems, it is our system and not individuals that causes problems and finally ask “Why” instead of “who” when you work with solving a problem.
There are a few more aspects we would like to highlight:
Keep a balance between your daily work and your improvement work. Also keep a moderate pace in every improvement work. You will work Lean for a long time, so do not stress. It is better to get it done. You always have a purpose of why your organization exists. The organization is there for someone. Always keep the purpose of your organization top of mind when you are working Lean. That means you keep the outward-inward perspective rather that only looking at your internal organization. Always base your identified problem on facts. Collect data that is possible to measure after you have gone through with an improvement work. Hiring an external consultant is valuable in the start-up process. The consultant is really valuable when it comes to embolden you to start trying working with Lean.
The Lean Academy, under the guidance of a Leanmentor, was the red thread across the project and the aim was to learn about Lean and to investigate the usefulness of the lean theories and methodologies for VET organizations.
Lean Academy started in November 2012 and the majority of partner organizations were beginners in lean theories and methodologies. The programme of Lean Academy engaged partners to start to test some thinking and methods according to the assignment lean mentor handed out. Transnational meetings have been held in Gothenburg, Groningen, Copenhagen, Tampere and Brighton. At each meeting the Leanmentor has held a lecture and an assignment have been handed out to work with between meetings. Between meetings, each partner has had follow-up Skype meetings with Lean mentor and project manager. The purpose of these meetings was to ensure progress of the lean learning and the developing of an actionplan and for partners to get the opportunity to ask questions to Lean mentor.
At transnational meetings partners updated each other by presenting progress and experiences in their work package with following discussions. Questions were sent out to partners before the meeting and partners responded to them in time for the meeting. The purpose of this was for partners to contribute with valuable information which contributed to each work packages progression.
Partners have involved their own organizations including management and staff. Involved target groups differs according to workpackage theme; i.e learners, other VET organisations, municipalities, public authorities and employers.