Plan and lead continuous improvement
You will demonstrate the management and leadership skills and knowledge required to plan and lead continuous improvement systems and processes.
This is to be carried out as a presentation and a report.
Using the simulated business information provided and in response to a scenario, you will prepare and deliver a presentation to the management team on proposed continuous improvement strategies to be deployed in work teams; proposed systems to communicate to stakeholders; proposed approaches to meeting sustainability requirements; proposed approaches to coaching continuous improvement; and strategies for knowledge management. You will then submit a summary report. You will also prepare a monitoring strategy to monitor progress on the implementation of the continuous improvement system, a communication strategy, and several relevant procedures.
Note: You will use the planning and portfolio documentation you develop in Assessment Task 1 for completing Assessment Task 2.
Part A: Prepare and deliver a presentation
You are required to research, plan and deliver a 10-15 minute presentation to a peer group of managers on proposed continuous improvement (CI) systems and processes for Australian Hardware organisation.
1. Review the following scenario thoroughly and answer the questions below.
You are a continuous improvement consultant. Australian Hardware has contracted you to analyse the business in order to propose an overall approach to continuous process improvement, including using a general methodology such as Lean or Six Sigma. You are required to carry out an analysis of the company from the simulated case study.
The approach will be used across the business, including application to areas such as:
a) sustainability across the organisation and how well they are positioned for the future.
b) revenue per customer interaction
c) operational costs
d) customer service satisfaction across product areas such as timber, plumbing and electrical, garden products, hardware, tools and homewares
e) delivery lead times for customers.
You will need to consider the appropriateness and applicability of different continuous improvement methodologies in order to find the best fit for Australian Hardware. Part of this process is to research the different applications of continuous improvement methods and to find which one would best suit this organisation.
In your overall approach, you will need to develop several supporting strategies and procedures.
You intend to trial your proposed quality systems and processes at the Wollongong store.
You will need to gather feedback from the management team on your proposed continuous improvement approach. In accordance with organisational practice, you will need to prepare a summary report incorporating feedback and suggestions for amendments and refinements.
2. Review Australian Hardware documentation, including strategic plans and operational plans. Note what the organisation does, how it does it, what its goals and objectives are, and who its stakeholders and customers are.
3. Research or review continuous improvement methodologies and tools and identify strategies for improving quality and performance in targeted areas. You will need to select and prepare for discussion in your presentation:
a. a continuous improvement methodology, such as TQM, Lean and Six Sigma to apply to the organisation
b. problem/opportunity identification and decision-making tools, such as value stream mapping, root cause analysis and brainstorming.
c. strategies for including and encouraging participation by the right individuals and teams
d. strategies for building ownership and a work culture that is conducive to improving quality, reducing waste and high performance.
4. Analyse the impact of your proposed introduction of continuous improvement measures on the organisation as an integrated whole. In particular consider, for discussion in your presentation, the impact on:
a. communications to various stakeholders
b. knowledge management and information flow, including information technology relevant to document storage and sharing
c. sustainability and sustainability objectives
d. performance management, including setting goals and KPIs, monitoring, training and coaching, and rewards and recognition
e. legislative compliance and how this relates to the organisation.
5. Arrange a time and location to deliver a presentation to the management team with the results of your findings in steps 2–4.
6. Deliver the presentation to the management team. Ensure you:
a. Seek input for improvements or additions to your approach to be incorporated into your summary report and portfolio documents. Ask questions and use active listening techniques.
b. Deliver your presentation in accordance with the deliverables and quality specifications outlined below.
Part B: Prepare a summary report
1. Summarise the contents of your presentation in a one- to two-page written report, including recommended changes or additions. Ensure you:
a. use an appropriate style and tone for business reporting
b. use headings, paragraphs and full sentences (except in illustrations or bulleted lists).
2. Submit your summary report in accordance with the deliverables and quality specifications outlined below.
Part C: Portfolio of work
1. Develop a communications strategy for implementing your proposed continuous improvement initiatives that includes:
a. two to three communications objectives
b. at least two audiences, for example, senior management, work teams, or individual employees
c. at least two methods of communication or media.
2. Develop a short (less than one page) procedure for informing teams of the outcomes of continuous improvement activities.
3. Develop a monitoring strategy for an area of team performance identified in the scenario. Include:
a. targets (aligned with or consistent with organisational goals)
b. standards (compliant with relevant legislation, policies and procedures)
d. responsibilities for recording and reporting
f. technology and systems used for capture, storage and reporting of performance information.
4. Develop a short (less than one page) procedure for managers and special continuous improvement teams to run continuous improvement sessions; for example, if poor performance is observed through monitoring systems.
Your procedure should:
a. outline how to run a team session to capture opportunities for improvement and share required knowledge
b. include at least one measure to ensure adherence to legislative requirements such as health and safety, privacy, or anti-discrimination.