Implementing Lean Principles throughout the Government of Canada

Written by , OPSI Staff on 24 July 2014

The successful application of these approaches presents an alternative to the view that there has to be a trade-off between the quality of public services and the cost of providing them. These efforts are contributing to a more affordable government, while departments are still delivering their core mandates and pursuing an active policy agenda.

Moreover, the Canadian government is developing an approach to increase awareness of departmental business process improvement initiatives (including Lean). In June 2014, an e-platform was created which has assembled over 50 initiatives from 39 departments and agencies. Six of these used a Lean methodology, including the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency’s investment in training for employees to engage in a Lean Six Sigma methodology, with the purpose of  improving internal business processes and ensuring continuous development. As explained in their video, the process engaged employees at all levels to identify opportunities for saving time and costs, to increase efficiency and to meet clients’ needs in a timely manner.

Lean principles are also being used to simplify administrative processes. Several departments and agencies will collaboratively launch “Lean pilots” to identify some of the most problematic internal controls and regulations throughout the Government of Canada. The findings, lessons learned and actions being undertaken to avoid these will be incorporated into an overall Lean approach. Measurement tools will be established to monitor and report on the number of policies and requirements reduced, the steps simplified, and the reduction in time to meet the requirements. By 2015, a sustained effort at approaching internal rules from an end-user’s perspective will be driving a change in culture across the public service.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *