Now it’s the turn for the government to benefit from applying these practices. Washington Governor, Jay Inslee, recently chose two CEO’s to run the departments of Social and Health Services and Employment Security
One of the CEO’s, Dale Peinecke, has been working for an aerospace supplier for the last 16 years. He said in an interview that the key reason they had chosen him was to bring in lean manufacturing techniques into government
Lean government is a technique that allows identifying the most efficient way to provide government services. Government agencies have a lot of administrative and operational processes which can benefit from identifying the features that create value and translate them into uninterrupted movement and therefore efficiency. To make this uninterrupted flow of the processes it’s necessary to identify the activities that don’t add value to the citizens and consequently get rid of them. One perfect example of an unnecessary task in government is the redundancy of approval cycles in budget related processes. Although it is necessary to implement adequate controls to have a good accountability and traceability of government funds, it is also important to optimize and reduce additional steps in some of these processes. Other techniques that are applied in lean government are visual aids and controls that provide fast information, improving decision making.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has promoted the use of lean techniques in government agencies which help to increase the transparency and improve performance in an express time frame
It sounds as a rigorous and thoughtful approach to introduce lean manufacturing techniques to government agencies, but in reality government agencies are subject to political influences which may not be subject to optimization through the application of stylized techniques.