PMP + LSS A Powerful Combination
Joel Palmer had extensive process improvement and project management success in the automotive and transportation industries before he completed BPG’s PMP Exam Prep and LSSBB programs in 2019 and 2018. Since taking the courses, Joel:
- earned his PMP certification,
- began teaching project management at Cincinnati State and Technical College,
- began working as a project management consultant at New Oaks Consulting Group.
- Click here to read how Joel sees PMP and LSS being used to achieve strategic goals and improve processes.
PMP: Developing Strategy and Building Structure
Recently Joel’s been using PMP processes to help two organizations establish new product development workflows. The development cycle involves supply chain management, SCM, research and development, operations, and marketing. Both organizations had similar goals in establishing a development cycle: improved time to market:
- improved revenue, reduced costs,
- and improvement in meeting established product delivery schedules.
Joel sees the PMP process as providing a road map for how an organization will “get through” a project. As he leads these new development cycle projects, he is introducing risk management and issue logs, as well as communication plans, that will guide how the organizations complete projects going forward. Importantly, Joel is also documenting these practices so that the new product development process can be successful long after his consulting work is done.
Joel says two major challenges in these endeavors has been:
- Creating an effective communication plan for new Project Management processes to the leadership team and all stakeholders of a project.
- The greatest challenge: changing the culture of the company to adapt good Project Management practices.
LSS: Improving Processes
As the product development process is tested and implemented, Joel will be looking for opportunities to apply LSS to improve specific processes – and use the QI macros he was introduced to during the BPG training.
Here are some of things Joel will be doing to identify potential LSS projects:
- Perform a thorough lessons learned process at the end of every project to identify LSS opportunities.
- Identify LSS opportunities throughout the project duration.
Data: Essential to Success
Joel will review data as part of his process review. Joel’s experienced in identifying the data points that are critical to track for various projects and LSS initiatives. Many of these have been related to supply chain management; projects usually driven by cost and efficiencies. His efforts have resulted in improved turn around time and reduced shipping costs – the latter the result of identifying the optimal package size for shipping.*
Joel emphasizes the importance of gathering and using data to “find the truth.” He says “Think of a company as a human body. If you are regularly getting medical checkups and data is collected and monitored you can detect cancer – or other illnesses –early. The same is true for a business. If you are regularly gathering and assessing data, you can detect business issues sooner when the chance to intervene and correct are greatest.