Monthly Archives

November 2013

Continuous Improvement, Faculty, Six Sigma

Faculty Profile Pages Project

Churchill plans quote Opus College of Business has been updating the faculty profile pages and the faculty directory for the OCB website. This nearly completed update was accomplished through the efforts of a Continuous Improvement (CI) group that was formed in the fall of 2012. We all know how long-term projects can get buried under the avalanche of daily emails, phone calls and other activities. We stayed on track through regular meetings and updates in SharePoint.

The CI team used three of the tools that we learned during our Six Sigma training – discovery interviews, a fishbone diagram and process mapping. We then used Microsoft Project to create a timeline to stay on task for a project that will have extended over almost two years before completion.  

The first thing we did was to identify and interview the major stakeholders – faculty, students, administrators and members of the media. Using post-it notes we wrote down the issues that came forward in these interviews. These were grouped in categories. Using these categories we created a fishbone diagram which really looks like a fishbone. The spine of the project was updating the look and content of the profile pages. On the spine we listed the post-it note categories and the bones were all of the issues. We color-coded these issues by the ease in which they could be addressed. Doing this gave us a clear picture of where the problems were and the actions/approvals that were necessary to complete the tasks. At the same time we created a process map which allowed us to look at how profile pages are created for new faculty and how their information is kept current. Again, we were able to see where the bottlenecks were and how they could be fixed.

The profile page team worked through the fall of 2012 and the spring of 2013. A few tasks remain to be completed as we get ready to transition to TerminalFour (T4), the university’s new content management system. As a team, we held weekly meetings from September, 2012 through January, 2013 and then moved to once every three weeks through July, 2013. These  were 15 minute meetings  conducted by conference call between campuses and took the form of “stand-up” meetings. The idea is that if everyone stands during a meeting everyone is likely to stay on task and the meeting can be finished quickly. As the time nears for our transition to T4, the team will be pulled together again to be certain everything is ready to go forward.

The current profile pages were given a first update which included adding a narrative bio for each faculty member and a new photo. The final updates will happen after OCB has converted to a new content management system for our website. Watch for the updated pages, we anticipate the new look will appear near the end of February, 2014!

Members of the 2020 Faculty Profile Pages Project team: Suzanne Krzmarzick, Lisa Burke, Jess Durant, Sandy Beach, Joyce Wilking, Cindy Lorah, Jean Gabler and Bob Gaffney.

Posted by Suzanne Krzmarzick
SusanneKz

2020 Team members, Continuous Improvement

Susie Eckstein: 2020 Team Member

“One of the things I enjoyed the most as a graduate student was the constant generation of new ideas, often sparked in class, about how to make meaningful changes to the work I was doing. Now that I am done with my MBA, being part of the 2020 Vision project training helped me to keep thinking of things to be improved in my daily work and on a bigger scale with college-wide operations. I have a whole notepad page of ideas that came up just during training, alone. Kennedy quoteIt’s easy to get into the ‘this is how it has always been done’ mindset especially after doing certain things for a while. The 2020 Vision project and the work the team is doing is a reminder to keep thinking about how we can all make UST even better.”