CI Academy celebrates first anniversary
18 May 2023
Celebrating the first anniversary of its Continuous Improvement (CI) Academy, Ingeus launches its Agents of Change series – shining the spotlight on some of the academy’s successful participants. Here, Collette Westerman, CI Academy Development Manager, reflects on just how successful – and busy – the past year has been, as well as what it means to Ingeus and its employees.
Developing Ingeus’s Continuous Improvement (CI) Academy from scratch has been a huge undertaking for Collette Westerman, CI Academy Development Manager, and her Ingeus colleagues. But witnessing light-bulb moments along the way and the impact they produce, have made it hugely worthwhile.
The Academy is open to over 2,700 employees at Ingeus, providing learning opportunities to maximise each individual’s role in enabling better lives. Delivered in partnership with Lean Competency System, an accreditation partner of Cardiff University, the CI team has created resources to support colleagues in developing Lean Six Sigma tools and techniques.
Collette, who graduated with a first-class degree in chartered management last summer, reflects, “It’s been a whirlwind of a year, but we’ve achieved everything we set out to achieve, and more.
“Watching the CI capability grow from just seven accredited staff to a community of 127 Change Agents has been amazing. And seeing those light-bulb moments when people really get continuous improvement and what it means for their team in a real-life context is so rewarding.”
The team has successfully delivered two cohorts of green and yellow belt Lean Six Sigma training – levels are split into white, yellow or green belts – and will complete the third in June. Participants become ‘Change Agents’ once they have completed their learning, equipped to then pass on their new-found knowledge to their teams.
Having delivered 130 hours of accredited training and follow up sessions, Collette easily highlights examples of realisation.
She says, “Our training with our engagement team colleagues helped them see the bigger picture. They realised the difference it would make if they standardised their recruitment process and, using the tools we gave them, they’re already seeing positive results and exceeding their targets.
“It’s important to make individuals recognise the part they play in continuously improving their team’s performance. Whether the discussion is around employability, justice, youth, health or one of our central support services – it really doesn’t matter. All our divisions are striving for customer service excellence.”
The next 12 months will be as busy as the last for Collette. Determined to drive CI further, her diary’s already bursting with a CI graduation ceremony, summer fitness camps and a knowledge bank launch.
“Our next year is about evaluation and building on our success. We have received so much positive feedback from participants. It’s encouraging to see everyone engaging in CI and we’re very grateful to all the Change Agents who’ve come through the Academy.”
Find out more about how you can progress your career with Ingeus: Ingeus Career Opportunities.