A presentation from the Washington State Auditor's Office, describing how the agency, working as a distributed team of auditors spread out across the state, adopted Lean principles and organized their work with Kanban boards, using Kerika
Our people are mobile and versatile and our programs have to be as well.
In late 2012 and early 2013, we started providing Lean workshops to local governments and our new State Auditor wanted to build a Lean culture in our agency.
Task tracking fit in well with the Lean concept of seeing your work. We want to manage what we’re doing and when it’s done. People our depending on us to finish our task before they can do their job.
Built around the very simple concept of what are you doing next, what are you doing now, and what have finished. You can see what’s on your plate.
Caught like wildfire – Basic boards, theme boards, project boards, an outstanding baker even made a board shaped like a cupcake.
It’s fun, everybody got into it as a way to see what each other were doing. There are only a couple left on walls, because, there was a big problem. They were stuck on the wall.
Imagine you’re Jessica and you work with four people in another building. The whole idea of the board was to track projects and one third of the team can’t see it.
Last fall, we started a pilot of the Kerika software. A number of teams took off and succeeded. Here’s a sample board from my team.
Here’s a way to look at major projects coming up. The color coding, deadlines, and assignments make really effective at a glance, while the information each card can hold blows the old sticky notes away.
If you have a system that works, this seems like another thing to do. We’ve had real challenges with this. We have Sharepoint, we have audit progress software, we have Outlook. Do I need to do Kerika too? And if key people don’t want to try it, the program suffers.
One of the things we’ve seen is that people already have a system that works. This deputy director has a whiteboard she’s used to track her projects and Kerika put it at her fingertips wherever she goes.
How a state agency became Lean, thanks to Kerika
Washington State Auditor’s Office
I n d e p e n d e n c e • R e s p e c t • I n t e g r i t y
Tracking team tasks online
Management Association Forum
May 21, 2014
Dan Genz, Performance Auditor
W a s h i n g t o n S t a t e A u d i t o r ’ s O f f i c e 2
Conduct more than 2,000 audits each year
About 350 employees
20 offices across Washington
Most auditors are out in the field
About the State Auditor’s Office
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Want to see
Work in teams
Why use task-tracking boards?
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Everybody built a board
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Team boards best for tracking projects
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What if the team is split
Four people Two people
Boards were non-starters in the field
because teams are rarely in the office
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Online boards solved the problem
Designed for teams and interactivity
Instant e-mail alerts
Easy to set up and modify
Multiple options available
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The board is always available online
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Cards are packed with potential
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Excellent at a glance tool
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What team members are saying
A useful tool
We’re just touching the surface of its capability.
Project status is live – no urgent status requests.
Put a task on a sticky and I’ll get it done.
When can my team use it?
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It can be hard to get everyone involved
Need a critical mass to succeed
Specialists/supervisors follow multiple boards
Must be online to use it
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A deputy director’s perspective
A great management tool
More information at my fingertips
Even though almost everyone who works for me
is in another building, I am in the loop