Internal Process Review and Improvements

Process Improvement is a formalized, structured, collaborative approach to define and analyze a process (within a predetermined scope) that is used to identify an improved future state of a process. Future state outcomes could be enhanced productivity or quality, increased customer satisfaction, and improved morale. It is advised to have an objective external facilitator lead this effort through the multiple phases of work to achieve the best results. The recommended methodology consists of six phases, which are fully described below. Three of these sessions are held as half-day “events or workshops,” where participants (subject matter experts, stakeholders, customers, or constituents of the process) map, analyze and envision an improved future state together. These events have many added benefits over a small project team, such as establishing a shared understanding of the process, generating buy-in, and improving the likelihood of successful adoption of the future state.

Time Commitment

  • AD of Continuous Improvement: 40 hours
    • 20 hours of active work with leadership, facilitating discussions, mapping, and development of the action plan with subject matter experts, and stakeholders
    • 20 hours of “behind the scenes” activity to document processes, discussions, analysis, action plans, creating artifacts for departmental reference
  • CCI member participant: 40 hours
  • Internal Documenter: 40 hours
  • Project Manager and Process Owners: 20 hours
  • Subject Matter Experts: 12-16 hours
  • Executive Sponsor/Leadership: 2-4 hours


At the end of the week the process owner and project manager will have the tools necessary to work towards implementing the desired future state.  In addition, the following documents will be provided as artifacts to the project: project charter, current state map, analysis of the current state summary, future state map, and action plan.

Project Phases

Phase 1 – Initiate Project

1-2 hours

This work will be done prior to the CI office being engaged. Identify and prioritize processes for improvement projects include through review of key metrics such as: departments KPIs, satisfaction surveys, culture or climate surveys, user complaints, known compliance issues, etc. The CI office will need to verify that the process is appropriate for the proposed timeframe.

Deliverable: Identified process for improvement

Phase 2 – Define Organizational Context

1-2 hours

Once a process has been selected, the CI office will work with management to understand the organization and process environment, define project success, expectations, team member roles, timelines, in-scope/out of scope, and objectives for the work – resulting in a complete project charter.

Deliverable: Project Charter

Phase 3 – Define the Current State

4 hours

Visualizing the process is a group event where the process is mapped and documented through a highly visual and participatory activity. Demonstrating what work is done, how it is done, who does the work, and how frequently the process is done.

Deliverable: Current State Map

Phase 4 – Analyze the Current State

4 hours

Analysis of the current state is a group event to explore why the work is done (necessary business function, technical limitation, regulatory or legal requirement, or other reason), identify pain points, waste, and highlight initial opportunities for improvement.

Deliverable: Analysis of Current State Summary

Phase 5 – Define Future State Improved Process

4 hours

Envisioning and mapping the future state is another highly visual group event that collaboratively designs and maps the desired future state of the process. This future state process is informed by the information learned during the current state and analysis stages.

Deliverable: Future State Map

Phase 6 – Create Recommended Action Plan

4 hours

The project manager, process owner, and other key stakeholders develop a detailed action plan to guide prioritization of change efforts and detailed implementation planning.

Deliverable: Recommended Action Plan

Next Steps

A more detailed scope of work including project deliverables with timelines will be developed for approval prior to execution of project.