Wednesday, 16 January 2013

What our customers say?

The new company policy at RG Wilbrey requiring all consultants to be trained to NVQ Level 5 as a minimum, was greeted with a degree of trepidation by some of the older members of staff, not least myself. It became clear from the outset my fears were entirely unfounded. The initial interview at Wolverhampton College gave me confidence that I was educated to a sufficient standard to undertake the course.

"I was attracted by the flexibility of the Wolverhampton College course and found it offered everything I was looking for and more! The staff at the College are extremely friendly, helpful, and courteous."

The course covered an incredible amount of ground in an amazingly short time. But the transitions from topic to topic were seamless, my tutor Ken Davies has an infectious enthusiasm for the subject and peppers his lectures with humorous and interesting anecdotes. Ken is a great instructor, very entertaining, knowledgeable, and willing to help. I found the material very applicable and got much more out of the tutorials than I expected. The support between tutorials was impressive with Ken being available to respond to emailed questions and phone calls very quickly and efficiently.

"Wolverhampton College has provided me with an excellent service tailored to my specific needs.  They have succeeded in delivering a training course which is specific and relevant to my particular needs. Ken Davies delivers in a way which allows attendees to interact, while learning skills and knowledge which can be applied to their individual roles."

Following the successful completion of the course, I am in a position to begin the process of becoming a chartered health and safety practitioner, hopefully leading to a senior management position.

I would have no hesitation in recommending Wolverhampton College as a training provider

Graham Nesbitt, RG Wilbrey


I have recently completed my City and Guilds (3654) qualification in Occupational Health and Safety at Wolverhampton College (Telford Campus). 

The course has provided me with the knowledge and skills to operate as a professional health and safety advisor within the Nuclear Sector. 

"The course is structured and delivered in a way that enabled me to transfer the academic knowledge and put them into practice within my business."

The qualification met the academic requirements for Graduate Membership (Grad IOSH) of the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH). 
I have also gained further experience and recently started my initial professional development (IPD), I have now progressed into a Chartered Safety Practitioner (CMIOSH). This status is a recognisable certification and now allows me to register on the Occupational Safety and Health Consultancy Register (OSHCR)
Finally, I would recommend Wolverhampton College for delivering any occupational health and safety training. The lecturer (Ken Davies) was a professional who had obviously spent time within industry. His expert guidance and knowledge has helped me achieve my current CMIOSH status.

David Turley, CMISOH MIET

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Health & Safety Courses at the Lean Academy, Wolverhampton

Meet our Health and Safety specialist - Ken Davis

Ken Davies is a chartered Safety and Health Practitioner, working within the Lean Academy, he has got 12 years experience in delivering many different kinds  health and Safety courses. 

His background prior to this was Health and Safety Management within the Aerospace Industry in and around the black country area. He is currently providing half day and one day introductory courses, covering a range of subject like Risk Assessment, IOSH working safely, manual Handling etc. 

If you are interested in more detailed courses like the level 3 NEBOSH National General Certificate or the National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) equivalent he can provide them too. The most popular of all the courses he runs at the moment is the Level 5 Diploma in Occupational Safety and Health Practice

Carl Beckett - Success Story

Mr Carl Beckett has been working with the Lean Academy throughout his working life obtaining qualifications as he goes. He started studying with us when he worked at Brammer uk as a warehouse operative back in 2006. 
He studied for his NVQ Level 2 in Distribution and Warehousing, he was promoted up through the ranks eventually becoming the Head of H&S for Arcelormittal in an international role, based in Wolverhampton.
During this period he has gained Level 2 IOSH Managing Safety, NVQ Level 3 in Distribution and Warehousing, Level 3 NEBOSH national general certificate in Health and Safety, Level 4 NVQ in Occupational Safety and Health and finally Level 5 Diploma in H&S all with the City of Wolverhampton College and the Lean Academy. Well done Carl it’s been a great journey.

IOSH Managing Safely - Customer Feedback

"I enjoyed the course, which was well presented and organised.
There was a wide variety of experience and knowledge within the group, to which Ken Davies responded in a very competent manner.
I particularly found the environmental section interesting as it is a topic that does not often come up in my line of work but is useful to know."
Matt Patterson

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Botany Bay - Service Improvement Project

By H.J. Cunliffe, USL Trading and Bygone Times Trading

As the Operations Manager of a 2 large retail outlets in Lancashire with a staff count of over 200 our business regards staff training and development a priority in order to stay ahead of our competition.
We recently enlisted the services of Wolverhampton College who have provided us with 2 retail improvement courses that are tailored to our specific needs. The 2 courses we are currently benefitting from are the Business Improvement Techniques Diploma programme and Customer Service NVQ.

Both of these courses have proved to be beneficial to both our business and our employees, we have seen significant improvement in our staff delivering good customer service since they have enrolled on the customer service course and our income and footfall has seen a marked improvement due to our staff being more aware of how to improve on the services we currently provide to our customers as well as introducing new ideas and income streams. The Business Improvement course which includes modules on workplace organisation, best working practicies and customer perception has proved to be most beneficial to our business as we can monitor our improvement through KPI's and KRA's which are included within the Business improvement initiative.

We will be looking to enrol more staff onto the courses in the near future in order to keep our standards of staff training high.

Thursday, 26 July 2012

The Key Lean Thinking Principles

By Eirian Lewis, TEAL Consulting Ltd
In ‘Lean Thinking’ (Womack and Jones, 1996) five Lean principles were put forward as a framework to be used by an organisation to implement Lean Thinking. A key initial premise is to recognise that only a small fraction of the total time and effort when producing a product or delivering a service actually adds value for the end customer. It is therefore critical to clearly define value for a specific product or service from the end customer’s perspective, so that all the non-value activities - or waste - can be targeted for removal step by step.
Womack and Jones’ five principles are:  
  1. Specify what creates value from the customers perspective Specify what creates value from the customers perspective
  2. Identify all steps across the whole value stream Identify all steps across the whole value stream
  3.  Make those actions that create value flow Make those actions that create value flow
  4. Only make what is pulled by the customer just-in-time Only make what is pulled by the customer just-in-time 
  5. Strive for perfection by continually removing successive layers of waste
Few services are provided by one function alone, so that waste removal has to be pursued throughout the whole ‘value stream’ – the entire set of activities across all the entities involved in jointly delivering the service. New relationships are required to eliminate waste and to effectively manage the value stream as a whole. Instead of managing the workload through successive departments, processes need to flow through all the value adding steps without interruption, using the toolbox of Lean techniques to successively remove the obstacles to flow to meet the demand from the end customer.
Removing wasted time and effort represents the biggest opportunity for performance improvement and enabling a greater focus on creating value.
Lean places greater emphasis on wasteful activity and in line with this, Toyota identified seven deadly wastes related to activity rather than design and implementation: transportation issues, inventory control issues, unnecessary movement of persons or equipment, time management, overproducing concerns, over-processing, and errors. Significant costs may be attached to each of these types of waste. As more and more layers of waste become visible and the process continues every action needs to add value for the end customer.

As Lean Thinking contends services must think strategically beyond its own boundaries. Because value streams flow across several departments and functions within an organisation, it needs to be organised around its key value streams. This includes enhancing the value delivered by internal service and back office operations … Finance, Human Resources, Legal and Compliance, Customer Service, Information Technology, Marketing, Facilities Management, etc.
Lean Thinking principles can be applied to any organisation in any sector. Although lean’s origins are largely from an automotive manufacturing environment, the principles and techniques are been transferred to many sectors, often with little adaptation. Despite scepticism by many that techniques and philosophies designed in a manufacturing context apply elsewhere, sectors such as distribution, housing, construction, healthcare, financial services, and other public sector services have all begun to implement Lean ideas in recent years.
Irrespective of the sector you work in, Lean is rooted in two key principles – "continuous improvement" and "respect for people". The "continuous improve-ment" principle embodies the tools and methods used to improve productivity and reduce costs. The "respect for people" principle embodies leadership behaviours and business practices that must be consistent with efforts to eliminate waste and create value for end-use customers. Customer Service, Information Technology, Marketing, Facilities Management, etc.

Friday, 13 July 2012

What is Lean Thinking?

Lean Thinking Origins
By Eirian Lewis, TEAL Consulting Ltd

The ideas behind what is now termed Lean Thinking can be linked to several sources, including management thinkers such as W. Edwards Deming. Of particular note are the ideas originally developed in Toyota’s post Second World War manufacturing operations – known as the Toyota Production System – under the guidance of its chief engineer, Taiichi Ohno. 
The term ‘lean’ was popularised in the seminal book ‘The Machine that Changed the World’ (Womack, Jones and Roos, 1990), which clearly illustrated – for the first time – the significant performance gap between the Japanese and western automotive industries. It described the key elements accounting for this superior performance as Lean production – ‘lean’ because Japanese business methods used less of everything – human effort, capital investment, facilities, inventories and time - in manufacturing, product development, parts supply and customer relations.

“All we are doing is looking at a time line from the moment the customer gives us an order to the point when we collect the cash. And we are reducing that time line by removing the non-value added waste.”
Taiichi Ohno, 
Toyota Production System 1978