Dublin Villager

School maintenance

Study offers suggestions to increase efficiency

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Lean Six Sigma will be used to increase efficiency in Dublin City School's maintenance department.

The Dublin Board of Education last week got the results of a study conducted by Ohio State University Fisher School of Business students about how to decrease the time it takes to fix things throughout the district.

Annette Morud, district director of business affairs told board members students have been working with members of the maintenance department since January.

"Some tickets are 46 days from request to closing the ticket," she said. "They're looking at all those and trying to become more efficient."

Lean Six Sigma, often used in the business world to maximize efficiency, is an effort brought to the district by Superintendent Todd Hoadley.

"We've been really trying to introduce the terms of operational excellence," Hoadley said.

The students working with the maintenance department used the problem solving methodology that seeks to define, measure, analyze, improve and control to improve workflow.

In the study, OSU students found that maintenance workers lost time running back and forth to find the proper tools and parts to fix problems.

"We learned that each school is built a little differently so some parts are hard to find," said Scioto High School graduate the OSU student Caitlin Hwang.

Solutions suggested by the OSU students included tool carts that would keep maintenance workers from running around to find parts and tools, and establishing in-school cabinets that would hold tools and parts for each school.

"I was very impressed with the work done by the students," Hoadley said.

"This is the direction we are moving as a district on the operational side of our organization," he said.

"Many of the efficiency concepts used by the private sector are very applicable to our work in Dublin City Schools."

Fisher Business School students have also been working to maximize efficiency in the district's hiring process and technology repair ticket system.

Elsewhere in the district Lean Six Sigma is being integrated.

Five central office administrators spent a week in late April at the LeanOhio Boot Camp that teaches how to use Lean Six Sigma methods and tools in the public sector.

"This is practical training aimed at generating results," a news release from the district said. "Participants will be able to use their knowledge and skills immediately to make government simpler, faster, better and less costly."

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