Idaho Transportation Department Drives in The Innovation Fast Lane

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Dave O’Connell, Gene Hamacher, and Gregg Lynde (L-R above) of TechHelp’s Operational Excellence (OE) Team have been honored to work with the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) on the organization’s Innovation and Leadership Transformation.

In 2014, ITD was spurred by a vision to operate in a more business-like manner and motivated by funding shortfalls to launch a strategy to engage employees to find solutions to everyday problems. The centerpiece of this innovation strategy is an employee-driven effort. ITD called on TechHelp’s OE Team to arm ITD personnel with the tools and techniques of Operational Excellence and to help teams apply the tools to actual improvement projects.

ITD employees not only innovate, but they also have a good time doing it and reporting on it.

Rather than rely on the brainpower of a select group of leadership-level people, ITD harnesses the creativity of all employees statewide. Employees at every level of the organization are encouraged to submit ideas for time and money savings and making processes more efficient. But this is not just an old-fashioned suggestion box. Teams representing a diverse blend of employee levels, job functions, and geographic areas come together to implement the best ideas to generate measurable impact. Working together to implement ideas and solve problems helps ITD team members develop powerful innovation and leadership skills.

Francine McGrew, above, says Innovation is looking up at ITD.

The results of ITD’s most recent innovation efforts were on display at the organization’s 2017 Leadership Summit/Rapid Innovation Event on October 25 at Boise State University. The entire event was dedicated to featuring the results of 13 teams that worked together to create efficiencies and savings by implementing great ideas and tackling gnarly problems. Though ALL 13 teams did incredible work, the winning team for 2017 worked to improve ITD’s “Onboarding” process. The team worked on creating a more efficient, effective, and meaningful process for “onboarding” new employees in an effort to drive significant savings related to employee turnover, productivity, safety, and morale.

Read more about ITD’s innovation efforts and the many awards the organization has earned.

Read about ITD’s Rapid Innovation Event at Boise State.