OpusWorks by THE QUALITY GROUP

TQG Quarterly Newsletter

Keep up to date on developments at OpusWorks® with OpusWorks® Quarterly. In this issue, we celebrate the start of our 25th year of Process Improvement excellence, introduce our new mobile modules, and hear from customers about how OpusWorks® is helping them reach their goals.

Want to learn more? Contact us to hear from our team of experienced professionals.

 

OpusWorks® Celebrates a Milestone in Innovation

The Quality Group Celebrates 25 Years

This July marks the beginning of our 25th year since founding The Quality Group with a mission to enable elegant, technology-powered learning experiences with an ever present focus on Process Improvement. Back then, we were still producing our courses on CD-ROM! It wasn't until the Internet became a viable way to deliver content on a broad scale that we developed our revolutionary Learning Deployment Platform, OpusWorks®. Today, OpusWorks® is still transforming the way clients design, build, and deliver Process Improvement training. So, how do we want to celebrate our first quarter century of success? By sharing what we've learned with you. Get in touch with one of our dedicated team members today for a personalized demo of OpusWorks®. (We'll also be fine with cake.)

 

 

ThyssenKrupp's Quality Director Shares Pilot Program Insights

Pilot Team Appreciated the Interactive Quality and Blended Approach for Training

Rich Drinker, Quality Director of the ThyssenKrupp Elevator Corporation's east region recently led a small team through an OpusWorks® pilot program covering Value Stream Mapping. As the largest manufacturer of elevators in the Americas, with 15,000 employees in the US alone, ThyssenKrupp has plenty of first-hand experience with the challenges of building and maintaining quality literacy across an organization. So, what's it like leading a course with OpusWorks®? Rich says, “With a tool like this, I didn't have to be the expert. Instead, I became a facilitator, which was awesome.” He reports that the pilot team was enthusiastic about the interactive quality and blended format of the training. Students appreciated that the self-paced e-Learning modules could be completed ahead of class, allowing class time to focus on practical application and project execution.

 

OpusWorks® Customer Council Highlights Organizational Culture

Participants Share Insights from their Own Experience

The OpusWorks® Customer Council met in May to give training and deployment leaders from across our customer base a chance to share best practices and build relationships. The meeting focused on workplace culture in Process Improvement deployments. Participants shared insights from their own experience, noting the critical role of leadership involvement to engage, support, and empower front line employees.

Seasoned practitioners cautioned against forcing improvement initiatives from the top down, without taking the time to build motivation throughout the organization. Recent trends show many leaders shifting away from using words like Lean Six Sigma in their deployments, as these terms can carry negative associations with top down approaches of the past. Instead, many are turning to words like Business Excellence, Performance Excellence, or Process Improvement to capture the broad-based nature of successful deployments. Other members stressed Gemba Walks as a key way for leaders to visibly reinforce the front line’s important role in process improvement. A vital Gemba Walk practice is much more than "management by walking around." Leaders should be well versed in the Eight Wastes, and be prepared to take action on what they learn from the front line.

Council participants were encouraged by the atmosphere of collegiality at the May meeting. George Turner of WestRock reflects, "I found the meeting very refreshing. I got an opportunity to hear how others are leading their programs and share how I am leading mine. Felt good." The Council's next meeting is slated for October.

 

 

New Mobile Upgrades for Yellow Belt Curriculum, With More to Come

New Mobile-Ready e-Learning Modules this June

Dan Rice, COO and Product Development Team Lead at OpusWorks®, announced the release of new, mobile-ready versions of our e-Learning modules this June. The upgrade marks a major transition made possible by recent advances in HTML5 and mobile devices. Dan says, "Our learner experience is mission critical. . . so when we felt the technology had come to a point where we could deliver an even better user experience, it was time to get started. While other e-Learning modules on the market delivered PowerPoint page turners on the tablet level, we set our sights far higher. We set out to deliver fully interactive, media rich modules that would play on your desktop, tablet, and smartphone."

New features include:

  • Cross platform performance. Our new modules run on PC, Mac, Apple, Android, tablets and smart phones.
  • Bookmarking. Start modules on one device and pick up where you left off on another.
  • Scalability. Size e-Learning modules like any other window on your desktop. Make them as large or small as you desire.
  • Seek Bar. Navigate to any point in the module with ease. Pause and move ahead at your pace.
  • Improved Instructional Design. Helps learners focus to increase learning retention.

Read Dan's full letter HERE for more details, including when and where you can expect to see these upgrades.

 

 

Instructor Spotlight: Introducing Vickie Kamataris

OpusWorks'® Newest Team Member

OpusWorks® is proud to welcome Vickie Kamataris to our roster of world-class instructors. Effective mentorship and engagement in the classroom are critical to student success, and Vickie offers these skills in spades, along with a vibrant passion for health care and 20 years of experience in Process Improvement.

Vickie began her journey as a registered nurse in obstetrics, learning first-hand how process quality can impact patient outcomes. She says "people think that working in the OB department is always warm and fuzzy, but when bad things happen they're really bad, and unfortunately we had some bad outcomes, despite having great people. I was so frustrated that best practices took so long to actually become standard practices. So, when I heard about Six Sigma, I was determined to get my hands on this tool set.” Her determination eventually landed her a position as manager of Occupational Health and Safety at GE, training to receive her Black Belt. The rest, as they say, is history—Vickie's passion for process excellence has taken her around the world working with military veterans, and into countless industries to complete projects, including academia. In addition to her work as an instructor with OpusWorks®, Vickie teaches in the medical school at Columbia University in New York City, training the best of the best to become Green Belts through a program called SLIM (Systems, Leadership, Integration, and Management). She says, "To be able to have an impact and make a difference in health care through LSS is really cool." We agree, and we're thrilled to have her as part of the OpusWorks® team!