Lean Budgeting Whitepaper #2 by Andrew Kleine

Monday, November 19, 2018

This is the second installment of my series about Lean Budgeting. In the first post, I wrote about using A3 problem solving techniques to develop new strategies for achieving citywide outcomes. In this post, I want to take a wider-angle view of Lean Budgeting, looking at it from a Value Stream Mapping perspective.

In public budgeting, government agencies should be thinking about how to 1) align resources with organizational goals and 2) make the services they deliver more cost-effective. Lean is usually associated with cost-effectiveness, through business process improvement. To most people, Lean is about eliminating waste: reducing the number of handoffs in an approval chain, better organizing supplies, streamlining the flow of work, etc.
Using Lean only for specific process problems misses out on much of what Lean has to offer. Lean gives us leadership and strategy tools to envision a better future, take on the biggest challenges we face, and engage employees and residents in positive change. These tools are needed by cities to see beyond the symptoms of problems and get to the root causes.

OPS Lean Budgeting Paper #2

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