What can Lean Six Sigma do for the federal government?

The process improvement methodology of Lean Six Sigma originated in the manufacturing industry as a way to keep quality standards high and costs low. It has since emerged as a powerful tool to mitigate waste and inefficiency while decreasing expenditures across a wide range of businesses and industry settings.

The concept of doing more with less is especially appealing to the federal government, given the continuing economic turmoil and the ever-rising national deficit. According to estimates cited by Villanova University, applying Lean Six Sigma across the entire government could save a total of $5 trillion over a decade-long period, or $500 billion a year.

Lean government has more to offer than just financial benefits, however. Engaging in streamlining can also significantly reduce red tape, expedite processes and free up government workers' time, allowing them to attend to tasks more quickly and be more productive. This could help decrease the unemployment rate, encourage economic growth, salvage Social Security and more.

Some state and local governments have already integrated Lean Six Sigma, including Alabama's Baldwin County, which is training workers to identify and eliminate waste within coastal government processes. 

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