The program closed after just one year, but many lessons were learned
The State Department of Enterprise Services launched the G2G Lean Consulting Program in July 2017 to deliver customized consulting and training services to state and local government organizations. The program included 18 private sector consulting companies, competitively selected by DES, who served as subcontractors on interagency agreements (IAA) initiated by G2G Lean Consulting Program Director.
Though the G2G Lean Consulting Program offered an innovative and expedient way to connect state and local government leaders with private contractors, DES was not able to fully recover the costs of the program during its first year of operation. Cost recovery is a central tenet of all DES lines of business.
DES discontinued the G2G Lean Consulting Program effective October 15, 2018. All current contracts will be honored. No new clients are being accepted.
In the first 12 months of the program (July 2017 to June 2018), G2G Lean Consulting negotiated 43 interagency agreements and purchase orders with 18 agencies, issued work orders to 8 of the 18 private sector consulting companies, and increased sales from start-up to over $60k per month. DES passed through 80% of the revenue from interagency agreements and purchase orders to the private sector subcontractors.
Through the short tenure of the program, three major lessons were learned that will help state and local governments improve their contracting efforts.
A new contracting approach, using a 5-yr interagency agreement with subsequent purchase orders, helped state and local government organizations purchase the right help at just the right time.
As the G2G Lean Consulting Program began to work with state and local government organizations, we quickly recognized the need for a faster more flexible interagency agreement process. So we created a new interagency agreement contracting instrument and approach.
Our new instrument and approach included a 5-yr interagency agreement under which one or more purchase orders were created that matched up the state or local government organization with one of the G2G Lean Consulting Program’s competitively selected private sector consultants who served as subcontractors under the interagency agreement.
By offering state and local government leaders the opportunity to create purchase orders under a 5-yr interagency agreement, we were able to help them approach improvement efforts one purchase order at a time, so lessons learned from the last purchase order could inform the next purchase order before the leader decided to commit resources. Each purchase order specified the actual deliverables, timeframes, and costs for the next step in the improvement effort.
This approach resulted in leaders contracting for the right deliverables at the right time, and it gave budget staff greater control over expenditures in multi-phased improvement efforts that occurred over time.
Through continuous improvement of the interagency agreement process, the program reduced its contract making process from several weeks to same-day capability
Through a series of improvements, we were able to reduce the DES side of the interagency agreement process from several weeks to same day capability. By reducing the delays in the process, we were able to bring agencies the help they needed faster.
In contrast to the timelines and level of effort an agency typically puts into a typical RFP process, G2G Lean Consulting customers expressed incredibly high levels of satisfaction with the speed of our interagency agreement contracting process. We literally executed some interagency agreements in one day when the agency’s contracts process could match our readiness. In all cases, we were waiting on the agency’s contracting process; agencies never had to wait on us.
The Lean Government Framework helped leaders determine what improvement was most important to work on next.
On the front end of improvement efforts, the Director of the G2G Lean Consulting program used the Lean Government Framework 2-hour current state interview technique to form a clear understanding of the state or local government organization’s business needs. By obtaining a clear understanding of the agency’s full system business needs, the Director could match the organization up with the best private sector consultant subcontractor to meet the identified business needs.
The Lean Government Framework’s five components (purpose, process, capability, management system, human-centered mindset & culture) proved valuable in helping leaders determine where they had important gaps to close in their current operations, and it helped leaders determine what improvement was most important to work on next.
Overall the Lean Government Framework, and the current state interview technique, proved to be a fast and effective way to help leaders see the gaps in their current way of working and enabled the Director of G2G Lean Consulting and the leader work together to create a purchase order for the right help at the right time.
We are thankful for the government organizations and private sector consultants who participated in a bold experiment to help leaders improve the business of government. We wish you all every success as you continue to improve the value you deliver to your customers.