CDOT Director of Process Improvement Gary Vansuch Presents at the Regis Project Management Institute (PMI) South Roundtable

Gary Vansuch, PSPO/Lean Six Sigma/Change Management/EQC/CQA/CQM; Director of Process Improvement from the Colorado Department of Transportation to the Project Managers (PM) of the Regis Project Management Institute (PMI) South Roundtable on September 28, 2022. Don Gier, associate professor at Anderson College of Business and Computing Regis University supported the PMI Mile Hi Chapter volunteers and guest speaker with session guidance/setup, webinar management and recording ensure the event was a success.

Gary’s presentation was titled The Second Decade of Public Service Improvement Begins: Improving Project Management at the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT). He guided participants through the evolution of process improvement that has occurred and is underway today within CDOT. Gary shared that in 2011 Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper promised to improve state government, noting that “making government more effective, efficient and elegant means listening to our government employees and learning from them how we can do better“. To accomplish this, “CDOT launched the Lean program in nearly every state agency, and today, employee teams are actively identifying waste and inefficiency to create cost savings.” At CDOT, they took this commitment seriously during #FirstDecadeOfImprovementAndInnovation, and combined the principles and practices of Lean project management with change management to make CDOT’s services more effective, efficient and customer-focused. And they are now stepping up their efforts with the start of the #SecondDecadeOfInnvovationAndImprovement at CDOT. Gary also provided attendees with access to more information about the CDOT processes he talked about. He encouraged the attending PMs to visit CDOT’s Center for Innovation, Improvement and Engagement in https://sites.google.com/state.co.us/process-improvement/home .

Gary discussed with PMs how CDOT’s Office of Process Improvement (OPI) initiatives are further improving their three main service lines: (1) Innovation and Engagement Services, (2) Office of business project and change management and (3) Strategy Services

It is through these three (3) service lines that the Office of Process Improvement (OPI) continually works to engage all CDOT’ers to improve their work processes, products and services. From their Lean Everyday Idea (LEI) program for small frontline improvements to the Concept to Project (C2P) program that ensures that larger business improvements are successful and that CDOT realizes the intended benefits. Finally, OPI’s Strategy service area engages others at CDOT to work together to design and execute strategic plans that drive CDOT’s performance.

About the speaker. Gary Vansuch describes himself as follows: “I am the luckiest person on the planet: I have a wonderful wife and we are in our 43rd year of marriage; two wonderful adult children who make important contributions to society in the fields of education and science. I am honored to lead the Very Best Team on the Planet; and I have the best job in the world as a director of process improvement at the Colorado Department of Transportation.

As Director of Process Improvement for the Colorado Department of Transportation, Gary leads efforts to improve the organization’s operations, focusing on improving effectiveness, efficiency and the elegance of government. He has over 30 years of business improvement and change leadership experience in the energy, financial services, research and government services industries. Gary is a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt and Certified Change Management Practitioner. Additionally, Gary served 6 years with the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award program, including 4 years as a Senior Examiner and as a member of the National Case Study Development Team. He was also a judge for the International Team Excellence Awards and a judge for the RIT/USA Quality Cup competition for improvement teams. Gary holds a BS and MS in Industrial Engineering from the University of Tennessee.

CDOT’s process improvement initiative has received national recognition, including designation as a “Bright Idea in Government” from the Innovations in American Government Awards program, which is administered by the University’s Kennedy School of Government. Harvard; and, as the winner of the 2017 North American Employee Engagement Award.

Regis PMI South Roundtable. The Regis PMI South Roundtable is an affiliate of the PMI Mile High Chapter (pmimilehi.org), a chapter that has consistently been among the top 5% in the world. Project Management Institute (www.pmi.org) is the leading project management professional association and the authority for a growing global community of millions of project professionals and individuals who use project management skills.