Continuous improvement for the State Services

Last updated: 8 July 2016

Our “better every day” approach to continuous improvement is a proven method to help government agencies deliver better public services.

The State Services Commission has co-developed with agencies the better every day approach to Continuous Improvement (CI). We support agencies to build operating models that put their customers at the front and centre of their work. Our offering has a particular value in helping agencies and sectors work across boundaries when that is what is required to deliver results. 

We achieve this through a team of expert coaches and a practical method for service innovation using data and evidence. We work alongside agency leaders, transferring know how. We don’t do it to them, or for them, we do it with them.

Our approach draws on a range of methods and influences, including the work of John Seddon, W. Edwards Deming, Chris Argyris and Gerard Egan. 

Continuous improvement goes hand in hand with SSC’s Performance Improvement Framework to lift State sector performance.

What our customers say 

Agencies that engaged our CI team in the 2015/16 financial year have awarded their work an average rating of 4.3 (or “very good”) out of 5 for overall value delivered. The ratings were assigned by executive leaders sponsoring the work in Education Payroll Ltd, the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment, Land Information NZ, the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service and the Department of Internal Affairs.

The CI team recently finished working with Education Payroll Ltd, the successor to Novopay, transforming its service to schools. The feedback from teachers, principals and school administrators was that they were finally being delivered a more positive payroll experience. EPL leaders said the work with SSC helped them re-connect with customers, change their thinking and build a new customer-focused operating model. EPL is building on its improved performance and scaling up the new ways of working across the organisation.

See the results of our work in Education Payroll Ltd below (click image to view larger version).

EPL chart

See these videos for first-hand experiences of the “better every day” approach in Education Payroll.

And these videos from Land Information NZ.

See the results of our work at Auckland International Airport Departures with the New Zealand Customs Service, Aviation Security Service and private sector Airport company below (click image to view larger version).

IPANZ chart

The work at the Airport was recognised with the 2015 IPANZ award for Excellence in Achieving Collective Impact.

IPAN Award for Excellence in Achieving Collective Impact

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More about continuous improvement for the State Services

How the “better every day” approach works

Benefits of the “better every day” approach