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Katke Golf Course

Students Take on Experimental Project with Katke

Spring 2021 Experiential Student Team Project

August 23, 2021

During the Spring 2021 semester, students in Dr. Lisa Eshbach’s Lean Culture and Skills Development class teamed up with Ferris State University Katke Golf Course manager, Brian Corwin, and Hispanic/Latino Cultural Center Director, Kaylee Burke. The teams worked on improving the small group reservation scheduling and the Promesa Summer Success application processes using Training Within Industry and Lean Principles. The Katke Golf Course, a nationally renowned university golf course. In addition to the 21 holes of championship superb golfing, Katke also offers one of the finest golf learning facilities in the Midwest.

Brian shared with the team that it was challenging to train new employees on the small group reservation process because the process occurred more infrequently than the other incoming requests at Katke. As such, when reservations were requested, the execution of the process appeared to be inefficient and unorganized thereby affecting the overall customer service experience. The business case for developing a standardized work and applying several other lean tools for this process was evident. The student team (Tyler Glynn, Samantha Krauss, Michael Pouba, and Hanna Zimmer) worked with Brian and developed a Current State Map (CSM) to better understand the current process. The team then created a Future State Map (FSM), Job Instruction/Standardized work, Job Methods and Program Development for the proposed process. The team also recommended a Hoshin Kanri and Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) system, as methods for cascading and sustaining the changes. The proposed improvements included decreasing cycle time by 57%, increased quality by 10% and increasing customer retention and employee Job Satisfaction by 50% and 10%, respectively. The average ROI was 86% and the estimated payback period was approximately 2 months for the proposed solutions.

The Promesa Summer Success is a free, eight-week program for juniors and seniors in high school. The program combines academics, college preparation along with various cultural experiences. Students can earn up to seven college credits during the summer program.

Students experiencing class through Zoom

Kaylee shared with the team that the Promesa Summer Success application process was experiencing some inefficiencies that resulted in communication issues. The student team (Alycia Burmeister, Alison Dodd, Mitch Garland and Edith Moreno) worked with Kaylee and developed a Current State Map (CSM) to better understand the current process. The team then created a Future State Map (FSM) and Job Instruction/Standardized work for the newly designed application process. They also had the opportunity to implement their Program Development plan and virtually trained, due to COVID-19 restrictions, four employees in the Hispanic/Latino Cultural Center on the new Standardized Work.

The student team’s standardized work reduced errors and cycle time by 5% and 60%, respectively. The new process created a more user-friendly platform for the employees, enhanced employee autonomy throughout the application processes, and enhanced the safety of all employees while working on the process. Additionally, the newly created process resulted in a payback period of less than 3 months.

Special thanks to Brian Corwin and Kaylee Burke for their time, providing access, process information and the opportunity for the student teams to apply theory to practice through these projects.

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