NHS Lean Training Case Study


The NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership (NWSSP) is an independent organisation, owned and directed by NHS Wales. NWSSP supports NHS Wales through the provision of a comprehensive range of high quality, customer focused support functions and services. 

NHS Shared Services Partnership have their headquarters in SE Wales and lead the professional procurement services of the NHS in Wales as part of a 1000 strong team servicing 4 locations from north to south and east to west.  The NHS Shared Services division was established in 2010 and in 2015 successfully transferred the heart of their management operations and payroll services to a shared site at Companies House in Cardiff.

In 2013 NWSSP Head of Training Services, Sharon Jones, met with Track Training to discuss the future skills needs of the NHS Support Services Partnership in Wales with a mission to sustain and strengthen its teams across the country through an uncertain period of change and to introduce cost reductions by learning and implementing Lean principles in their areas of control.

After meeting with the various Heads of Department within Shared Services it was decided to roll out Introduction to Lean Programmes, leading to a series of workshops being organised as part of the HR roadshow across south and north Wales.  Those members of the teams who wanted to progress onto a full qualification in Lean supported with project coaching and mentoring in the workplace were invited to undertake a level 2 programme in Lean Business Improvement Techniques supported by Welsh Government funding.


After looking at the Lean Business Improvement Techniques (BIT) programme which Track Training delivers to organisations across the UK it was agreed that this nationally recognised industry standard would be a good starting point for the NHS Shared Services in order to implement the skillset required.  Through Track Trainings partnerships with college partners, the organisation was eligible to apply for Welsh Government regional funding initiatives supporting adult training in the workplace.


The Lean programme offered by Track Training was attractive to the NHS Shared Services because of the flexible and professional approach taken to working with teams to help transfer Lean skills and knowledge alongside their normal day job. This meant there was less disruption to the office/warehouse flow whilst staff were engaged in up-skilling that would bring future efficiency benefits to the business. 


Over a short period of time Track Trainings Lean trainers and industry specialists worked closely with staff to manage project teams, gain their respect and commitment and to help embed the skills of Work Place Organisation (5S) and Continuous Improvement Techniques (Kaizen). These projects identified areas for cost savings within the NHS Shared Services and helped staff learn and apply Lean techniques to their departments.


30+ staff achieved accredited units or a full Diploma NVQ in Business Improvement Techniques – a nationally accredited qualification recognised across many industries and respective supply chains. By recognising and sharing examples of good practice and accreditation across NWSSP and their partners, NWSSP are building a culture of quality, continuous improvement and communication.



“Track Trainings specialist Lean programmes have made an impact on our staff and the NHS Shared Services – particularly in planning and executing our move to new offices.  It has given staff teams across the regions of Wales access to a new Lean skills-set with common goals and tailored to the NHS needs – focused on practical business improvement techniques to apply in their everyday work. I was particularly impressed with the amount of projects tackled and mentoring provided to achieve continuous improvement.  Due to NHS budget constraints, without the funding from Track this training would not have taken place and our organisation would not be in as strong a position as it is today.”

Sharon Jones - Training Manager Wales

NHS Shared Services