Ensure process improvements are sustained

This unit of competency covers the skills and knowledge required to ensure that the gains which have been made by using improved methods, processes and equipment are sustained as the new baseline/standard for an area of work and so prevent regression to former practices, or digression to less efficient practices.


This unit applies to individuals working in a team or work area who have already implemented competitive systems and practices related improvements in their own work and who must work effectively with others implementing competitive systems and practices to ensure that performance improvement gains are sustained.

The unit is also suitable for individuals who have formal or informal responsibility for the work of others, such as team leaders; individuals, such as senior operators, who must mentor others; or individuals, such as technicians and tradespeople, who must integrate the application of their technical skills with the implementation of competitive systems and practices in an organisation.

The unit can be applied to all areas of an organisation, including production, maintenance, logistics and office functions.

The unit covers the implementation of practices to ensure that process improvements are sustained and opportunities taken to suggest further improvements. If mistake proofing is used as one of the methods for ensuring that process improvements are sustained, the unit MSS403051A Mistake proof a production process should be selected.

Improvement initiatives can be made by any of any number of methods and by teams or individuals. The unit assumes that desired levels of performance or quality are known.

This unit requires the application of skills associated with problem solving, initiative and enterprise, and planning and organising in order to check and monitor the impacts of change. It also requires communication and the ability to work with others to assess the impact of change in own work and on other’s work, as well as self-management and learning to adapt improvements according to new information and feedback.


Not applicable.

Elements and Performance Criteria


Examine previous improvements


Identify impact of previous process improvements to systems, equipment, operations or products in work area


Identify improvements that have not met objectives


Ensure corrective actions are implemented


Identify corrective actions that can be taken on process improvements that have not met objectives


Liaise with relevant people associated with the anticipated corrective action


Obtain any required approvals


Ensure the supply of resources


Check impacts of corrective action on occupational health and safety (OHS), quality and environmental systems in work area and take action in accordance with procedures, if required


Check that self and others in team or work area have required skills for corrective actions


Monitor implementation of corrective action


Make required adjustments


Verify systems support improvement


Ensure procedures reflect improvements


Check that training and assessment activities in team or work area reflect improvements


Liaise with relevant people to ensure their support of the new or modified system/s


Audit the change


Determine an appropriate audit period/cycle


Agree relevant measures/indicators for the improvement


Measure performance at agreed times using agreed measures


Investigate causes of under-performance


Take appropriate corrective action to improve performance


Re-audit the improvement on an agreed basis

Required Skills

Required skills

Required skills include:

communicating with others to clarify scope and stage of implementation of competitive systems and practices and contribute suggestions for further improvements in implementation

examining normal operational procedures in terms of flow and contribution to customer benefit

planning own tasks, including the impact on others to support competitive systems and practices implementation

implementing competitive systems and practices in own work area according to instructions

identifying waste (muda)

monitoring competitive systems and practices performance indicators for own work and work area

Required knowledge

Required knowledge includes:

overall procedures for and process of operations relative to improvements being made

appropriate measures of performance

business performance goals sufficient to determine best measures of improved performance

Evidence Required

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit

A person who demonstrates competency in this unit must be able to provide evidence of the ability to:

identify process and operational changes as a result of implementation of competitive systems and practices

identify and assess impact of performance improvements in a work area against objectives

identify actions and resources required for further improvements

communicate and negotiate with others on improvements

apply procedures for seeking approvals and reporting non-conformances

determine appropriate period and procedures for monitoring implemented changes.

Context of and specific resources for assessment

Assessment of performance must be undertaken in a workplace using or implementing one or more competitive systems and practices.

Access may be required to:

workplace procedures and plans relevant to work area

specifications and documentation relating to planned, currently being implemented, or implemented changes to work processes and procedures relevant to the assessee

documentation and information in relation to production, waste, overheads and hazard control/management

reports from supervisors/managers

case studies and scenarios to assess responses to contingencies.

Method of assessment

A holistic approach should be taken to the assessment.

Competence in this unit may be assessed by using some combination of the following to generate evidence:

demonstration in the workplace

workplace projects

suitable simulation

case studies/scenarios (particularly for assessment of contingencies, improvement scenarios, and so on)

targeted questioning

reports from supervisors, peers and colleagues (third-party reports)

portfolio of evidence.

In all cases it is expected that practical assessment will be combined with targeted questioning to assess underpinning knowledge.

Where applicable, reasonable adjustment must be made to work environments and training situations to accommodate ethnicity, age, gender, demographics and disability.

Guidance information for assessment

Assessment processes and techniques must be culturally appropriate and appropriate to the oracy, language and literacy capacity of the candidate and the work being performed.

Range Statement

The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Competitive systems and practices

Competitive systems and practices may include, but are not limited to:

lean operations

agile operations

preventative and predictive maintenance approaches

monitoring and data gathering systems, such as Systems Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) software, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, Materials Resource Planning (MRP) and proprietary systems

statistical process control systems, including six sigma and three sigma

Just in Time (JIT), kanban and other pull-related operations control systems

supply, value, and demand chain monitoring and analysis


continuous improvement (kaizen)

breakthrough improvement (kaizen blitz)

cause/effect diagrams

overall equipment effectiveness (OEE)

takt time

process mapping

problem solving

run charts

standard procedures

current reality tree

Competitive systems and practices should be interpreted so as to take into account:

the stage of implementation of competitive systems and practices

the size of the enterprise

the work organisation, culture, regulatory environment and the industry sector


Improvement may be any change aimed at reducing waste (muda). This unit is not about making the improvements, but ensuring beneficial changes remain in place


Customers may include:

internal or external customers, including final customers, as these should be used as the basis for the identification of value and waste

The individual does not need to interface directly with the external customer, but should be able to sufficiently identify customer benefit and customer features in processes and operations of their team and their work area


Suppliers may be:

internal or external suppliers and should be sufficiently close to the individual’s work as to be easily identifiable

The operator does not need to interface directly with external suppliers, but should be provided with sufficient information to enable them to identify supplier contribution to their own work and to customer benefit


Systems are used to mean any/all of the equipment, processes, procedures and work practices that are used to produce the product. A term often used in this context includes:

kaizen - the philosophy of continual improvement that every process can and should be continually evaluated and improved in terms of time required, resources used, resultant quality and other aspects relevant to the process


Resources for corrective actions may include:





suitable work area


Procedures may include:

work instructions

standard operating procedures


batch sheets

temporary instructions and similar instructions provided for the smooth running of the organisation

good operating practice as may be defined by industry codes of practice (e.g. good manufacturing practice (GMP) and responsible care) and government regulations

Procedures may be:

written, verbal, computer-based or in some other format


Improvements include:

techniques for preventing mistakes by designing the operations process, equipment and tools so that an operation literally cannot be performed incorrectly (e.g. baka-yoke)

techniques that generate warning signals were a mistake is about to be performed (poka-yoke)

Improvements may be sustained by:

use of technology so that it is impossible to do the job any other way

changes to process or procedures or other changes to the operations system which, if followed, will sustain the change and this unit may be applied to all these situations

Measuring performance

Measuring improvements may include:

personally taking measurements

arranging for measurements to be taken/made by appropriate personnel


Unit sector

Competitive systems and practices

Employability Skills

This unit contains employability skills.

Licensing Information

Not applicable.