On February 16th, the Maher & Maher team headed back to the White House to celebrate local partnerships that have embraced the Customer-Centered Design (CCD) Challenge. Eleven teams from across the country were selected to attend the White House Learning Exchange & Celebration, chosen for their extraordinary commitment to improving the customer experience. With the support of a Maher & Maher CCD coach, each team completed rigorous training in customer-centered design and implemented projects with job seekers and employers at the center of innovation within their systems.
The initiative kicked off in July, 2015 when over 600 practitioners attended a webinar to learn about customer-centered design and learn about the CCD challenge. This webinar was hosted by ETA’s Innovation and Opportunity Network (ION) and supported by Maher & Maher. Following the webinar, participants formed over 80 teams of 4- 10 people who had the capacity – and the courage – to think differently about their work. The teams brought together a broad range of partner agencies that demonstrate the best of cross-government collaboration. Each team was assigned a Maher & Maher coach and encouraged by unique CCD Badges for specific accomplishments. Maher & Maher coaches also served as subject matter experts in youth programs, One-stop operations, and business engagement/sector strategies providing teams real-time support along the way.
At the White House convening, the teams had the opportunity to hear from a variety of Federal Leadership, including representatives from the White House, Department of Labor, and Department of Health and Human Services who praised the eleven teams for their commitment to the innovative approach to improve service delivery.
Capitalizing on the creative energy of the eleven CCD teams, Christy Montgomery, a Maher & Maher Coach, facilitated rapid ideation and prototyping exercises where teams created prototypes of their ideas. “It may have seemed strange to passers-by who looked in the White House meeting room to see tables filled with Play-Doh, pipe cleaners, toy soldiers, and other arts and craft supplies. In working together to build prototypes, you begin to see a visual of how powerful an impact the design can have.” adds Montgomery.
Leaving the White House, there was a renewed focus for all to continue peer-to-peer learning and the sharing of promising practices as the teams move forward in designing services to better meet customer needs leading to positive outcomes.
You can hear teams from California, Georgia, Tennessee and Pennsylvania talk about the impact the Customer Centered Design Challenge had for them by clicking here.
Maher & Maher looks forward to continuing support for ETA with a second round of the challenge that will expand focus to other key WIOA principles. View other upcoming resources by visiting the ION.
Maher & Maher is a specialized change management and talent development consulting firm based in New Jersey and Washington, D.C. The firm is the national Technical Assistance (TA) contractor for Sector Strategies for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration (ETA) as well as the TA contractor supporting ETA’s implementation of WIOA. For more information about our services visit us at www.mahernet.com or call us at 1-888-90-Maher.