Faculty of Engineering’s OETU alumni (from left): Adriel, Hui Tian, Sean and Zhiqi

Continuing the journey of change

Amid rapid changes at the University, it is crucial for staff to adopt an agile mindset – which involves being ready for change and seeking innovative ways of working. Four staff from the Faculty of Engineering (FOE) share what it takes to embody the Organisational Excellence (OE) spirit, and how they continued their journeys of change through embracing transformation and continuous improvement at the Dean’s Office.

Low Zhiqi, Senior Manager stressed the importance of keeping staff welfare at the centre of new initiatives. “Even as we focus on organisational needs, we should also consider how the changes can benefit staff,” noted Zhiqi who supports various departments in navigating new undergraduate initiatives.

Zhiqi also observed that organisational culture change is more effective when it is a two-way conversation; and that it is important to remain inquisitive in the journey of change. “Whenever I notice people implementing a seemingly inefficient process, I try to get curious about their motivations, rather than dismiss it as a ‘bad’ practice,” she added.

For Assistant Manager Ong Hui Tian, she discovered that collaborating with colleagues improved her daily work. “Bouncing off ideas and trying out various methods of working with a small group of colleagues was very helpful in developing new ideas or refining existing processes,” reflected Hui Tian who manages secretariat matters, resource optimisation and collaborations at FOE. She shared that her OE Transformation Unit (OETU) experience demonstrated how processes can be improved and transformed, through teamwork and collaboration.

Assistant Manager Adriel Chang shared similar sentiments and expressed that his OETU posting was a period of accelerated professional growth. The experience equipped him with key skillsets that supported his current role in academic matters and resource optimisation. “The OETU stint enabled me to manage greater responsibilities and more challenging projects at the Faculty,” he said. He acknowledged that being motivated to seek continual improvement and innovation made a significant difference.

“Our team worked closely with the departments and admin leads when we executed the department resource reviews and set up the admin council,” said Sean Ngee, Associate Director. He shared that OETU was their close partner in these initiatives, and the collaboration helped to resolve corporate administration pain points. The partnership demonstrated the importance of interdepartmental collaboration, when working towards greater improvement.

Whether it is to improve daily work processes or make a difference through large-scale transformation projects, adopting an agile mindset will enable staff to embrace change in a fast-changing environment.

Organisational Excellence is a strategic initiative undertaken by the University to develop best practices for an efficient and world-class administration to better support NUS’ Vision and Mission. It aims to bring about improved work processes and policies as well as create opportunities for talent development and growth.


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