Department of Human Resources

Classroom Training
Continuous Improvement Practitioner (CIP) Program Logo

Continuous Improvement Practitioner (CIP) Program

The Continuous Improvement Practitioner Program is designed to increase the State’s internal capacity to promote, facilitate, and implement systematic and sustainable improvement efforts by developing groups of skilled practitioners to lead and support those efforts. Participants must be nominated by their organization and will be expected to use the skills and knowledge gained to make ongoing contributions to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their organizations. The program is also intended to foster connections and relationship building among participants to establish a diverse community of continuous improvement practitioners across organizations that will continue to assist and support one another as contributing members of the GEAR Field Team.

“The CIP program is top-notch education. It feels amazing knowing I’m making a difference working alongside a group of folks who embrace continuous improvement!”

- CIP Graduate

The Program

The program runs twice per year with cohorts starting in the spring and fall and running for approximately four months each. Through practical exercises and collaborating on an actual State project, the participant will gain valuable skills in three industry-recognized areas of best practice:

Project Management

Covers the fundamental knowledge, terminology, and processes of effective project management. To ensure our project management methods are aligned with best practices, the training leverages the body of knowledge, and glossary of terms, established and maintained by the Project Management Institute (PMI). Completion of the project management segment of training provides CIP graduates with sufficient instructional hours to be eligible to take the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) exam.

Lean Process Improvement

Provides an overview of the principles of Lean thinking and how they can be applied in state government. This segment of training takes an in-depth look at tools and techniques to achieve operational excellence and how to build a culture that supports continuous improvement.

Change Management

Gives participants the knowledge, skills, and tools to facilitate successful change initiatives. It also provides guidance on how to integrate change management with project management and lean process improvement efforts. Completion of the change management segment of training provides CIP graduates with an industry-recognized certification in change management.

“I was able to immediately begin using my new knowledge to benefit the State of Delaware and its citizens. This program and my amazing cohort also gave me the courage and confidence to go for an exciting promotion.”

- CIP Graduate

Team Meeting


  • State employees who are currently in or who will fill a role responsible for continuous improvement in their organizations. Participants may include directors and managers, project managers, project team members, organizational development specialists, and quality assurance professionals, among others.

  • Each participant must have an actionable project agreed to by their leadership to be initiated or expanded during training. Agency leadership is expected to support graduates of the program by giving them dedicated time and resources to lead continuous improvement projects.

  • Team nominations are encouraged. Because this program incorporates actual State project work, we encourage teams of employees working on a common project to enroll in the program together. There is a limit of four team members per project, and each member must apply. Please note that not all team members may be accepted.


  • To complete the program, participants must attend all scheduled training, as well as spend additional time outside of the training schedule for required project work.

  • Participants will be required to make a final presentation to demonstrate their ability to apply the content covered in the training.

  • After completion of the program, graduates are expected to use the skills and knowledge gained to make ongoing contributions to continuous improvement projects and share the associated measurable outcomes for their organizations with the GEAR Board.

  • Participants’ commitment also extends to becoming a member of a broader community and contributing as members of the GEAR Field Team.

“Empowered. Aligned. Connected. Three words that describe my feelings and experience participating in the CIP program. On a personal level, the program has exponentially increased my confidence in participating in projects, small and large.”

- CIP Graduate

Program Schedule

  • Two sessions are run each year according to the following approximate schedules:

    • Fall Program Session - September to January
    • Spring Program Session - February to June
  • The project management coursework occurs over nine half-day sessions over roughly five weeks. Lean coursework occurs across a combination of eight half and full-day sessions over roughly five weeks with four half-day coaching sessions. Change management coursework occurs across three full-day intensive sessions over one week. The program ends with a capstone presentation that includes a half-day prep session with a full day of cohort presentations and feedback.

Program Funding

This program is currently funded through the First State Quality Improvement Fund and provided at no cost to accepted applicants.

Application Form 

This program was developed in partnership with and supported by


Contact Information:

Larry Trunfio 
Training Administrator
(302) 739-1990