What we do

The ICBE Advanced Productivity Network, formerly Innovation Lean Six Sigma, was established over 12 years ago by the Irish Centre for Business Excellence. The Network was tasked with identifying national and international best practice and through targeted interventions enabled network members to become Internationally recognised centres of excellence. Focusing initially on Lean, Six Sigma and Shingo the network has expanded to include key technologies and methodologies from automation to data analytics including additive manufacturing.

Comprising of over 200 cross sectoral members, the network has delivered over 34,000 training days, with 5,500 individuals across 700 companies, 144 best practice visits and assisted with the achievement of over 11 Shingo Awards.

With a focus on People, Processes and Technology the network has expanded its learning networks from assisting larger organisations to actively embracing SMEs and indigenous companies.

Some key activities include:

  • Formal Shingo International Best Practice Award
  • Come|See|Learn and Tell Best Practice Company Visits
  • Industry led courses
  • Knowledge Sharing Network

Our aims

Through the structures of the Irish Centre for Business Excellence the ICBE Advanced Productivity Network aims to:

  • Provide the right productivity knowledge, to the right person, in the right format and at the right time.
  • Shorten the novice to expert trajectory of our member organisations.
  • Create awareness about future developments in Automation, Robotics and Advanced Manufacturing.
  • Increase efficiency and competitive advantage through vibrant collaborative networks.
  • Demonstrate the impact, effectiveness and continued relevance of Lean and Six Sigma concepts and practices; especially in Product Design.
  • Enhance Ireland’s international profile through member Shingo Prize Accreditations.
  • To increase the competitive advantage of member companies and of Ireland as a whole.

Promoting Agency

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Steering Group

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Member Companies

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About Skillnet Ireland

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Management Development

Enhancing management capacity, particularly in SMEs, is key priority for all Skillnet Ireland networks. In addition to the programmes our network delivers, Skillnet Ireland has a suite of Management Development Programmes available to help business owners and managers improve business performance and enable businesses achieve better results. Click here for more information on the Skillnet Ireland website.

Employment Activation Programme

ICBE Advanced Productivity Skillnet focusses on supporting those in employment within the manufacturing and service sector. A number of other Skillnet Networks participate in the Skillnet Ireland Employment Activation programme. This initiative is designed exclusively for unemployed people and includes free training in skills in demand by companies combined with direct access to employers through meaningful work placements.

For further information on Skillnet Networks offering free training programmes for those seeking employment, subject to eligibility criteria, see the Skillnet Ireland website.


“We have had a long and proud history of mutual involvement with ICBE.
We’ve been awarded the Shingo bronze on two occasions and a key part of our success has been our ability to dip into the ICBE network and discover best practice. We have really been able to

take the knowledge sharing on board and reflect that in the way we do business in New Ross. It’s been a powerful plus to have ICBE there for us. They were a significant partner for us and introduced us to others on the Shingo journey. It provided access and sharing of information and similarly we have opened our doors to other companies.
Its shared knowledge and shared learning – that’s the ethos that ICBE has created.
I think it provides a safe, non-competitive environment for competitors to share best practice, to wear the green jersey for Ireland, and it is one of the reasons Ireland is a hub for awards.”
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Jim O’Neill

Site CI Manager

“I would certainly recommend ICBE membership.
It’s been good for us, it has offered us opportunities to network, to get funded training, to come to events and conferences and get

to hear the greatest and the best talk about what they do. I would endorse companies becoming involved.”
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Sean Feeney

Director, Supply Chain & OE

“The best practice visits are vital for us. Going to see what other companies are doing – using other companies bench marks so we can bring back tools or systems that they are using. Also, the Call for Support is brilliant. We can

send in an email and get feedback from other companies who have experience in your project as well. We can get groups of people to go on these visits.”
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Claire O’Mahony

CI Manager