Senior Director of Continuous Quality Improvement and Innovation (CQI-I)

Job Summary

This position (CQI-I) will lead the newly established continuous quality improvement and innovation division for Heartspring. This role will be key in building a culture of excellence for all existing programs and contribute to a culture of innovation for future service models setting trends for the industry as a whole.

As the Senior Director of CQI-I at Heartspring, you will be the subject matter expert in continuous improvement methodologies, providing oversight and support for program directors, and establishing disciplined continuous improvement approaches that will drive efficiencies across all areas of the organization. This role defines and designs specific process improvement programs as a part of the Heartspring’s strategic direction, and ensures integration and alignment across the organization.

Team Interaction: While this role will work across all layers of the organization, the individual will work closely with the Vice President of Advancement, the Senior Director of Compliance, and the President to build a world class environment for students, staff, and community locally and nationwide.

This position will report to the CEO directly for the first 1-2 years and will then move to the Vice President of Advancement and Innovation’s supervision. This position will represent Heartspring’s unwavering commitment to provide world class education, therapies, and supportive services to children and youth who have intellectual disabilities, developmental disabilities, and other special needs.

Focus: In this role, the individual will work closely with team members to understand:

  • what issues prevent them from being successful in their day to day operations,
  • what problems they identify that interrupt their ability to maintain quality service,
  • what strengths we have that are not being amplified, and
  • collaboratively design innovative solutions to assist.
  • Issues this role will address: gaps in care, needs of families, trauma informed/responsive strategies, growth strategies that take our future industry landscape into account, and future industry trends.

How: The CQI-I collects, tracks, curates, and interprets statistical data relating to quality; recommends changes in standards, processes, staffing, equipment, and materials to facilitate work and maintain quality; creates change cycles to test innovative ideas; and, guides innovation management in all areas.

Environment: The CQI-I will leverage exceptional communication skills to serve both internal and external customers, clients, and patients. As a key role within the Executive Administration, this role will be welcomed into a supportive, team-based leadership approach that models our values regarding: diversity and inclusion, interdisciplinary representation, collaborative leadership, solution-focused problem solving, data-driven decision making, and authentic communication.

Primary Functions

  • Establishes and maintains performance metrics to measure overall program success
  • Prepare reports and statistics
  • Utilizes Lean, Six Sigma, and/or other change management methodologies, and must have appropriate levels of certification for the role
  • Define and Drive organizational transformation that is linked to strategic objective
  • Diagram workflows, including inputs and outputs, of a business or program process
  • Identify opportunities for improvement
  • Develop project plan for implementing improvements and monitoring the new process to ensure it works as intended
  • Work with front-line staff, identifying improvement opportunities, and coaching employees on how to work more efficiently
  • Evaluates opportunities to increase efficiency, decrease cost, and improve quality for all services
  • Supports the CEO and COO in deployment of an Operational Excellence program across the organization through coaching, mentoring, and full engagement across all functions
  • Influence the strategy for planning and implementing process improvement, operating model optimization, and organizational design/integration initiatives;
  • Monitor and manage budget of programmatic improvement efforts
  • Advises management of project status and any significant trends and changes in project progress
  • Identify and implement the necessary tools to support the site transformation such as Tiers, Gembas, mini-transformations / Kaizen, Statistical Process Control, dashboards, and Lean Maturity Assessments
  • Design and support the roll-out of effective coaching programs for site leadership roles on how to effectively lead teams who will help drive continuous improvement efforts
  • Lead the completion of complex process improvement projects across all functions of the organization, as well as coordination of smaller scale quick win events
  • Responsible for coordination of resource needs and deployment to support the continuous improvement efforts across the organization;
  • Ensure all financial reporting and models are properly approved by CFO and delivered on time
  • Establish measurable standards and compare actual results against these, regularly generating detailed update reports for executive team
  • Provide mentoring and directs teams to demonstrate proper application and interpretation of Operational Excellence criteria
  • Monitor progress in order to check if changes yield desirable results
  • Perform and all other duties related to the position as assigned


Educational, Training, and Licensure Requirements

  • Graduate degree Required
  •  5+ years of senior quality improvement performance
  • Knowledge of IDDO industry; regulatory, ethics, compliance, or privacy experience; or any combination of education and experience, which would provide an equivalent background, including strong leadership/managerial skills and ability to motivate/coach other staff
  • Credentialed CQI background preferred. (Six Sigma/Lean/Agile or comparable continuous improvement operating systems) If hired without this, a willingness to be credentialed within first six months

Physical Requirements

  • Ability to travel may be required
  • Ability to work in all service environments in order to learn about existing processes.
  • Sitting at a desk for long periods of time
  • Constant use of overall vision with continuous reading and close-up work
  • Hand and finger dexterity for frequent repetitive writing, typing, grasping, reaching, and pulling
  • Hearing and talking skills in person and on the phone

Work Environment

  • Office environment, indoors, climate controlled.

Knowledge & Skills

Excellent knowledge of:

  • State and federal regulatory requirements specific to the Heartspring mission
  • Statistical analysis, data analytics, designing data collection relevant to Heartspring, and suggesting innovations that both solve problems and grow excellence
  • Regulatory standards, healthcare, IDDO, child development
  • Quality improvement models (Lean Six Sigma, Kaizen, Developmental Evaluation, Design Thinking, Theory U, etc.)
  • Principles/theories of adult learning and competency-based education
  • Risk management
  • Ability to develop and maintain positive relationships while driving for improved performance and accountability
  • Organized and committed to meeting deadlines
  • Coaching-style leadership that inspires team members to give their best effort while setting the direction for initiatives
  • Strong communication & presentation skills (makes complex issues accessible to business audience, clear, concise, and audience appropriate)
  • Demonstrated ability to lead multiple initiatives simultaneously
  • Proficient with use of computer and software applications including Minitab, Microsoft Project, Visio, Word, Excel, PowerPoint. Experience in process mapping
  • Ability to manage resources both directly and via matrix management



Medical, Dental, Vision, FSA, Life Insurance, 403B

Reference Code:


 Print Description

Creating hope and opportunity that changes the lives of children with special needs and their families

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Equal Opportunity Employer

Heartspring is an equal opportunity employer. Heartspring does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, disability or genetics, pregnancy, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any other classification protected by applicable local, state or federal law.

All job openings are located in Wichita, KS.

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