Overview of LeanStart

LeanStart provides an introduction to Lean concepts and allows you to gain an understanding of what the tools and techniques can do for you and your company in a short, focused engagement.  The initiative is designed for companies that are unfamiliar with and lacking capability in business process improvement methodologies such as Lean and/or other best practice methods specific to particular business sectors.

Lean Start is not just for manufacturing companies.  Software and internationally traded services companies can avail of funding to learn about and implement improvements to their business. Click on Lean4Software to learn how the Lean Business Offer can assist software companies.

Click here to learn how the Lean Business Offer can assist software companies.

From January 2014, LeanStart will incorporate an environmental component titled, First Steps to Green Competitiveness Guidebook. This guidebook was developed by Enterprise Ireland using a simple set of tools to introduce some basic environmental awareness as part of the LeanStart programme. The guidebook will be used by consultants conducting a LeanStart over the course of half a day to show companies how managing their environmental impacts and producing an environmental policy statement can be of benefit to the company. Manufacturing companies should use the following guidebook. Office/Service based companies should use the alternative guidebook (see below).

Companies can apply for grant support towards the cost of hiring a Lean consultant/trainer to undertake a short in-company assignment which will

Assignments will typically be carried out over 8 to 10 weeks.  Companies will be eligible to receive support for a maximum of 7 consultancy days to a limit of €3,150.


Templates for Ecomaps

These template should be used in conjunction with the First Steps to Green Competitiveness Guidebook:

 Water Ecomap  Waste Ecomap  Air Ecomap  Storage Ecomap  Energy Ecomap  Action Sheet  Summary Report

First Steps To Green Competitiveness Guidebook For Office/Service Based Companies

A guidebook has been developed for companies which do not have a manufacturing process. This guidebook should be used instead of the above and demonstrates how a simplified system can be set up to include an Environmental Policy Statement and Environmental Management Programme (EMP) to support it. The Lean consultant will use the guidebook to help companies prepare this. Once in place the EMP remains a live document and can be adapted to suit changing conditions or activities. A copy of the guidebook is available below.

 Download First Steps To Green Competitiveness Guidebook For Services/Office Based Companies

 Download Action Sheet/Summary Report


Am I eligible?

LeanStart is open to small and medium companies that are Enterprise Ireland clients or potential clients who have been trading for at least 5 years engaged in manufacturing or eligible internationally traded services. Large companies are not eligible to apply.


What costs are eligible and what is the maximum funding available?

The typical cost of undertaking a LeanStart assignment is €6,300.  The company must pay the first €3,150 and Enterprise Ireland will provide grant funding for the outstanding costs to a maximum of €3,150. 

The maximum grant funding available from Enterprise Ireland is €3,150. If the cost of the LeanStart assignment is less than €6,300, the company is still required to pay the first €3,150 in costs.

Eligible Expenditure is limited to the cost of hiring a Lean consultant/trainer for a maximum of 7 days. 

The maximum daily fee payable to a consultant/trainer is €900 inclusive of travel and subsistence and all out-of-pocket expenses.

Note: Receipt of other grants from Enterprise Ireland may impact on your eligibility for support under this initiative.


What are the call close dates?

There are no call close dates. The process is not competitive and is approved by Enterprise Ireland management.


How do I apply?

All applications for funding should be discussed with your Enterprise Ireland Adviser prior to submission.  

You can apply via the Enterprise Ireland Online Application System.

Prior to applying you must do the following:tel:+353 1 727 2523

If the company has already initiated a Lean Start assignment before submitting an application to Enterprise Ireland, the application and associated expenditure will not be accepted.


Where can I find a suitable consultant/trainer?

 Directory of consultants/trainers interested in undertaking assignments under this initiative is maintained by Enterprise Ireland.  The directory holds a profile provided by each consultant/trainer on their expertise and experience with Lean projects. A company may select a consultant/trainer from this directory, or it may select a consultant/trainer who is not. In either case, before the company applies for funding, sufficient information must be provided to Enterprise Ireland to demonstrate that the proposed consultant/trainer is qualified to carry out the proposed work and has previously carried out similar assignments satisfactorily.

Enterprise Ireland does not give any warranty, either express or implied, as to the qualifications or suitability of any of the persons on the list of consultants/trainers and Enterprise Ireland will not be liable for any loss and/or damage caused by a company’s decision to retain the services of such a consultant/trainer.


Key contact/more information

For more information, please contact your Enterprise Ireland Adviser.  If you are not a client, please contact your nearest Enterprise Ireland Regional Office.

For general enquiries about the Lean Business Offer, contact


 +353 1 727 2523