Root cause analysis is one of the most vital parts of quality management. Indeed, to remedy the problem that affects the quality of your products, you must aim for the right target. There are many root cause analysis tools that you can use to eliminate different types of problems. Manufacturers should have some of these on hand so that they can apply and use the most appropriate tool for the situation at hand. We will look at five common but effective root cause analysis tools that can ensure production efficiency and quality management in a manufacturing business. But first, let’s look at an example of production efficiency:
An organization that gives maximum results from all its machines, equipment, tools and resources, etc.
A Pareto chart allows you to determine preferences for different problems by grouping different problems together with their costs and frequency rates. This helps to highlight the importance of each, and you can compare them to rank them analytically according to their urgency. This is a bar graph or histogram that uses a line graph to provide a statistical picture of the results. The frequency is displayed in descending order using the bars, and you can view the total or cumulative percentage as the line moves from left to right.
You can research successive layers of a problem by digging deeper into them using the 5Whys approach. It is a set of questions which are all the same, ie “Why?” However, every second why is the result of responding to the previous why. You don’t need advanced statistics or complex data to get to the root of a problem while using this simple tool. It is a very useful technique for performing root cause analysis of simple problems in manufacturing processes and increasing production efficiency. However, it may not be useful for problems of a complex nature. One potential application of the 5 Whys for Quality Management is to do a more in-depth analysis of the results you get from a Pareto analysis.
One of the most useful root cause analysis tools is the Fishbone or Ishakawa Diagram or Cause and Effect Diagram. It takes the approach of finding the original problem by identifying the categories related to it and placing and sorting out all the potential causes. Each category that it works with usually has more sub-causes as you dig deeper into the process.
Point cloud diagram
This approach determines the different variables and uncovers the relationships between each of them using pairs of data points. A scatterplot or scatterplot gives you insight into the correlation of variables and provides you with quantitative data, allowing you to test the potential causes it uncovers.
FMEA – Analysis of failure modes and effects
It is an exploration process that allows you to create a forecast of problems or failures that may arise during the manufacturing phase. FMEA is the ultimate approach to quality assurance as it is performed prior to the production phase when you design the product and processes, guiding you in the right direction before any damage is done.
FMEA is one of the best root cause analysis tools that manufacturing companies can harness to achieve production efficiency in their processes. This is a warning tool that allows you to configure RPN and offers information about detection, occurrence, and severity.
All of the root cause analysis tools mentioned above can help manufacturing companies create and maintain production efficiency. Businesses can improve their quality management systems and increase productivity by performing root cause analysis whenever a production issue arises.
This article does not necessarily reflect the views of the editors or management of EconoTimes.