Ensure that what gets fixed, stays fixed.
Many maintenance managers, and many organisations, “solve” equipment reliability or other important operational or maintenance problems, only to find that the problem resurfaces again in a few months, weeks, or even days. Effective Defect Elimination and Root Cause Analysis makes sure that once a problem is fixed, it stays fixed.
High reliability organisations today recognise that Defect Elimination and Root Cause Analysis (RCA) is an important part of an integrated reliability improvement program. By applying structured, analytical reasoning to equipment reliability and other operational and maintenance problems, the underlying causes of those problems can be identified, and addressed – creating permanent, sustainable improvement. Effective problem-solving is more than “common sense”, and a little training, and subsequent practice, can make an enormous difference to organisational effectiveness.
How we can support you
Our Root Cause Analysis problem solving process:
- Focuses on solutions. We place strong emphasis on the identification, and then implementation, of solutions that are aimed at the cost-effective elimination of causes of failure.
- Focuses on business benefits. We encourage definition of problems in business terms, resulting in the development of solutions that focus on the provision of business benefits.
- Addresses failures at physical, human and organisational levels. Successful Root Cause analysis recognises that causes (and solutions) can exist at multiple levels in the causal chain.
- Avoids the “blame game”. We encourage an open environment that attempts to identify the true root cause of human errors (lack of training, inadequately designed human-machine interfaces, external pressures etc.), rather than focusing on the “blame game”
- Is suitable for one-off significant events, as well as repetitive, chronic failures. Our Root Cause Analysis approach includes training material and a structured approach covering both types of events.
- Is simple and easy to use. The benefits of Root Cause Analysis will be most pronounced when it is adopted by all within your organisation, from Senior Management to the Shop Floor. Our approach is simple and easy to use at all levels within the organisation. There is no need for software or other complicated tools in order to effectively use the approach.
- Can be used by individuals or in teams. Most analyses can be quickly resolved without the need for extensive, time-consuming team meetings, but more complex problems are best solved in teams – our process can accommodate either approach.
- Allows for creativity in solutions. Our approach encourages the development of creative solutions, and does not constrict solution development by using categorical or linear thinking methods.
- Insists on a strong basis in fact. Our process places a strong emphasis on the requirement for all of the identified “causes” of failure to be verified as being factual, before the development of solutions.
We can assist you to eliminate failure causes and establish a culture of reliability improvement by:
- Working with you to developing and establish highly effective defect elimination and Root Cause Analysis processes within your organisation
- Facilitating Root Cause Analysis investigations – in particular those that are complex or require a high level of independence
- Delivering training in Root Cause Analysis and Defect Elimination for your workforce
Related case studies
Operational Readiness Support for Santos
As part of the operational readiness process, Santos identified the need to develop maintenance and integrity management plans to assure the reliability of new facilities.
Ready to achieve more effective reliability practices?
We can provide or train your workforce in best practice Root Cause Analysis (RCA) and defect elimination. To find out more about our capabilities with regards to RCA and defect elimination, feel free to view the case studies above, or contact us for an obligation-free discussion.
Our reliability training courses
Do you need to expand the reliability capabilities of your team? We offer a range of reliability improvement courses, including an essential overview of Root Cause Analysis for team members. Speak to us to discuss in-house training, or customising any course for your organisation.
Our root cause analysis articles
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The 5 Whys technique offers a simple, effective way to uncover the root of an issue. It is best used in troubleshooting and quality-improvement initiatives.
The importance of a no-blame culture for safety and…
As a general rule, we need to be very careful in using punishment as our first and primary response to any safety or reliability incident.
Creating the environment for successful root cause analysis
Experience tells us that, in practice, there are several barriers that inhibit the success of implementation of Root Cause Analysis (RCA) practices.
Why you don’t need software to perform root cause…
A growing number of root cause analysis processes are being supported by software. We need to be careful not to oversell the benefits of software in effective RCA.
Why team-based approaches to root cause analysis are more…
There is a school of thought, particularly among more highly qualified engineering personnel, that problem solving and root cause analysis is best performed by “experts” in their fields.