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Root Cause Analysis - When is a problem not a problem?


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In Root Cause Analysis, the problem definition is critical to ensuring the investigation is meaningful and worthwhile. ARMS Reliability and the Apollo Root Cause Analysis methodology give you the skills to systematically conduct root cause analysis investigations to ensure your investigations are focussed and effective

Published in: Business, Technology

Root Cause Analysis - When is a problem not a problem?

  1. 1. When is aproblem not a problem?Why the problem definition is critical to an effective Root Cause Analysis
  2. 2. Spending time on the problem definition means the RealityChart is concise and the time to develop it is less of a drain Consider this example © 2012 ARMS Reliability 2
  3. 3. A forward thinking maintenancemanager dedicated two hours, every two weeks, to run RCA workshops. The goal? To understand and resolve thesmall, niggling, day to day issues. © 2012 ARMS Reliability 3
  4. 4. It was a “show and tell” affair, where the technicians would bring failed items, and the group would try toimplement solutions. They set about it with little structure and a “problem-solution” mentality. © 2012 ARMS Reliability 4
  5. 5. Eventually the Apollo Root Cause Analysis Process was implemented to give the sessions some structure © 2012 ARMS Reliability 5
  6. 6. AbigProblem was identified © 2012 ARMS Reliability 6
  7. 7. One of the technicians complained aboutthe dry break couplings used on the tanker offloading systems “They want changing, they‟re dreadful, and they cost around £5,000. They fail every month or two and there are four in use on the plant”. Ignoring the solution the technician gave, it was a great definition and a significant problem © 2012 ARMS Reliability 7
  8. 8. Following the Apollo RCA Process we started with the problem definition of “offloading couplings are dreadful” We added the where and the when then moved onto the significance. © 2012 ARMS Reliability 8
  9. 9. “Well……..actually…… I‟ve started repairing them, rather than throwing them away” What does that involve? “I change the „O‟ rings” “How much do they cost?” “£10” – low significance, there then!A failure every 1-2 weeks, how much downtime does the failure cost? © 2012 ARMS Reliability 9
  10. 10. “Well, when it starts getting tight to use, I‟ve asked the operator to tell me and I plan some time with him” excellent, no real downtime then either! © 2012 ARMS Reliability 10
  11. 11. Presumably the time to repair has some effect on the plant?“Well….. No, not really, it‟s a fairly quick job” © 2012 ARMS Reliability 11
  12. 12. So we needed to find solutions to „dreadfuloffloading couplings‟ trying to save the business £10 per month with no down time and no significant impact on production? © 2012 ARMS Reliability 12
  13. 13. “Yeah, well…. butthey‟re still dreadful!” said the technician. © 2012 ARMS Reliability 13
  14. 14. The rest of the team pointed out that he‟d alreadyinvestigated it, found robust solutions and implemented those solutions!All that needed doing was to communicate the success. © 2012 ARMS Reliability 14
  15. 15. A quick learning slide and the new „best practice‟ shared across the site. “Problem” solved.You don‟t get a more concise RealityChart than that! © 2012 ARMS Reliability 15
  16. 16. Learn more about the ApolloRoot Cause Analysis Process for solving your business problems at © 2012 ARMS Reliability 16