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Rob Keefer, PhD

@rbkeefer
Fail Smart, Not Just Fast:
Use Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA)
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
Big Idea
Understanding failure modes and
potential mitigation strategies can
(hopefully) lead to a successful project.
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
FMEA
FMEA - Failure Mode and Effects Analysis
Originally developed to understand reliability of
manufacturing systems and manufactured components
Used to review components, assemblies, and subsystems
to identify failure modes and their causes and effects.
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
Risk Canvas
GOAL
Constraints
Blocks
Positive Outcomes
Negative Outcomes
Success Requirements
Risks Contingency
Next Steps
• What is the business goal / need?
• What boundaries do we have?
• What parameters do we have to
work within?
• What stands in the way of success?
• When we look back on the project,
what caused us to fail?
• What are the positive impacts on the
organization, team, culture, etc. that
are realized by pressing toward the
goal?
• What are the negative impacts on
the product, organization, team,
culture, etc. that are realized by
pressing toward the goal?
• What needs to happen for this
project to be successful?
• What will lead to positive outcomes?
• What will definitely jeopardize
success?
• What will lead to negative
outcomes?
• What needs to happen and by when
in order for the project to continue?
• If the project is not successful, what
backup plans exist?
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
Risk Canvas Example
GOAL
Constraints
Blocks
Positive Outcomes
Negative Outcomes
Success Requirements
Risks Contingency
Next Steps
• Successful release.
• March 31, 2017 Delivery (5 months)
• Complexity of a large team (~ 40
people)
• Education / Ramp-up of team
• <Backend Product>
• Product Owner
• <Client> has a successful release
• <Client> has a new alpha team with
a new mindset
• Rush to deliver jeopardizes quality
• Rush to deliver looses user focus
• Rush to deliver creates an endless,
stressful production support phase
• Teams work on ‘keeping it running’
rather than new enhancements
• Unable to deliver for release
• Business loses faith in IT
• End Customer loses faith in
<Client>
Team:
• PO is proactive, simplicity focused,
and driven towards a common goal
• Simplest team configurations (small,
direct, self sufficient, self-organized)
• Performance, Unit, and Integration
Testing Coverage
Environment:
• STAGE and PROD infrastructure
• Consistent and dedicated
Production support from <Client>
Technology:
• Simplest architecture
• Performance / stress testing tools
from <Client>
• PO / Business partner creates a
poisonous environment
• PO / Business partner micro
manages
• PO / Business partner does not
have a proactive, end in mind
mindset
• Working Agreement (escalation /
resolution)
• Measures for Success
• Use <Backend Product> only
• Use <New System> for specific use
cases, use <Backend Product> for
all others
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
Exercise
Project: Replace entire existing software system
• The Orlando Research Company performs detailed internet-based research and produces
summary reports of the findings.
• Sales team uses system to track potential leads, make calls, process the sale, and deliver the
final report.
• Operations team uses the system to manage research projects and the outsourced teams of
people who perform the research and writhe the report. Operations is also responsible for
tracking delivery progress and quality.
• Development team of 2 experienced developers and 4 junior developers are mostly familiar with
the technology.
• Product Owner is busy with her other responsibilities and is difficult to get on her calendar.
• Business owner is a driven entrepreneur with many ideas and high expectations of everyone
around him. He is known to be hard to work with.
• System must be delivered with $600,000 and 6 months.
• More to come … Just Ask.
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
FMEA Anchors
Severity Probability/Likelihood
Mitigation
1 - Negligible ( no effect on project success )
2 - Marginal ( minor effect, measured in hours )
3 - Significant ( moderate effect, measured in days )
5 - Critical ( serious effect, measured in weeks )
8 - Catastrophic ( leads to project failure )
1 - Extremely Unlikely ( < 5% )
2 - Unlikely ( < 10% )
3 - Possible ( 10 - 30% )
5 - Likely ( 30 - 50% )
8 - Extremely Likely ( < 50% )
1 - Definite ( self-mitigating )
2 - Extremely Likely ( sense/correct immediately )
3 - Likely ( hours to sense/correct )
5 - Unlikely ( days to sense/correct )
8 - Extremely Unlikely ( weeks to sense/correct )
Risk Index
- Low Risk
- Moderately Low Risk
- Moderately High Risk
- High Risk
1-10
11-30
31-60
> 60
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
Project FMEA
Task
Potential
Failure
Severity
Potential
Cause of
Failure
Probability
How Do We
Know
Mitigation Risk Index
Example:

Move a collection
of farm animals
from New York to
Indiana
Trailer is on
shoulder of road
2
Angry sheep
kicked the walls
of the trailer 1
Trailer on the side
of the road
3 6
System meets
performance
expectations
Efforts to
mitigate
performance
do not fulfill
expectations
8
Underlying
technologies
cannot be
optimized
2
Performance
tests fail due to
time-out issues

( t > 5
seconds )
5 80
Severity Probability/Likelihood Mitigation
1 - Negligible ( no effect on project success )
2 - Marginal ( minor effect, measured in hours )
3 - Significant ( moderate effect, measured in days )
5 - Critical ( serious effect, measured in weeks )
8 - Catastrophic ( leads to project failure )
1 - Extremely Unlikely ( < 5% )
2 - Unlikely ( < 10% )
3 - Possible ( 10 - 30% )
5 - Likely ( 30 - 50% )
8 - Extremely Likely ( < 50% )
1 - Definite ( self-mitigating )
2 - Extremely Likely ( sense/correct immediately )
3 - Likely ( hours to sense/correct )
5 - Unlikely ( days to sense/correct )
8 - Extremely Unlikely ( weeks to sense/correct )
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
Project FMEA Example
Task
Potential
Failure
Severity
Potential
Cause of
Failure
Probability
How Do We
Know
Mitigation Risk Index
Example:

Move a collection
of farm animals
from New York to
Indiana
Trailer is on
shoulder of road
2
Angry sheep
kicked the walls
of the trailer
1
Trailer on the side
of the road
3 6
System meets
performance
expectations
Efforts to
mitigate
performance
do not fulfill
expectations
8
Underlying
technologies
cannot be
optimized
2
Performance
tests fail due to
time-out issues

( t > 5 seconds )
5 80
Development
Cost is
Approved
Cost estimates
for
development
are not
approved
5
Business
determines
that costs are
too high to
justify effort
3
Approval of
Costs is stalled
by <DATE> 5 75
Identify /
Replace PO by
<DATE>
New PO
cannot be
named in a
timely manner
5
Difficult to free
someone from
daily
responsibilities
2
Unidentified
PO on <DATE>
5 50
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
Exercise
Project: Replace entire existing software system
• The Orlando Research Company performs detailed internet-based research and produces
summary reports of the findings.
• Sales team uses system to track potential leads, make calls, process the sale, and deliver the
final report.
• Operations team uses the system to manage research projects and the outsourced teams of
people who perform the research and writhe the report. Operations is also responsible for
tracking delivery progress and quality.
• Development team of 2 experienced developers and 4 junior developers are mostly familiar with
the technology.
• Product Owner is busy with her other responsibilities and is difficult to get on her calendar.
• Business owner is a driven entrepreneur with many ideas and high expectations of everyone
around him. He is known to be hard to work with.
• System must be delivered with $600,000 and 6 months.
• More to come … Just Ask.
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
FMEA Anchors
Severity Probability/Likelihood
Mitigation
1 - Negligible ( no effect on project success )
2 - Marginal ( minor effect, measured in hours )
3 - Significant ( moderate effect, measured in days )
5 - Critical ( serious effect, measured in weeks )
8 - Catastrophic ( leads to project failure )
1 - Extremely Unlikely ( < 5% )
2 - Unlikely ( < 10% )
3 - Possible ( 10 - 30% )
5 - Likely ( 30 - 50% )
8 - Extremely Likely ( < 50% )
1 - Definite ( self-mitigating )
2 - Extremely Likely ( sense/correct immediately )
3 - Likely ( hours to sense/correct )
5 - Unlikely ( days to sense/correct )
8 - Extremely Unlikely ( weeks to sense/correct )
Risk Index
- Low Risk
- Moderately Low Risk
- Moderately High Risk
- High Risk
1-10
11-30
31-60
> 60
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
Big Idea
Understanding failure modes and
potential mitigation strategies can
(hopefully) lead to a successful project.
pomiet.com @rbkeefer
Continue the Conversation
Rob Keefer, PhD
rob.Keefer@pomiet.com
@rbkeefer

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Fail Smart, Not Just Fast: FMEA Workshop

  • 1. Rob Keefer, PhD
 @rbkeefer Fail Smart, Not Just Fast: Use Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA)
  • 2. pomiet.com @rbkeefer Big Idea Understanding failure modes and potential mitigation strategies can (hopefully) lead to a successful project.
  • 3. pomiet.com @rbkeefer FMEA FMEA - Failure Mode and Effects Analysis Originally developed to understand reliability of manufacturing systems and manufactured components Used to review components, assemblies, and subsystems to identify failure modes and their causes and effects.
  • 4. pomiet.com @rbkeefer Risk Canvas GOAL Constraints Blocks Positive Outcomes Negative Outcomes Success Requirements Risks Contingency Next Steps • What is the business goal / need? • What boundaries do we have? • What parameters do we have to work within? • What stands in the way of success? • When we look back on the project, what caused us to fail? • What are the positive impacts on the organization, team, culture, etc. that are realized by pressing toward the goal? • What are the negative impacts on the product, organization, team, culture, etc. that are realized by pressing toward the goal? • What needs to happen for this project to be successful? • What will lead to positive outcomes? • What will definitely jeopardize success? • What will lead to negative outcomes? • What needs to happen and by when in order for the project to continue? • If the project is not successful, what backup plans exist?
  • 5. pomiet.com @rbkeefer Risk Canvas Example GOAL Constraints Blocks Positive Outcomes Negative Outcomes Success Requirements Risks Contingency Next Steps • Successful release. • March 31, 2017 Delivery (5 months) • Complexity of a large team (~ 40 people) • Education / Ramp-up of team • <Backend Product> • Product Owner • <Client> has a successful release • <Client> has a new alpha team with a new mindset • Rush to deliver jeopardizes quality • Rush to deliver looses user focus • Rush to deliver creates an endless, stressful production support phase • Teams work on ‘keeping it running’ rather than new enhancements • Unable to deliver for release • Business loses faith in IT • End Customer loses faith in <Client> Team: • PO is proactive, simplicity focused, and driven towards a common goal • Simplest team configurations (small, direct, self sufficient, self-organized) • Performance, Unit, and Integration Testing Coverage Environment: • STAGE and PROD infrastructure • Consistent and dedicated Production support from <Client> Technology: • Simplest architecture • Performance / stress testing tools from <Client> • PO / Business partner creates a poisonous environment • PO / Business partner micro manages • PO / Business partner does not have a proactive, end in mind mindset • Working Agreement (escalation / resolution) • Measures for Success • Use <Backend Product> only • Use <New System> for specific use cases, use <Backend Product> for all others
  • 6. pomiet.com @rbkeefer Exercise Project: Replace entire existing software system • The Orlando Research Company performs detailed internet-based research and produces summary reports of the findings. • Sales team uses system to track potential leads, make calls, process the sale, and deliver the final report. • Operations team uses the system to manage research projects and the outsourced teams of people who perform the research and writhe the report. Operations is also responsible for tracking delivery progress and quality. • Development team of 2 experienced developers and 4 junior developers are mostly familiar with the technology. • Product Owner is busy with her other responsibilities and is difficult to get on her calendar. • Business owner is a driven entrepreneur with many ideas and high expectations of everyone around him. He is known to be hard to work with. • System must be delivered with $600,000 and 6 months. • More to come … Just Ask.
  • 7. pomiet.com @rbkeefer FMEA Anchors Severity Probability/Likelihood Mitigation 1 - Negligible ( no effect on project success ) 2 - Marginal ( minor effect, measured in hours ) 3 - Significant ( moderate effect, measured in days ) 5 - Critical ( serious effect, measured in weeks ) 8 - Catastrophic ( leads to project failure ) 1 - Extremely Unlikely ( < 5% ) 2 - Unlikely ( < 10% ) 3 - Possible ( 10 - 30% ) 5 - Likely ( 30 - 50% ) 8 - Extremely Likely ( < 50% ) 1 - Definite ( self-mitigating ) 2 - Extremely Likely ( sense/correct immediately ) 3 - Likely ( hours to sense/correct ) 5 - Unlikely ( days to sense/correct ) 8 - Extremely Unlikely ( weeks to sense/correct ) Risk Index - Low Risk - Moderately Low Risk - Moderately High Risk - High Risk 1-10 11-30 31-60 > 60
  • 8. pomiet.com @rbkeefer Project FMEA Task Potential Failure Severity Potential Cause of Failure Probability How Do We Know Mitigation Risk Index Example: Move a collection of farm animals from New York to Indiana Trailer is on shoulder of road 2 Angry sheep kicked the walls of the trailer 1 Trailer on the side of the road 3 6 System meets performance expectations Efforts to mitigate performance do not fulfill expectations 8 Underlying technologies cannot be optimized 2 Performance tests fail due to time-out issues ( t > 5 seconds ) 5 80 Severity Probability/Likelihood Mitigation 1 - Negligible ( no effect on project success ) 2 - Marginal ( minor effect, measured in hours ) 3 - Significant ( moderate effect, measured in days ) 5 - Critical ( serious effect, measured in weeks ) 8 - Catastrophic ( leads to project failure ) 1 - Extremely Unlikely ( < 5% ) 2 - Unlikely ( < 10% ) 3 - Possible ( 10 - 30% ) 5 - Likely ( 30 - 50% ) 8 - Extremely Likely ( < 50% ) 1 - Definite ( self-mitigating ) 2 - Extremely Likely ( sense/correct immediately ) 3 - Likely ( hours to sense/correct ) 5 - Unlikely ( days to sense/correct ) 8 - Extremely Unlikely ( weeks to sense/correct )
  • 9. pomiet.com @rbkeefer Project FMEA Example Task Potential Failure Severity Potential Cause of Failure Probability How Do We Know Mitigation Risk Index Example: Move a collection of farm animals from New York to Indiana Trailer is on shoulder of road 2 Angry sheep kicked the walls of the trailer 1 Trailer on the side of the road 3 6 System meets performance expectations Efforts to mitigate performance do not fulfill expectations 8 Underlying technologies cannot be optimized 2 Performance tests fail due to time-out issues ( t > 5 seconds ) 5 80 Development Cost is Approved Cost estimates for development are not approved 5 Business determines that costs are too high to justify effort 3 Approval of Costs is stalled by <DATE> 5 75 Identify / Replace PO by <DATE> New PO cannot be named in a timely manner 5 Difficult to free someone from daily responsibilities 2 Unidentified PO on <DATE> 5 50
  • 10. pomiet.com @rbkeefer Exercise Project: Replace entire existing software system • The Orlando Research Company performs detailed internet-based research and produces summary reports of the findings. • Sales team uses system to track potential leads, make calls, process the sale, and deliver the final report. • Operations team uses the system to manage research projects and the outsourced teams of people who perform the research and writhe the report. Operations is also responsible for tracking delivery progress and quality. • Development team of 2 experienced developers and 4 junior developers are mostly familiar with the technology. • Product Owner is busy with her other responsibilities and is difficult to get on her calendar. • Business owner is a driven entrepreneur with many ideas and high expectations of everyone around him. He is known to be hard to work with. • System must be delivered with $600,000 and 6 months. • More to come … Just Ask.
  • 11. pomiet.com @rbkeefer FMEA Anchors Severity Probability/Likelihood Mitigation 1 - Negligible ( no effect on project success ) 2 - Marginal ( minor effect, measured in hours ) 3 - Significant ( moderate effect, measured in days ) 5 - Critical ( serious effect, measured in weeks ) 8 - Catastrophic ( leads to project failure ) 1 - Extremely Unlikely ( < 5% ) 2 - Unlikely ( < 10% ) 3 - Possible ( 10 - 30% ) 5 - Likely ( 30 - 50% ) 8 - Extremely Likely ( < 50% ) 1 - Definite ( self-mitigating ) 2 - Extremely Likely ( sense/correct immediately ) 3 - Likely ( hours to sense/correct ) 5 - Unlikely ( days to sense/correct ) 8 - Extremely Unlikely ( weeks to sense/correct ) Risk Index - Low Risk - Moderately Low Risk - Moderately High Risk - High Risk 1-10 11-30 31-60 > 60
  • 12. pomiet.com @rbkeefer Big Idea Understanding failure modes and potential mitigation strategies can (hopefully) lead to a successful project.
  • 13. pomiet.com @rbkeefer Continue the Conversation Rob Keefer, PhD rob.Keefer@pomiet.com @rbkeefer