Root Cause Analysis

Tracing a Problem to its Origins

Root cause analysis is an analytic process designed to identify underlying factors that have contributed to or have directly caused a major adverse event or systems failure. The approach became an important aspect of Toyota's Lean Production System, and now features heavily in the Six Sigma management approach.

This article outlines a step by step method for conducting a root cause analysis, including how to:

  1. Define the problem
  2. Collect data
  3. Identify possible causal factors
  4. Identify the root cause(s)
  5. Recommend and implement solutions
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