Sunday, September 12, 2010

Process Improvement Tool - 8D

Recently I came across this tool, which one of my client is using. It does not have that much of a publicity but a size-able number of organization actually follows it. Check it out.

8D is a problem-solving methodology for product and process improvement. It is structured into eight disciplines, emphasizing team synergy. The team as whole is better and smarter than the quality sum of the individuals. Each discipline is supported by a checklist of assessment questions, such as "what is wrong with what", "what, when, where, how much".

The Eight Disciplines

1. Use Team Approach
    Establish a small group of people with the knowledge, time, authority and skill to solve the problem and implement corrective actions. The group must select a team leader.

2. Describe the Problem
    Describe the problem in measurable terms. Specify the internal or external customer problem by describing it in specific terms.

3. Implement and Verify Short-Term Corrective Actions
    Define and implement those intermediate actions that will protect the customer from the problem until permanent corrective action is implemented. Verify with data the effectiveness of these actions.

4. Define and Verify Root Causes
    Identify all potential causes which could explain why the problem occurred. Test each potential cause against the problem description and data. Identify alternative corrective actions to eliminate root cause.

5. Verify Corrective Actions
    Confirm that the selected corrective actions will resolve the problem for the customer and will not cause undesirable side effects. Define other actions, if necessary, based on potential severity of problem.

6. Implement Permanent Corrective Actions
    Define and implement the permanent corrective actions needed. Choose on-going controls to insure the root cause is eliminated. Once in production, monitor the long-term effects and implement additional controls as necessary.

7. Prevent Recurrence
    Modify specifications, update training, review work flow, improve practices and procedures to prevent recurrence of this and all similar problems.

8. Congratulate Your Team
    Recognize the collective efforts of your team. Publicize your achievement. Share your knowledge and learning.

~~ Show me the data.

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