Farhan Hassan*
Analyzing by Five Whys

Identification

5-Whys is a part of the RCA [Root Cause Analysis] aspect that was developed by the Japanese inventor and industrialist Mr. Sakichi Toyoda for Toyota’s manufacturing processes in 1958. Also, used as a technique in the Analyze phase of the Six Sigma DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control) methodology

It is a brainstorming tool by an iterative interrogative technique used to explore the cause-and-effect relationships underlying a particular problem to help the team identify the root cause(s) of a matter or a problem.

 

Concept

The concept here is by asking "Why?" five times successively, can you delve into a problem deeply enough to understand the ultimate root cause.

As by the fifth why the auditor should have identified or be close to identifying the root cause of the issue. 

 

Methodology

• The answers come from people who have hands-on experience of the process or problem in question. 

• It can be used to complement the analysis necessary to complete a Cause & Effect diagram. 

• This methodology is can related to the Cause & Effect (Fishbone) diagram.

 

Example (Wikipedia):

The vehicle will not start. (The problem)

1. Why? : The battery is dead.

2. Why? : The alternator is not functioning.

3. Why? : The alternator belt has broken.

4. Why? : The alternator belt was well beyond its useful service life and not replaced. (Fourth why)

5. Why? : The vehicle was not maintained according to the recommended service schedule. (Fifth why, a root cause) 

 

Conclusion

The 5 Whys technique is an effective tool for root cause analysis in Lean management.

In workplace staffs face roadblocks in its daily work, the 5 Whys technique is simple also, effective tool for solving issues.

by finding the real reason for a given problem by asking a sequence of “Why” questions and eliminate these reasons ( answers) and to be sure that it will not be repeated in the future.





E-mail: fhshasn@gmail.com



Twitter: @farhan_939

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