Problem analysis

What is it?

Problem analysis is a technique which can enable you to think logically and find root causes of differences - positive or negative - in standards of performance within a management or work process.

When to use it

  • There is a change in an expected process,
  • The cause of the change is unknown,
  • The cause of the change has to be known for effective action to be taken

What does it achieve?

Problem analysis provides the skills needed to explain any situation or process, in which an expected level of performance has not been reached and in which the cause of the unacceptable performance is not known. It provides a method of testing for the most probable cause of a change and then verifying the cause of that change.

When a problem exists within a process, invariably, it requires a group of people with different expertise to get together and solve the problem. Problem analysis enables people to approach the problem as a team to determine the root cause(s).

Key steps

  • Define the problem
  • Describe the problem - is/is not
  • Distinctive features
  • Determine change
  • Generate possible causes
  • testing for most likely causes
  • Verifying the root cause(s)