Root Cause Analysis

Root Cause Analysis refers to finding the crux of a problem. It is used as an umbrella term to refer to various tools and techniques applied to solve the problem. This approach is applied across different industries, from healthcare and software to environment and manufacturing.

It is one of the popular methods among scientists and engineers to resolve various technical issues. At the same time, IT professionals commonly apply it to narrow down the source of a bug while coding.

In business, it is one of the most critical aspects of quality control in any organization. It helps identify the core problems in the products, processes, systems, and financial performances. Recognizing the exact cause assists in designing measures to eliminate the loopholes at the right time. Note that there are three possible causes behind any issue: physical, organizational, and human.

One of the extensively used root cause analysis tools is the 5 Whys. Here, the analyst or the team leader raises the question “Why the situation occurred?” And then, in the course of deeper investigation, a sequence of Whys is put forward for the team to find the answers. This continues until the base cause or primary reason is discovered.

Note that there is no limit to asking the Whys in this method. It can even go beyond five questions, depending on the case. Let us understand this concept through an example.

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