FMEA stands for Failure Modes and Effects Analysis. This great Six Sigma tool or template is a method which will call out possible failures and their impact in a product or process design. This template is used during the concept development or design of a product. Taking the time to use this Six Sigma template will save in production costs in the long run.
Here’s a breakdown:
Failure Modes: This addresses and focuses on the ways a product might fail. This includes small errors that would affect the customer, as this is who we are trying to give the best possible quality in a product. These failures could be actual or a possibility.
Effects Analysis: Here we want to focus on the consequences of those failures or defects that we found.
Here is an overview of the steps of FMEA:
- Define the reason for the FMEA project. What exactly are the parameters and what features are we to focus on because of past experiences? Be clear and concise.
- Brainstorm possible failure modes, all high priority failures that can possibly happen.
- Now name all the possible effects or consequences of those failures.
- Assign a severity ranking for each effect of those failures. This will help prioritize.
- How often does each failure mode occur? Make sure you assign an occurrence ranking to the failure modes.
- Assign a detection or warning ranking for each failure mode. The higher the score means that the failure happens without warning.
- Estimate the risk level for each effect.
- Prioritize the failure modes in their action, the higher the risk priority number (RPN) for each failure.
- Identify the actions used to correct this issue.
- Establish a process to track and monitor the solution.
There isn’t any exact way to conduct FMEA because each industry is different, but within your parameters following the list above is a choice.