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Ops A La Carte™ Shines the Spotlight on Reliability Consulting

The reliability consulting professionals at Ops A La Carte® continue to enhance the overall value of the services they provide to their clients. One key facet of reliability consulting is in the area of Root Cause Analysis (RCA), which seeks to determine the reasons behind failure-related issues and respond to them before they escalate into full-blown failures.

Product failures can mean costly lags in attaining reliability goals; such failures may even lead to increased design, manufacturing and warranty costs. This is why reliability consulting has become such a vital element within the product-development and -testing environment.

RCA is one of the most important tools that reliability consultants use when analyzing company products. Root causes may be related to any element of production - including a product's design, manufacture and use. RCA can significantly aid in addressing and rectifying customer complaints, in investigation of accidents and in correcting various process issues.

Root Cause Analysis involves a multi-faceted set of tools and applications; successful application lies within knowing which tool, approach or process to access at any given point along the analysis timeline. Properly utilized, a team of reliability consulting professionals may help identify specific causes of failure events and implement preventive (or corrective) measures to resolve the problem.

With limited internal resources to effect Root Cause Analysis, manufacturers frequently rely on reliability consulting teams to conduct testing. That is, when they realize the importance of addressing these issues before they become widespread problems.

Ops A La Carte® employs a seven-step process for implementing Root Cause Analysis for its reliability consulting customers. This is a commonly used method of ensuring ongoing improvement of existing testing processes.

The first step in the Root Cause Analysis process is a straightforward one: Identify or define the problem.

The second step is for the reliability consulting team to analyze and gather pertinent data or evidence.

Identifying the root cause is the third step. This is where the reliability consulting strategists work to determine which fundamental elements, when changed or eliminated, will prevent a repeated failure outcome.

The next step is to identify possible resolutions to the existing issue whose implementation will not result in additional or compounding problems. The key is to find solutions that lie within the reliability consulting agents' control to address - as well as meeting the required goals and objectives.

Step five is simply to implement the discovered solution or solutions, along with any of the reliability consulting team's associated recommendations for improvement.

Evaluation of the outcome is step six.

The final step is to act on the results of the process, building on information learned from the reliability consulting team's overall analysis in the going-forward process.

Too often, companies focus on implementing a solution without adequately addressing the underlying factors that caused the problem in the first place. Sometimes one intended fix causes a secondary problem. Other times, problem solvers find solutions that end up being too narrow in their focus and don't effectively deal with the broad scope of the problem.

The reliability consulting experts at Ops A La Carte® focus on the complex issues that lead to product failure, working diligently to determine causes and finding solutions to overcome such failures in the future.

For additional information about Root Cause Analysis or any of the reliability consulting services offered by Ops A La Carte®, contact us by following this link: contact form.

"Information Please ..."
Ops A La Carte® is pleased to announce its summer/fall webinar and events schedule:

On July 23, join us for a free Root Cause Analysis webinar. This four-hour call-in event will be led by a team of top reliability consulting instructors, whose team-based approach to addressing and solving chronic failure problems applies practical methods to analyzing performance difficulties and uncovering their root causes. To register, follow this link: webinar registration form.

Ops A La Carte® hosts its annual HALT and HASS Labs® Open House event Wednesday, September 17. Free presentations, fun prizes, great food.

Ops A La Carte® exhibits and presents two papers ("Linking Leading Indicators with HALT and HASS" and "To ALT or Not to ALT") at the Accelerated Stress Test and Reliability Workshop, October 1-3 in Portland, Oregon. For details, click here: ASTR.

"Trapped by MTBF" is the subject of a presentation to be delivered by Ops A La Carte® at the Applied Reliability Symposium, October 22-24 in Singapore. Ops will also be exhibiting at the symposium. For details, click here: ARS Asia.

For additional information about any of these events, email us via our contact form.

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