What is Failure Modes & Effects Analysis (FMEA)?
FMEA (Failure Modes & Effects Analysis) template is a risk assessment tool that helps practitioners to identify and manage the potential failures in a product or process.
It also analyzes the causes of failures and the likelihood of them being detected in advance. In case of unavoidable risks, timely planning can prevent late design changes.
“The ability of FMEA to foresee problems early allows practitioners to incorporate reliable and safe features. Once assessed, failures can be prioritized and addressed with corrective actions. - Rebecca Thomas, Quality Manager.
Benefits of FEMA template
Benefit#1: When you use this FMEA template, you can identify and avoid product or process problems before they occur.
Benefit#2: Whether it is a healthcare facility or a manufacturing unit process, you can prevent adverse events and avoid downtime using FMEA template.
Benefit#3: When executed properly, the template can help you in improving the overall performance, satisfaction, and safety level of the process.
How to use?
Several factors influence the success of a project. Factors such as a lack of qualified resources, customer data, proven technologies, or team member availability represent a risk.
To prevent these risks or be prepared in case they occur, project leaders should identify the chief risks and address them on time. Here are the 4 stages that cover how to use FMEA template to design a risk-mitigation plan:
Stage# 1: Identify Potential Causes
The project team brainstorms and lists potential risks that might prevent a project from being successful.
Concerns from team members are also managed as risks. Risks that might occur at any phase during a process are assigned as “General” risks.
Besides, the team identifies potential sources for each risk. This will help them to plan corrective or remedial actions.
Stage#2: Rank Potential Risks
The team assesses each risk based on its likelihood of occurrence and how it can impact the project and ranks it in the following groups:
Rank 1 = low likelihood of occurrence, low impact
Rank 2 = medium likelihood of occurrence, medium impact
Rank 3 = high likelihood of occurrence, high impact
The team members discuss each risk to arrive at a consensus on its ranking.
Stage#3: Prioritize Risks and Plan Mitigation Actions
After ranking the risks, the team members calculate a risk priority number (RPN) using the formula:
RPN = occurrence X severity X detection
The failures are then listed in descending RPN order. After prioritizing the risks, the team members should plan mitigation actions. They should check whether the actions will assist in mitigating the impact or the likelihood of risk occurrence.
“The best case is when the actions can eliminate the risk. Second best actions reduce the likelihood of occurrence, whereas the third-best actions define contingency plans ( if you cannot prevent a risk, you should know what actions to take if it occurs).”- Mayank Kapoor, Six Sigma Practitioner
Stage# 4: Review and Update FMEA
Risk assessment is not a one-time event. The team has to continuously update the template as the project progresses and check the implementation of mitigation plans.
The team finds out the likelihood of occurrence for those risks that have been properly mitigated. Based on this assessment, they recalculate and come up with the new risk rankings.
The project team continuously identifies new risks and manages them as they occur.
“The FMEA tool can be used to improve the reliability of products and processes, prevent costly last-minute design changes, and increase customer satisfaction.”- Kounal Gupta, CEO, Henry Harvin Education.