Tips to Create Cause and Effect Diagram

Some practical tips for cause and effect diagrams. Create fishbone diagrams instantly in powerful and easy software. Use clear and organized cause and effect diagrams to identify, address root causes and prevent future problems.

Fishbone diagram is an easy tool enabling quick and effective analysis of root causes in the pursuit of corrective actions. It assists users to focus on the events, processes and activities, identify possible causes of a problem and sort ideas into useful categories. It is a graphical tool to find out root cause and countermeasures.

Tips to Create Cause and Effect Diagram

Tip 1: Use automatic software with predefined shapes and ready-made templates, such as Edraw. This will save you a large amount of time and effort. What is more, you can save money without compromising design quality with Edraw's advanced functions.

Tip 2: Organize a team to carry out the undertaking rather than rely on your own. Drawing on the wisdom of the masses surpasses one's own force most of the time. Team collaboration will make things more efficient.

Tip 3: Be clear about the major categories of causes of the problem (written as branches from the main arrow). Classification can make your diagram more organized and clearer. Major categories often include: equipment or supply factors, environmental factors, rules/policy/procedure factors, and people/staff factors. In this way, it will be easier to find out the solution for a problem.

Tip 4: Brainstorm all the possible causes of the problem. Encourage each member to participate in the brainstorming activity and to voice his own opinions. Draw on the wisdom of the mass, which is a huge benefit of teamwork. Ask "Why does this happen?" As each idea is summed up, the facilitator input the causal factor as a branch into the appropriate category (places it on the fishbone diagram). Continue going through the rounds, getting more causes, until all ideas are exhausted.

Tip 5: Same causes can be written in several places if they relate to several categories. Build sub-causes branches for the major cause branches.

Tip 6: Make full use of the fishbone diagram tool to help the team focused on the causes of the problem, rather than the symptoms. More energy should be given to solutions rather than worries about the problems.

Tip 7: If you choose to draw on hand, consider drawing your fishbone diagram on a flip chart or large dry erase board. If you use Edraw to draw it, you don't need to worry about making mistakes since modification is quite easy. See an example about marketing strategy below.

Marketing Strategy Fishbone

This example is characterized by:

  1. Perfect layout with all lines paralleled and evenly spaced.
  2. Clear classification of all factors into 6 Ps: price, process, product, people, place and promotion.
  3. Easy adding and deleting of lines and text for the attached connection points.
  4. Instant change of theme through which color, line and fill styles can all be enhanced with 1 click.
  5. Flexible presentation aided by the function supporting modification in full screen mode.

Position Fishbone Categories and Shapes

Discover the magic of Edraw as a cause and effect diagramming software: Try it FREE.

Learn using fishbone to improve working efficiency here.

Fishbone Diagram Symbols

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5W1H Method for Cause-effect Analysis

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