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Visual FMEA

'Failure Modes & Effects Analysis app' is designed to help you save time, manage and efficiently produce a Failure Mode and Effects Analysis.

All businesses have internal demands and external demands from customers, which influence the need to improve their products or processes and get it right first time every time. One of the main reasons that businesses should use Visual FMEA is because it utilises a ‘prevention-based’ approach and allows you to target the root cause of problems, helping you reduce opportunities for error within the process or product you are producing. With Visual FMEA you can create the Process FMEA and Product/Design FMEA within the one application.

Overview of Visual FMEA

Have you heard of ‘Murphy's Law’? It is an old adage that is typically stated as: “Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong”.

Visual FMEA helps you identify those areas within a Process that are at a higher risk of “going wrong”. By implementing an action plan to address risks, you can prevent the opportunity for Murphy’s Law to strike.

Today, most users produce FMEAs inside Microsoft Excel or a similar spreadsheet application. Whilst this is good for the presentation of a FMEA, it is not the best method for creating a FMEA. For those of you that can relate to the use of spreadsheets, you will know only too well how difficult the true creation and use of a FMEA becomes, with no direct links to any other software applications, no cell merging, inserting rows or repeated copy and paste actions.

Visual FMEA has been designed with the ‘user’ in mind at all times. The user interface for creating the FMEA visually displays relationships as 'Branches', ensuring the user focus is on the 'Process' for a Process FMEA or Product for a Product/Design FMEA.

How Visual FMEA Works

The Visual FMEA Application standardises your approach to creating the 'Process Flow or Map'. You and your team can efficiently enter the Identified Process Operations from start to finish. You can then breakdown these basic process operations into more detail with process Steps and apply the applicable Visual Symbol describing that step (Operation, Transport, Inspection, Storage, Delay).

The Characteristics of these Process Steps can then be identified and applied either as a Product Characteristic, process Characteristic or Safety Characteristic.

The level of detail you go to is entirely up to you as a user, but once the steps described above have been completed, you are able to present the data in any Microsoft excel workbook with your own design of Process Flow or Map.

Now that you have the Process Defined, the Potential Failure Modes and Effects Analysis can be carried out.

The most common approach to creating a FMEA is often by using a customer/standard issue Microsoft Excel Workbook. We have taken a step back and produced an application that takes you through the ‘Thought’ process when putting together the FMEA.

Visual FMEA allows you to define and assign the Failure Modes at each process step level presenting you with a tree-like structure of the open branch as it is being created. Once the failure modes have been identified, the user can then define/apply the Effects of Failure and its associated Severity Rating. The same tree-like structure and methodology applies to defining/applying the Causes of Failure and associated Occurrence rating and the Detection/Prevention Methods and Detection rating.

For any given branch from the FMEA that may be open, the RPN (Risk Priority Number) is calculated. You are now in a position to analyse the RPN values. Those that are above your predefined limit (i.e. at a high risk of failure) can have actions put in place and text entered within Visual FMEA to open up this action plan loop.

For any action created, you will be able to assign who is responsible, any target completion dates and what action should be taken. When the new actions have been reviewed, the user/team can determine the new severity, occurrence and detection values, ultimately reducing the overall RPN value.

The application offers you the opportunity to save any assigned Operation Description, Process Step, Characteristic, Failure Mode, Effect, Cause or Detection method to a Library associated to your Company Database Name, enabling other users to put a FMEA together very efficiently and effectively in the future.

Visual FMEA allows you to output/present the data in any Microsoft excel workbook with your own design of FMEA. Any changes made within Visual FMEA will automatically update the FMEA display on the workbook.

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