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Ishikawa Diagram Fishbone (Cause and Effect) – Template Excel Spreadsheet

Free Ishikawa Diagram Fishbone (cause and effect) - template Excel spreadsheetFishbone Diagram (also known as Ishikawa Diagram) can be used to answer the following questions that commonly arise in problem solving: What are the potential root causes of a problem? What category of process inputs represents the greatest source of variability in the process output?

This diagram is used in process improvement methods to identify all of the contributing root causes likely to be causing a problem. The Fishbone chart is an initial step in the screening process. On a root cause analysis (RCA), after identifying potential root cause(s), further testing will be necessary to confirm the true root cause(s). This methodology can be used on any type of problem, and can be tailored by the user to fit the circumstances.

To help structure the approach, the categories are often selected from one of the common models shown below, but may emerge as something unique to the application in a specific case. Each potential cause is traced back to find the root cause, often using the 5 Whys technique.

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Typical categories include

The 5 Ms (used in manufacturing):

– Machine (equipment, technology)
– Method (process)
– Material (includes raw material, consumables, and information)
– Man / mind power (physical or knowledge work, includes: kaizens, suggestions)
– Measurement / medium (inspection, environment)

These have been expanded by some to include an additional three, and are referred to as the 8 Ms:

– Mission / mother nature (purpose, environment)
– Management / money power (leadership)
– Maintenance

The 8 Ps (used in product marketing):

– Product (or service)
– Price
– Promotion
– Place
– Process
– People (personnel)
– Physical evidence
– Performance

The 4 S’s (used in service industries):

– Surroundings
– Suppliers
– Systems
– Skills

Click here to download our FREE Ishikawa Diagram (Cause and Effect) Template Excel Spreadsheet Example

Combine this free template with other tools:

Kaizen 5S
Simple PDCA

Click here and learn more about Fishbone Ishikawa Diagram (

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